Are you still buying those overpriced Safaricom data bundles? If yes, you must be rich.
Cheaper bundles have been available on Facebook for many months now. Some of these cost nearly half the price. The adverts are posted on popular groups such as Soko Kuu and Soko Nyeusi, and they look something like this.
Many have wondered where the sellers get these cheap bundles, but it’s quite simple actually.
They use the old tried and proven business tactic of buying in bulk and selling in small quantities, and exploit Safaricom’s own Sambaza Internet.
For instance Safaricom sells 8GB at Sh3999. The cost per 1GB is therefore Sh500.
From the rates provided in the screenshot above, the sellers offers 1GB at Sh600. That’s a cool Sh100 in profit. The profit margin is much better if the seller for example bought 25GB at Sh11,499. Instead of Sh100 profit per GB, it will be Sh140.
However, for the past few weeks, there have been some extremely cheap bundles on offer. Prices are so low that many people have branded the sellers conmen.
For instance, 1GB is being offered for about Sh250. After sending cash to the seller, he/she sends you a 15 digit code which you then send to 440 and receive your bundles. They expire after a month.
If you’ve ever bought a mobile phone at a Safaricom Shop, this process may sound familiar. The 15 digit code is in real sense a mobile phone’s IMEI number. When you buy a phone from Safaricom, they give you free bundles; either 500mbs or 1GB depending on how expensive the phone is. You send the phone’s IMEI number to 440 and receive your free bundles.
So, where are these ‘Bundles Mwitu’ sellers getting ‘unused’ IMEI numbers? Well, good question.
Perhaps that’s what fuelled the rumour on Social media yesterday that Safaricom has involved the NIS in tracking down their ‘mole’, in the process arresting some sellers. Nothing has been confirmed yet.
We’ll have to wait and see if the ‘promotional codes’ run out.
On the other ‘bundles mwitu’ business, Safaricom has admitted that it is not illegal, but highly discourages the practise as it exposes people to fraudsters. Here’s a statement.
“Safaricom has not licensed any third party providers to resell our data bundles. While we are aware that there are some providers who claim to offer discounted data bundles to their clients, we have not initiated any partnerships of that kind. We would advise that customers either purchase their data bundles directly from us or verify that their vendor is authorized to sell legitimate Safaricom services prior to investing any money in these services.”
They have further reduced the number of times a single person can sambaza from 50 to 20 times a month.