Safaricom, a Kenyan telecommunications service provider, has hired the managing director of Citibank to be in charge of strategy and acquisitions.

The telco is currently seeking regulatory approvals to launch insurance, unit trust, and savings products in an endeavour to compete with larger financial services and expand its mobile money platform M-Pesa.

Michael Mutiga, MD of Citibank and head of corporate finance for sub-Saharan Africa from 2019 will be the new chief business development and strategy officer, according to an internal memo that was first seen by Business Daily.

Mutiga will be replacing former Safaricom’s chief of special projects and acting chief business development and strategy officer, Joe Ogutu, who retired from the company last month.

Mutiga has been with Citibank for 15 years, serving in different senior local and regional management roles.

“He will lead Safaricom’s business development and transformation agenda, and will be responsible for strategic partnerships, mergers, and acquisitions; Safaricom’s funding strategy and asset optimisation,” said Safaricom CEO Peter Ndegwa.

The telco has been testing three new products dubbed Bima (Insurance), Mali (mobile savings), and a unit trust investment product in recent months. The telco service overtook voice last year to become the largest business line after it posted the highest revenue growth of 45.8 percent to Sh52.3 billion ($91-million).

By Zintle Nkohla 

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