How MTN M. Money Is Changing Users’ Lives
It’s been eight years since MTN launched MTN Mobile Money (MMM)-the life changing financial service. Since 2009 no one knew how much of an impact this service would have on ordinary people’s lives and on the economy. It started as a means to remit funds, buy airtime or bundles and has evolved to bill payment, saving & borrowing, donations, depositing/withdrawing from the bank as well as paying fees and taxes among other services.
MMM has now grown to over 8 million customers with over 70,000 agents country wide.
“It’s been an incredible journey so far and we are taking a deliberate effort to recognize, reward and appreciate our customers who have walked with us the journey of Mobile Money since 2009. We are therefore using this time to celebrate with our customers for using MMM and most importantly gather feedback, resolve customer queries in order to improve the service” said Elsa Muzzolini the MTN General Manager Mobile Financial Services.
Red Pepper brings you some of the hope-giving testimonies of people that have benefited from using MMM;
One of such beneficiaries is Lillian Akello. Eight years ago, Akello, who owns a small retail shop in Ntinda along Kyambogo Road was a struggling kiosk owner in the heart of Ntinda trying to eke out a living by selling groceries. However, she said, since joining MMM business as an agent it has been a revolution, so much so that it has brought in more money than her main retail business does.
“It has improved my life and brings in much better income than selling the things that you see here in the shop,” said Akello says as she points animatedly to her well stocked kiosk, which has been fittingly named ‘All In One’. Akello, also known as ‘Mama Susan’ to her customers and the community, has seen the wonders of MMM and she tells the trick: “As long as you have capital, you can use it to get more money. Your money makes you more money”.
Besides helping her life move on, Akello’s MMM business too helps others. “These people you see driving here, always run out of fuel, and they come here to withdraw money to go and get fuel from the petrol station up here,” she says, with the tone of a person who has seen it all. From selling tomatoes fifteen years to a fully-fledged “All In One” kiosk Mama Susan says her commission on a month can be as high as UGX 300,000.
It is such amazing real life stories of Mama Susan and others that drove MTN Uganda to celebrate the MMM month that kicked off from July 1st 2017 and runs until August 5 2017.
Secondly, is Pamela Musiimenta, a 26 year old ‘hustler’ as she would like to be known. She runs many small businesses including a salon, a make-up studio, a baking house, a hand making jewelry shop, a nail bar and an events management company. For her business to be successful she has to make many transactions within a short time to numerous people.
“At any one time I have so many clients to attend to. The best way to manage them is using MMM especially where they are paying me for services rendered or making a deposit to book my services,” says Musiimenta, adding that, “And in this day and age of business where none is to be trusted it is only MMM that I trust to ensure that I get my money from the client, especially where we are not at the same place to receive that money.”
Hailing from Rukungiri and a graduate of International Business from Makerere University Business School, Musimenta’s experience with MMM is that of a friend rather than a financial service. “MMM is more than an application on my phone. I view it as a trustworthy best friend. A while ago while I was managing a wedding and I ran out of cash but needed to purchase a last minute order of 100 wines that needed to be on tables before the guests arrived. Luckily I had MMM and I was able to have it cleared at the wine shop and then delivered on a boda-which I also paid using MMM. I say MMM is my savior, if it wasn’t for it I don’t know what I would do,” Musimenta narrates.
She added, “My transactions are also more convenient as I don’t have to carry cash around. In fact I feel safer since I don’t have to move with liquid cash. The people I also deal with don’t have legal documents or receipts or paper trails. MMM has therefore ensured my cash transactions are tracked and recorded by providing evidence of payment to my business partners and clients.”