April 24, 2017 / 7:59 AM / 4 months ago

UPDATE 4-Kenya's Safaricom says network services restored after outage

(Updates with resolution of outage)

NAIROBI, April 24 (Reuters) - Safaricom, Kenya's biggest telecoms network operator, said on Monday most of its services had been restored after a network failure earlier in the day.

The firm, which is 40 percent owned by Britain's Vodafone , operates the M-Pesa mobile money transfer service, used for transactions worth billions of shillings daily by retail customers, businesses and banks.

Safaricom said its network suffered an outage at 0930 local time (0630 GMT) and the situation was fully resolved at 4.30 pm local time (1330 GMT).

"Most voice, data, SMS, M-Pesa and enterprise services are available," Safaricom said in a statement.

Services, such as calling and text messaging, were being restarted by noon local time. The company attributed the outage to a "failure" on the core network but did not give any details.

"Our businesses suffered because our customers couldn't reach us," said Peter Njoroge, a taxi driver in downtown Nairobi.

The company last suffered a major outage two years ago when the network went down in Nairobi, a source at the company said, declining to say when it last had a nationwide failure.

Safaricom, Kenya's biggest listed company, has 27.7 million subscribers, or 71.2 percent of the market.

Safaricom's shares closed trading on Monday at 19.10 shillings, down from Friday's closing price of 19.15 shillings. ($1 = 103.2000 Kenyan shillings) (Reporting by Duncan Miriri and George Obulutsa; Editing by Greg Mahlich)

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