Safaricom has announced a partnership with Kenya Breweries Limited (KBL), a subsidiary of East African Breweries Ltd. (EABL) to implement sensors and leverage IOT to connect coolers that will be provided at no charge to retailers and outlets nationally.
Rita Okuthe, Chief Enterprise Business Officer, Safaricom said over 2,000 coolers have been connected. "We developed an IOT solution that consists of devices installed in the coolers that will have sensors which will transmit various data to a platform which generates business insights that will assist KBL to optimise the coolers. For instance, 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.
Jane Karuku, Managing Director, Kenya Breweries Limited said: "Over the years, we have been looking to bring more efficiencies in our route-to-consumer channels and we have found technology to be a critical enabler. As we move towards improving our cutting-edge technology in manufacturing and logistics, we are redoubling our efforts in our marketplace as well, to ensure that consumers enjoy our products the way they should. This project will also enable us 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."
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.
According to Safaricom it plans to leverage IOT to deliver smart water metering and animal tracking system.
The new IOT network will tap into the Safaricom existing 4G network.
The telco claims that in the first half of the financial year 2019/2020, it invested KES17-billion in infrastructure by increased network rollout and acceleration of broadband and fibre deployment.