Safaricom CEO How Safaricom CEO landed in trouble after secretly awarding Sh200 airtime to all customers

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Did you get the airtime bonus?

Former Safaricom CEO Michael Joseph has come out to reveal details of a failed PR mission where the company decided to give free airtime to all its customers.

In an interview with CNN, Joseph narrated the incident as his worst mistake in his reign as the Safaricom CEO.


He stated that when the telecommunications firm was in its early days, he decided to run a public relationships exercise where every Safaricom customer would get Sh200 in free airtime.

The secret mission, however, hit a snag after the technical system that was loading the airtime failed about a quarter of the way through.

He was forced to start again but instead of continuing from where he left off, he started from the beginning again. Now, some people got Sh400 and this happened three or four times, so some people got Sh800,” the former Safaricom boss stated.


He added that the company had a few million customers which cost it a huge amount of money, forcing them to reverse some of the transactions.

We ran the program to reverse it, so now suddenly people saw that their balances were going from 800 to 600 and so on. It was a terrible PR exercise,” he narrated.

Joseph left Safaricom in 2010 and was succeeded by Bob Collymore.

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