Safaricom Plc, the Kenyan mobile-phone company that counts Vodafone Group Plc as its biggest investor, plans to revamp its corporate structure in the next two years to make it easier for it to expand abroad.
East Africa’s largest company by market value seeks to convert into a holding firm that will house mobile-phone towers and its financial services businesses, which will also become wholly-owned units, Chief Executive Officer Peter Ndegwa said in an interview.
The revamped structure will improve transparency about the company’s various businesses and may help to ease regulatory hurdles. This month, Safaricom is scheduled to begin operations in Ethiopia, and is awaiting approval to offer its mobile-money service M-Pesa in Africa’s second-most populated nation.
The change is so that “we run the businesses in a more sustainable way,” Ndegwa said Monday in Nairobi. “We will continue to evolve the organization and then also look for skills that allow us to run these specific divisions,” he said, adding that they may look for investors at some point for its units “but that’s not the primary driver.”
Safaricom’s shares, which have dropped 22% this year, advanced 2.1% in Nairobi on Tuesday.