Lessons on Insane Customer Focus

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I land in Nairobi on a warm August night and need to get to my family’s house outside the city. I don’t have Kenyan money on me for a taxi, but I don’t bother looking for a place to exchange my U.S. dollars.

But with M-PESA on my phone, I have instant access to both my U.S. and my Kenyan funds (banks), and I can start transacting like a local right away without worrying about expensive international phone charges.

Pesa – means money in Swahili, M – Mobile. It’s also made Kenya one of the world leaders in mobile money usage.

Armed with only a phone and a laptop, I’m able to seamlessly run my advisor business for months from deep in the country miles away from any major cities.

With M-PESA, I’m able to buy data bundles for my Safaricom line, which allows me to get online at some amazing speeds. This is in addition to being able to buy cheap airtime that allows me to call friends and family back in the U.S.

M-PESA is Safaricom’s most innovative product and has been credited as one of the 10 most influential projects of the last 50 years.

The concept is simple – store money in a secure digital account. Then use your phone to send money to other users on the system and pay for all kinds of services.