• The connected coolers will be provided free of charge to retailers and outlets countrywide.
• Rita said that over 2,000 coolers are already connected.
Safaricom announced on Thursday a partnership with Kenya Breweries Limited to connect and enhance its coolers.
The connected coolers are wired with sensors that leverage on the Internet of things (IoT) – the inter-networking of “smart” devices that collect and exchange data. They will be provided free of charge to retailers and outlets countrywide.
Jane Karuku, KBL's managing director, said that technology will be a critical enabler to bringing more efficiencies in their route-to-consumer channels.
"This project will also enable us to extend our capability to track and invest in coolers and we hope that our existing products and innovations will reach consumers with minimal cost, delays, and wastage,” Karuku said.
Commenting on the launch, Rita Okuthe, Chief Enterprise Business Officer, Safaricom PLC, said, “We developed an IoT solution that consists of devices installed in the coolers that will have sensors that will transmit various data to a platform that generates business insights that will assist KBL to optimise the coolers," she said.
She also added that EABL distributors can now tell where their assets are located if the assets are in use or not (on/off), whether the assets are at the optimal temperature and how many times the door of the cooler is opened.
Rita said that over 2,000 coolers are already connected.
Besides the connected coolers project, EABL is already partnering Safaricom in driving a cashless payment model among its distributors, who now transact on M-PESA when dealing with retailers.
Looking ahead to 2020, Safaricom aims to be a digital partner of choice for businesses by providing solutions that improve the efficiency with which they do business, saving them money and therefore creating additional value for their end-users.
Safaricom is also planning to bring valuable solutions by leveraging on IoT to deliver smart water metering and animal tracking system. The new Internet of Things (IoT) network will tap into the Safaricom existing 4G network.
In the first half of the financial year 2019-20, Safaricom invested Sh17 billion in infrastructure by increased network roll out and acceleration of broadband and fibre deployment.