The value of unclaimed Safaricom customer loyalty awards, popularly known as bonga points, has for the first time in three years registered a 4.7 percent drop hinting at amplified redeeming by the telco’s clients.
The value of unclaimed Safaricom bonga points dropped to Ksh. 3.85 billion in the year ending March 2019 compared to Ksh. 4.04 billion registered in a similar period last year. The telco has attributed the drop to its decision to expand its redemption options which were previously limited to Safaricom products alone.
“We decided to extend redemption options instead of limiting customers to only Safaricom products. Customers now have more options and last financial year we did a lot more in publicising these options,” Safaricom said in a statement.
According to a news report by the Business Daily, Safaricom’s “Bonga everywhere” campaign greatly contributed to the registered drop with the telco’s customers now having the option to shop, buy air tickets and fuel their cars using bonga points. The Business Daily similarly reports that the points are accounted for as a liability or deferred income in the telco’s books and only recognized as revenue once they are redeemed by customers. Prepaid airtime sold to customers is similarly held as deferred revenue until the customer uses it.
The telco awards one bonga point to its customers for every Ksh. 10 they spend on the network. Once the points accumulate, they tie up revenue for the telco until redeemed with customers having the option to redeem them for airtime, Short Messaging Services and Safaricom merchandise.
“Enterprise business customers earn loyalty points upon achievement of their revenue targets and the accumulated amounts are only redeemable after the maturity of the underlying revenue contracts with the group,” the telco says in its annual report.
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