Paypal account holders in Kenya will now be able to withdraw their Paypal dollars directly to Mpesa. This is after Vodafone announced a partnership with TransferTo, a Singapore-based remittance firm, that will provide the direct Mpesa transfers. The service will be facilitated by Xoom which is Paypal run service that facilitates international money transfers. Safaricom, on the other hand, is growing the Mpesa brand as an international money transfer agent. Paypal is undoubtedly the largest online payments system in the world. The partnership was always bound to happen with the growing popularity of Paypal in Kenya for remittances and online purchases. Furthermore, Paypal is probably the most popular online payment transfer system among freelancers of which there are 40,000 in Kenya and constantly growing.
The Mobile World Congress is the largest mobile tech conference of the year where the largest tech companies reveal their latest flagships and tech revelations. The announcement signaled the partnership between the largest payment processor in Kenya and the largest in the world.
Safaricom already had a deal in place with one of the largest Paypal competitors in the form of Skrill, and you could make Paypal deposits to Equity bank accounts but this service was plagued by an uncomfortably long waiting period (5-8 days) because it involved a third party money processor in South Africa.
Mpesa in now an important element in the global money transfer scene with Billions of shillings transacted through the platform everyday. Remittances from North America accounted for 49% of the total international inflows into the country in 2015. Paypal is the trusted money wallet in the region and this service is bound to make the transfer of funds much easier.
We will give the service a try and provide a guide once we get the full go-ahead from Paypal.