M-Pesa update

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My colleague Jim Rosenberg at CGAP points me to a very useful post on the debate taking place around M-Pesa, the highly successful mobile payments service in Kenya. (See my earlier post on Disruptive technologies: M-Pesa vs. the banks for a bit of background.) It seems the banks in Kenya are threatened by the success of M-Pesa and are clamoring for a regulatory crackdown from the Central Bank.

All of this brings up the difficult question of how to regulate companies that provide financial services to the previously under- or unserved. Is this a case where regulation will serve a legitimate public interest in protecting consumers or where it will protect incumbent firms but masquerade as consumer protection? Let's hope it turns out to be the former. For more on the controversy, check out the East African Standard and the Business Daily.

(Hat tip: Mark Pickens)


Ryan Hahn

Operations Officer

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