Safaricom’s “Rudi” (Return) Offer: The Empire Strikes Back!

Tsk Tsk. It had to happen. It was only a matter of time. The empire had to strike back! Safaricom, Kenya’s largest mobile network has just launched an offer that rewards its customers with incrementally lower calling and sms rates for larger airtime top-ups. This is an obvious counter-move to Orange Kenya and Zain Kenya who recently announced highly competitive tariffs and offers to win more subscribers for their mobile networks. The latest Safaricom offer has already earned a nickname – “Rudi”, which means “return” in kiswahili. The nickname is interesting in that it is the opposite of Zain Kenya’s “Vuka” tariff which means “to cross” or “move away” in Kiswahili.

I do not have the official word on the new Safaricom offer and it has’nt event come out in the media yet so the authenticity of the following information obtained from a posting on the Skunkworks Kenya mailing list needs to be verified. Whatever the case, once again, its the Kenyan consumer who is winning! Let the tariff wars continue! —

Dear all,

Safaricom is pleased to introduce Jibambie- Choose your Call Rate promotion. The promotion will run for 8 weeks starting from 16th October,2008 to 14th December, 2008. Pre Pay subscribers will therefore enjoy discounted call rates and SMS rates based on the value of their top-up.

Promotion mechanics

To enjoy the promotion and choose the discounted Call Rates of choice, Pre Pay subscribers will receive discounted call rates based on the value of their top-up as per the table below. Special Jibambie Vouchers will be used therefore the old vouchers will not qualify.

Top up Value (Kshs)On- net Voice Call Rate (per Second)On- net SMS
Bamba 20

Kshs 8

Kshs 3.50
Bamba 50

Kshs 7

Kshs 3.50
Bamba 100

Kshs 6

Kshs 3

Kshs 5

Kshs 3

Kshs 4

Kshs 2
1000 and above

Kshs 3

Kshs 2

Note: Calls to local networks will cost Kshs 15/-, SMS to other local networks will cost Kshs 5/- SMS to international networks will cost Ksh 10/-

Summary of Business Rules

1.       The promotion is only available on Pre Pay and excludes the following Pre Pay tariffs – M-PESA Prepaid and  Simu Ya Jamii

2.       The promotion will give subscribers discounted on-net call rates based on the value of their top-up

3.       The participating airtime denominations include Bamba 20,Bamba 50,Bamba 100, 250,500 & 1000 and all Electronic Voucher Distribution (EVD) PIN-based denominations including 20,50,100,250,400,500,800,1000,1200,2500, 5000 & 10,000.

-         Standard Chartered Electronic vouchers,i.e. 400,800 & 1200 will enjoy discounted call rates the same as 250,500 & 1000 respectively

-         EVD voucher for 2500,5000 & 10,000 will enjoy the same discounted call rates as Ksh 1000/- top-up

4.       The discounted call rates will be communicated on the card face and also subscribers will be notified via top-up response messages of the discounted call rate they are enjoying. (Plus Tariff Rate)

5.       The discounted call rates will be determined by the last qualifying top-up e.g. if one had topped up with a voucher of 250/- and was calling at 5/- per minute, if they top up again with a Bamba 100  they will no longer be charged 5/- but 6/- for on-net calls.

6.       Any airtime balance at the time of a qualifying top-up will enjoy the discounted call rates e.g. if a subscriber had 50/- remaining in his account and he tops up with 20/- he will have a cumulative balance of 70/- but will enjoy discounted rates of 8/- per on-net call as the 20/- is the valid promotion top up.

7.       The discounted call rates will apply throughout the day for the entire duration of the call.

8.       Bonga Points accumulation will apply as per existing terms and conditions.

9.       PIN-based third party top-ups are included and the discounted call rates will accrue to the MSISDN receiving the top-up and not the one originating.

10.    Sambaza, M-PESA,Ongea24/7,PayM8 and other PINless top-ups will NOT qualify for the discounted call rates. E.g. if a customer topped up with a card of 20/- they will make discounted calls at 8/- per minute. Should someone Sambaza 80/- to them,their discounted call rate will not change as they will still make calls at 8/- per minute despite their new balance being 100/-

11.    During the balance enquiry via SMS/USSD the information displayed will indicate the Plus Tariff name as follows:

a)     Plus 20

b)     Plus 50

c)      Plus 100

d)     Plus 250

e)     Plus 500

f)      Plus 1000

Those who do not qualify for the Jibambie Promotion due to the method of top up (e.g. Old vouchers or PINless top ups) can continue to enjoy the Good Morning/Evening promotion. However once they top up they will be moved onto the Plus tariffs based on their top up value.

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  1. October 15, 2008 at 9:43 am — Reply

    smart to reward/lock in/higher revenue/value customers.

  2. October 15, 2008 at 9:59 am — Reply

    Banke, for sure – they are obviously planning to keep their premium prepaid market. Just also found out that this offer is for real – more specifically, its called “Jibambie”.

  3. October 15, 2008 at 10:17 am — Reply

    this is a very interesting approach. now if only i was in pre-paid.

    whatever happens to post paid customers?

  4. October 15, 2008 at 10:30 am — Reply

    eleet, good point – they should have extended some unique offer to post-paid customers. For instance, the more you talk, you get double bonga points!

  5. Jefftassy
    October 18, 2008 at 1:26 am — Reply

    Another one from safaricom, not a bad idea though. Why not have a flat calling/sms rate not withstanding the amount one topped up? If you go with Orange or zain ideas, you’ll find that their customer are most likely to more perseverance with them tarrifs far than we

  6. Abraham
    October 19, 2008 at 5:15 am — Reply

    Its is a great offer, but this looks like it only favours the rich, i do suggest that you have a flat rate of say 5/= irespective of the amount you top up with.

  7. Carol
    October 21, 2008 at 3:25 am — Reply

    Maybe they should have rewarded the common mwananchi whom i believe is the bulk subsciber of their services. Say,top up with 20bob and talk for Kshs. 3 per minute!

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