KENYA – Safaricom, a telecom company, has appointed Ilanna Darcy as the interim chief financial officer, replacing Sateesh Kamath who is leaving to take up a similar role at a subsidiary of the telco’s parent company Vodafone Group Plc.

Ms Darcy has been the head of finance planning, analysis and investor relations at the Nairobi Securities Exchange-listed firm since February 2017. She previously worked for Digicel Group in South East Asia as its CFO.

“Following my earlier announcement on the appointment of Sateesh Kamath as the chief finance officer, Vodafone Business, I am pleased to announce that I have appointed Ilanna Darcy to the position of chief finance officer in an interim capacity effective July 1, 2020,” Safaricom CEO Peter Ndegwa said in a statement.

Ms Darcy is a graduate of University College Dublin and has more than 20 years’ experience, including senior finance roles at Caribbean mobile phone network and home entertainment provider Digicel Group.

“Ilanna has more than 20 years’ experience, 13 at senior level, and has worked across three continents in the retail, FMCG and telecommunications sectors,” Mr Ndegwa said.

She has been credited with automating Safaricom’s reporting processes besides marketing the telco’s stock to international investors who trade large volumes of the company’s shares on the Nairobi bourse.

When she joined Safaricom, its shares were trading at Ksh18.57 ($0.18) compared to Ksh28.9 ($0.28) at the moment.

“I would like to thank Sateesh for his continuous support through the transition period,” Mr Ndegwa said. 

In his new role, Mr Kamath will be reporting to Vodafone CEO Vinod Kumar and serving as a member of Vodafone Group Finance Leadership.

Safaricom’s net profit for the full year that ended March 2020 jumped 19.54 per cent to Ksh74.7 billion (US$747 million) on strong M-Pesa and mobile data revenue growth that offset a decline in voice and messaging (SMS) revenues.

During the period, Safaricom’s M-Pesa revenue grew by 12.6 per cent to Ksh84.44 billion (US$844.4 million) as mobile data revenue increased by 12.1 percent to Ksh40.67 billion (US$406.7 million).

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