Have you ever noticed how some brands are more famous than the corporations, which own them? You might know of Pampers, Colgate or Travellers, but do you know the companies that own them? Investment adviser Igor Cornelsen reminds us that Africa does not have many global brands, but for these three reasons, M-Pesa could be the first.
“1. M-Pesa is Most Popular Kenya Brand”
M-Pesa is the popular mobile payment system created by Kenya’s Safaricom. In many ways, it has become its own unique currency, with industry-leading features. Already, M-Pesa has become the most admired brand in Kenya (surpassing its owner Safaricom).
The beauty of the “M-Pesa” name is that it is easy to remember. It transcends national boundaries, as people make payments to relatives in other countries. Vodafone has recognized this and made a significant investment in M-Pesa.
“2. Quick Silver Capital Reach”
Wealth adviser Igor Cornelsen has noted the dearth of affordable capital in Africa – this has prevented global expansion of the continent’s brands. Vodafone has access to cheap capital and has purchased a 40% stake in M-Pesa’s principal.
Now, Vodafone is using its global connections to expand the Kenya based brand into Ghana, Romania, Albania and India (up to a total of 11 countries). This could be a great way to combine African entrepreneur innovations with European capital. Wealth manager Igor Cornelsen sees this cooperation as a way to overcome some limitations in the present African capital markets.
“3. Sparse Competition”
Africa is well-primed for high growth rates. There are plenty of entrepreneurs with great ideas, but no capital to help them make their dreams become reality, according to Mr. Igor Cornelsen. There is very little competition in some markets and that is why M-Pesa can grow quickly.
Some investors might want to add the “most popular” brand in Africa to their wealth portfolio. M-Pesa has a good chance because of its innovative technology, Vodafone capital and the dearth of other African competitors. Mr. Cornelsen could help investors get in on the “ground floor” before the M-Pesa brand gains even more exposure. Mr. Cornelsen understands Africa.