MTN appoints new Simfy CEO

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MTN Group announced the appointment of Burak Akinci as Chief Executive Officer of Simfy (ayoba), reporting to the MTN Group Chief Digital and Fintech Officer Serigne Dioum.

Akinci will be responsible for the super app Ayoba and be based in Cape Town, MTN stated.

Akinci joins MTN from Turkcell, where he was the CEO of instant messaging platform BiP. His appointment will be effective from 1 September 2021.

He has over 20 years of experience in marketing, digital businesses and technologies, and led the expansion of the BiP platform, which MTN said has more than 30 million users.

“We are thrilled that an executive of Burak’s calibre is joining us. His appointment accelerates our work to build he largest and most valuable platforms as we target greater digital and financial inclusion across the continent,” said Dioum.

MTN announced at the end of March 2021 that it had 5.3 million monthly active Ayoba users across 20 markets. It plans to grow this to 100 million in 2025.

The company said it plans to capture more than 10% of the gross merchandise value of the digital economy in its footprint as it moves beyond the traditional telco-led Mobile Money (MoMo) offering with Ayoba.

Ayoba is an over-the-top service that does not require users to be MTN subscribers, the company explained.

MTN also said that it is targeting 100 million MoMo users by 2025, up from 46.6 million at end-March.

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