Peter Ndegwa’s 100 Days in Office

In the mid of this month (July 2020), Peter Ndegwa marked his 100th day in office as the Chief Executive Officer for Safaricom PLC. He has taken up the mantle as a digital leader at a time when the COVID-19 pandemic has fastened the migration journey to a digital lifestyle. When he took office in April this year, Mr. Ndegwa undertook to democratize data and to enable Micro, Small and Medium Sized Entreprises (MSMEs) to thrive while ensuring an enhanced customer experience for all. Democratizing data implies facilitating its universal access. It requires continually working towards bridging the digital divide. Peter Ndegwa endeavors to achieve this dream by maintaining a strong 4G network across the country and by putting 4G enabled devises in the hands of more people. He boasts of an increased number of 4G sites in the country by 637 more as a milestone towards increasing 4G coverage beyond the current rate of 77% across Kenya. Safaricom’s fibre to home connections have also grown by an additional 28,000 new connections in Ndegwa’s first 100 days. The new CEO is positioning Safaricom at a front row seat in facilitating an online lifestyle brought by COVID-19 pandemic. The new realities of working from home and e-learning are a big opportunity for him to make profits for the company. Democratizing data will help him widen Safaricom’s market of data consumers. (Currently only 42% of safaricom subscribers own smartphones, while only 16.8% have 4G handsets). Ndegwa’s strategy is to sell 4G enabled devises to Safaricom subscribers in the “Mulika Mwizi” category at subsidized rates payable on daily Kes.20 instalments through a financial plan dubbed Lipa Mdogo Mdogo. Lately, the brilliant new Safaricom boss has launched the Lipa Na M-Pesa Business App. Dubbed M-PESA for Business that will empower the SME business owners to access realtime statements, transact their accounts to make payments, track their business performance on the go among others. He aims at assisting the SMEs to enhance their efficiency through technologies such as internet of things, which keep track of their assets and gather important data to inform business decisions. In a report published in the Business Daily on 17th July 2020, Mr. Ndegwa expressed his commitment to leverage on the opportunities presented by COVID-19 pandemic to enhance economic capabilities for individuals and businesses. He stated that the faster pace at which the digital age is setting is perhaps the greatest opportunity out of this pandemic.

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