Mostly Safaricom

The ban on plastic paper announced in last Thursday’s budget has temporarily been reversed. It was an amorphous declaration covering all manner of plastics (consumer, industrial) that was likely to lead to an unintended increase in the price of many items.


  • Has lowered rates for phone calls and SMS from today. Mobile companies have become increasingly competitive with Celtel and Telkom Wireless – who have deployed VoIP and roaming features – nipping at the edges of Safaricom’s base. Are free weekends from Celtel the next offering?
  • Safaricom has opted to recycle numbers now that they were running out of lines(prefix 0720-0729. Unused phone lines (not used/topped up) for 4 months can now be reclaimed by the company and be resold (previously they expired after 1 year)
  • I’ve noticed on my recent travels in South Africa, Uganda and Tanzania – that all Vodafone-affiliated networks have a cool feature that lets you know where you are (location). It was tested once in Kenya last year but the flip side to this is that it reminds paranoid people that the phone companies (and other interested authorities) know if you are at Ngurdoto Mountain Lodge, Johannesburg airport or the Speke hotel and that they can find you and perhaps not wanting to spook some subscribers have not activated the feature in Kenya. [Read how it affected a lion’s phone choice and more on big brother from Uganda and South Africa]
  • 30% of Safaricom up for an IPO this fiscal year.

Sports TV: G TV are expected to have 80% of premiership games this year. Is that reason enough for DSTV to panic? (I am not a subscriber). There’s also Oxygen (cable) TV (costs Kshs 999 per month), and free TV (Nation (with La Liga), Citizen (rename them ChelseaTV), KBC, KTN and other channels with various sports offerings. The big attraction of DSTV is sports, but also the other channels like Movies, MNET and Discovery. DSTV now assures that they will still have games of the big four (Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool Man U – listed alphabetically, not by rank)- two every Saturday, two every Sunday, and one on Monday night. So what is 80% worth if it features teams like Blackburn, Man City, Sunderland and Wigan at a cost of about Kshs 2,200 per month?

6 thoughts on “Mostly Safaricom

  1. Kirima

    I’m all for reducing plastic use but the context of usage should be considered for example exporters.
    Safaricom tarrif reduction was about time but 30 bob per minute is still the highest tarrif in the land as dominant player they should be th lowest.
    GTV is most welcome but its acceptance will depend on the content which should be relevant to most of us DSTV has been having it too good for a very long time

  2. Anonymous

    what do you guys think anout homegrown – i think its being sold to finlays. I think they should have gone public instead

    i think there business is very interesting though i think from a political view they should have sold a stake to the public – i think agrc business is very political and i think businesses are realizing that listing there business is a from of political insurance.

    im surprised transcentury havent put in a bid

  3. Dropmyload

    Safaricom – masters of the spin!!! Suddenly feel magnanimous and reduce call charges, and wham…2 days later announce profits in excess of KES 17B ( $258M). Why do I feel exploited here?

  4. bankelele

    Kirima: ban on plastics is needed. but it also needs to be combined with an educational campaign and give time for retail shops and shoppers to adapt.

    Dropmyload: price reduction really qushioned the blow – like saying, “we took too much from you last year, take some change back”

  5. sir spankalot

    Please please understand. The 80% offered by GTV is more than worth it for soccer fans. Not all of us follow to supposed “big four”. I myself am a middlesborough supporter – a true soccer team – and believe that this rubbish of man u na arsenali has had its day and kenyans can now have access to all the teams and make their own choices rather than having teams forced down their throats by media people who have no idea how a soccer game is played or what true passion for the game is.

  6. mudskippah

    Someone’s not saying everything. GTV is the only one licensed to air LIVE matches on weekends. DSTV can only air live on Mondays (and GTV can’t). GTV’s licence includes the top teams plus all championship, relegation and Europe-qualifying games in the EPL. G has a clear advantage, it’s the one with THE big games, that’s why (i guess) DStv are being very quiet about their football offering.

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