Tag Archives: banking the unbanked

2017 is the Year Mobile Service Operators Became Banks

By | November 4, 2017

South African business headlines read MTN takes on Vodacom for title of Africa’s biggest digital bank and usher in a whole new era for banking and finance on the mobile platform. Having watched this space impatiently for more than a decade, seeing this was a landmark worth noting. The number of mobile-money customers in the… Read More »

Bridging East Africa’ formal – informal financial services divide

By | January 9, 2017

Kenya’s formal inclusion looks pretty, the financial inclusion industry has been has been great at talking up its achievements over the past 10 years. Here, 75.3% of Kenyans are now formally included, a 50.3% increase from 19 years ago. Official statistics on mobile phone penetration is up to 80.5% of the population and there is general… Read More »

Customer-Centric Business Model Design for Financial Inclusion

By | October 5, 2015

The Challenge Digital financial services (DFS) seek to bridge the chasm between the structures, policies and institutions of the formal economy, and the cash intensive informal and rural economy. Current day approaches tend to take the perspective of the service providers when assessing the market opportunity and the needs of the intended customers. And so… Read More »

Lessons for Formal Finance from Informal financial services

By | August 21, 2015

  On one of my many field explorations on rural financial services,  I found out, that for one mama biashara, as soon as payment checks in, she withdraws all her funds from her local coffee SACCO account, and spreads it out via micro-deposits across her more than 5 local informal savings groups (from right to… Read More »

3 Myths of Financial Inclusion

By | August 9, 2015

This article has been co-authored with Michael Kimani @pesa_africa Banking the unbanked is very popular right now, as financial inclusion is seen as a key milestone on the path to development. In parallel, a plethora of “cashless” or “cash lite” solutions have begun permeating the cash intensive informal economy. These can be broadly described as… Read More »