Serrari Group

Microsoft and M-PESA  have unveiled their strategic partnership aimed at bolstering the growth of micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) across Africa. This initiative intends to equip MSMEs with the digital expertise and essential tools necessary to expand their operations and enhance customer service.

The partnership recognizes the pivotal role MSMEs play in the African economy. “Micro, Small, and Medium businesses are the backbone of African economies,” emphasized Sitoyo Lopokoiyit, the Managing Director of M-PESA Africa. “Empowering them to succeed creates an even larger impact for their communities due to their outsized economic contribution.”

Gerald Maithya, the Managing Director of the Africa Transformation Office at Microsoft, echoed this sentiment, underscoring how digitization can revolutionize financial inclusion, especially for underserved and unserved enterprises like MSMEs. “Creating an enabling environment for these important economically active businesses that help them thrive and participate actively in the continent’s economies is essential for sustainable and inclusive economic growth,” he stated.

As part of this groundbreaking partnership, MSMEs will gain access to Microsoft’s robust Community and Training platform. Here, they can acquire a range of digital skills, from basic accounting to financial planning and cash flow management. In addition to this invaluable resource, MSMEs will have the privilege of leveraging M-PESA’s cutting-edge business solutions, which are designed to streamline operations and expand their reach to a wider customer base.

“We are excited to partner with Microsoft to help MSMEs across Africa grow and succeed,” said Lopokoiyit. “Together, we can help them leverage technology to serve their customers better and contribute to the continent’s economic development.”

This collaboration holds immense promise for Africa’s MSMEs, which constitute the bedrock of the continent’s economies. Through the combined efforts of Microsoft and M-PESA, these enterprises are poised to create more job opportunities and foster inclusive economic growth by equipping them with the digital skills and tools they need to thrive.

Under this partnership, Microsoft will provide access to its Community Platform and SME Skilling Programs, driving capacity-building and digitization efforts tailored to the unique needs of Micro, Small, and Medium SMEs (MSMEs) across various African markets.

The Microsoft Community and Training platform will serve as a digital skilling hub, where M-PESA Africa will embark on a mission to digitize and upskill MSMEs. The platform will empower these businesses with the essential skills to develop robust business models, manage finances efficiently, and deliver outstanding customer service.

M-PESA, renowned as Africa’s premier fintech and payments service provider, currently links more than 60 million customers and over 900,000 businesses through its M-PESA business solutions in eight countries.

Small and Medium Enterprises, a cornerstone of Africa’s economic fabric, hold the potential to fuel inclusive socio-economic growth across the continent. These enterprises are the bedrock of national economies and are instrumental in generating new jobs.

In emerging economies, SMEs account for a substantial 40 percent of GDP and play a pivotal role in creating at least 90 percent of new job opportunities. The Microsoft and M-PESA partnership is poised to unlock unprecedented opportunities for MSMEs, paving the way for a more prosperous and digitally transformed future for African businesses.

Photo source: Safaricom

5th October, 2023
Delino Gayweh
Serrari Financial Analyst

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