“Akiba Mkononi” – Airtel Kenya’s Savings Service Courtesy of United Bank of Africa

With the unveiling of ‘Akiba Mkononi’ – Airtel’s answer to Safaricom’s ‘Mshwari’, Mobile banking in Kenya isn’t just about sending/receiving money or making payments anymore; subscribers from Kenya’s top two mobile service providers can now save and earn interest on their hard-earned income. With as little as Ksh.5, Airtel Money subscribers can make deposits/withdrawals and earn up to 7 percent interest, which the provider claims to be one of the most attractive products currently in the country.

Both Airtel and United Bank of Africa are not major players in their respective sectors, but their partnership could as well propagate their customer bases even higher. UBA is little known to most Kenyans while despite Airtel Money having some of the most compelling transaction costs, it lags behind Mpesa which by comparison is enjoying the lion’s share of all cash transactions in Kenya done via mobile devices.

Akiba Mkononi customers can save from as little as Kshs.5 to as much as Kshs.140,000 daily on their UBA bank accounts using Airtel Money. To opt in, Airtel money customers need to dial *368# and follow prompts from their Airtel handsets.

How to register for Akiba Mkononi account.

  1. On your Airtel handset, Dial *368#
    2. Select register from the options and
    3. Enter your ID / passport / alien ID number

How to send money to your Akiba Mkononi account.

  1. Navigate to airtel money on your handset
    2. Select make payments then,
    3. Choose paybill
    4. On the available options, “Select others”
    5. Under Enter Business Name put the word “akiba”
    (exclude quotes)
    6. Put amount (minimum Kes 100)
    7. Confirm your airtel money PIN
    8. Under reference put your number in the following
    format 254733122866 (please use 254 and do not
    use + sign)

How to check balance of your Akiba Mkononi account.

  1. On your Airtel handset, Dial *368#
    2. Choose ‘Mobile banking’ option, Reply with 1
    3. Enter your PIN
    4. Choose ‘Check Balance’ option, Reply with 1
    5. Your balance will be displayed on your screen.

How to send money from your Akiba Mkononi account to Airtel Money.

  1. On your Airtel handset, Dial *368#
    2. Choose ‘Mobile banking’ option, Reply with 1
    3. Enter PIN
    4. Choose ‘Transfer to AirtelMoney’ option, Reply with 2
    5. Enter amount to transfer.
    6. Enter your PIN


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