Vodafone launches mobile money system M-Pesa in Romania

This is a breath of fresh air… rather than seeing an international service launching in Africa, today we see the opposite. M-Pesa, the Kenyan-born mobile money transfer and payment service, will launch in Romania — an example of an African-born solution breaking into global markets. Vodafone, which has an e-money licence to offer and operate financial services in Europe, will be launching the initiative.

Vodafone has launched M-Pesa in Romania, marking the first time the widely-used mobile money system has made it across to Europe. M-Pesa has almost 17 million users around the world, but there’s a good chance you’ve never heard of it. It’s been around for around 7 years in Kenya, from where it has spread to Tanzania, South Africa, India and Afghanistan. In all of these developing markets there are millions of people who lack formal bank accounts, but they do have mobile phones, and M-Pesa gives them a way to use their handsets to make and receive payments.

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