What Are Safaricom and Kenya Power Smart Meters, and Installation Roadmap

Courtesy of Tuco

Safaricom is diversifying and adding one more service to its portfolio, and it is connecting electricity to your home.

The telecoms provider, which has the majority share of the voice, data and mobile money transfer market, is partnering with Kenya Power to supply smart electricity meters.

Kenya Power is expected to earn revenues of up to KES 71 billion in eight years, but will split 75 percent in Safaricom to enable a full transfer of smart meters to Kenya Power.

Smart meters are devices developed to help Kenya Power reduce the losses experienced in its current technology, solving weaknesses from leaks to illegal connections.

The smart smart system will cost Safaricom KES 31 billion, which will be used to provide these smart meter feeders, transformers and distribution consumers whose usage exceeds 200 kilowatts.

The system will be able to read meters remotely, track electricity uses and even power outages.

These connections will be made in three phases, allowing Safaricom to build the infrastructure that Kenya Power will leverage to enable the connection in the future.

However, Kenya Power executives feel that the 25% stake they are taking in this deal only favors Safaricom, and will likely seek a change in terms to better share once the deal is finalized.

“Safaricom will have recovered its full cost in year four, hence the need for a more in-depth discussion on the share of revenue growth ratio,” Martin Mutuku, General Manager Business Strategy, Kenya Power.

The system will be able to read meters remotely, track electricity uses and even power outages.

System losses experienced by old power grids, substations, homes and businesses, combined with theft and vandalism of Kenya Power’s infrastructure, have hurt the company.

The solution on the table now is to use Safaricom’s high-speed internet connection to enable intelligent management of how energy is distributed and tracked.

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The installation will begin in the areas bordering the Mombasa Road in Nairobi, and as mentioned in Kenya Power’s preliminary report, it will be carried out in businesses and homes that consume more than 200Kwh each month.

“This solution is expected to result in a sea change in Kenya Power’s current financial situation by reducing energy losses,” Kenya Power board documents. read.

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