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Safaricom Record Profit Run Hits a Speed Bump

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Safaricom Profit 2020: Safaricom (NSE: SCOM), hit hard by a slowdown in business and forced government concessions, has announced a 6.8% drop in full -year net profits to Kshh68.7 billion in 2020, down from the Ksh73.6 billion recorded in the previous year. The mobile operator saw a dip fortunes in the first half of the year, but rebounded in the second half to report Ksh250.3 billion in revenues.

The company recorded flat growth in the financial year ending March  2021, hit by the tough economic conditions triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic. During this period, Safaricom enabled Kenyans to reduce the impact of the pandemic by waiving fees for transactions below a Ksh1,000, which saw free transactions worth KES 4.4 billion processed.

Service revenue recorded a marginal decline of 0.3% to close at Ksh250.35 billion driven by double-digit growth in mobile data business, which grew by 11.5% year-on-year (YoY) to Ksh44.79 billion. M-PESA and Voice revenue declined marginally with M-PESA recording a 2.1% drop YoY to Ksh82. 64 billion and voice dropping by 4.6% to register revenue of Ksh82.55 billion.

“We remained resilient in a disruptive year, demonstrating strong operational capacity, diligence and commitment in supporting the country, our customers and shareholders through this uncertain time,” said Peter Ndegwa, Safaricom CEO. “Our immediate focus in the year has been to ensure that network capacity, operations and financial services are prioritized to limit disruptions.”

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M-PESA accounted for 33.0% of the total service revenue down from 33.6% last year, impacted by the waiver of the Peer-to-Peer (P2P) transactions fees.



  • 5.3% YoY decline in EBIT (Earnings before Interest and Tax) to KES 96.16bn with an EBIT margin of 36.5%, down 2.2ppts YoY.
  • Net Income reduced by 6.8% YoY to KES 68.68bn.
  • Free Cash Flow down 8.2% YoY to KES 64.52bn.
  • Service revenue contracted by 0.3% to KES 250.35bn.
  • Voice service (outgoing) revenue reduced by 4.6% YoY to KES 82.55bn.
  • M-PESA revenue dropped by 2.1% YoY to KES 82.65bn.
  • Mobile data revenue increased by 11.5% YoY to KES 44,79bn.
  • Messaging revenue declined by 11.7% YoY to KES 13.60bn.
  • The total one-month active customer base increased by 9.9% to 31.45Mn.
  • One month active M-PESA customers increased 13.6% to 28.31mn.
  • One month active mobile data customers increased 8.1% to 23.77mn.


To support Micro and Small Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), the company introduced the Pochi La Biashara, M-PESA Business App, Bill Manager, Merchant Transacting till and Self On-Boarding process. Safaricom has also announced that the consumer M-PESA App will be launched in quarter one of the current financial year.

Peter Ndegwa Safaricom CEO - Safaricom 2020 Profit
“Despite a tough financial year, the company is committed to investing in the business and maintaining a consistent dividend payout ratio,” says Safaricom CEO, Peter Ndegwa.

Commenting on the future of the business, Ndegwa noted: “Despite a tough financial year, the company is committed to investing in the business and maintaining a consistent dividend payout ratio in line with our dividend policy. Our guidance for the Financial year 2022 is at the range of Ksh105 – Ksh108 billion for Earnings Before Interest and Tax and Capital Expenditure guidance in the range of Ksh40-43 billion.”

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BT Correspondent
BT Correspondenthttp://www.businesstoday.co.ke
editor [at] businesstoday.co.ke
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