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Swedish communication technology and services giant, Ericsson (ERIC - Free Report) has tied up with Vodafone's M-Pesa in an initiative to make mobile money payments and cash collection easier and more straightforward.

The integrated payment solution is intended to simplify the process of paying for safe water.  This joint effort will begin with the first deployment connecting M-Pesa with the growing network of Grundfos safe water kiosks spread across Kenya and Tanzania. Other countries are expected to follow soon.

Grundfos' intelligent and connected water kiosks dispense safe drinking water in developing countries. However, about 50,000 water supply points have been unsuccessful across rural Africa, mostly due to shortage of funds and capacity for operations and maintenance. The Ericsson-Vodafone tie-up is intended to deal with this critical challenge through efficient cash collection, lower cash management risks and reduced overhead costs. This will offer a scalable safe water solution.

The initiative will build the much-needed connections between wallet providers and enterprises, thus representing a major leap forward for the mobile money ecosystem.

Late last month, Ericsson entered into a partnership with HomeSend. The deal is aimed at accelerating the adoption of international remittances through mobile phones across emerging markets. Together, the two entities are aimed at delivering a cost-effective, prompt and simple way to financial service providers to connect the HomeSend global money transfer hub with Ericsson's mobile money offering around the world.

ERICSSON LM ADR Price and Consensus


Ericsson’s technology has been enabling telecom players and financial services providers to adapt to the rapidly changing landscape, and expand the financial services available across the world.

However, reduced consumer telecom spending has been playing a spoilsport for Ericsson. Also, stiff competition and currency fluctuations have been hurting this Zacks Rank #4 (Sell) company’s performance.Ericsson is also grappling with waning sales in some key end-markets, slowdown in 4G deployment in China and ongoing industry consolidation among customers and major rivals.

Stocks to Consider

Some better-ranked stocks in the same space include InterDigital, Inc. (IDCC - Free Report) , ARC Group Worldwide, Inc. (ARCW - Free Report) and ViaSat Inc. (VSAT - Free Report) . You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

InterDigital, sporting a Zacks Rank #1, has an impeccable earnings history over the trailing four quarters, beating estimates all through. It has a striking positive average surprise of 82.4%.

ARC Group and ViaSat both carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). ARC Group’s earnings are projected to grow at the rate of 75% in the current fiscal year, far ahead of its peers.

Viasat deals in advanced digital satellite telecommunications and other networking and signal processing equipment, and has a striking expected long-term growth rate of almost 17.8%, compared with an industry average of 11.8%.

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