Volume 1 | Issue II
                                                                 November 2009


Welcome Note

                                                              Mobile Money Afric...
Advisory Board Membership

Thank you for your wonderful Job with the E-
Mag but I have issues with the composition o...
Emmanuel Okoegwale,

Len Pienaar,CEO,FNB mCommerce

          he use of informal mechanisms has for a long    the 4,300 FNB ATMs across ...
05 November, Johannesburg, South Africa -                initiatives to ensure a better understanding of the
FNB eMoney Pr...
“send money”

                             FNB eMoney Product House CEO,
Zain Zap, Postal Corporation sign partnership agreement
Zain Kenya has signed a partnership agreement with Postal Corporat...
Product of the month
9,500 kilometres submarine telecommunications             $70 million. The world's largest cell-phone maker,
cable laid un...

 Postal Networks
 and Mobile Money
     Use of Post office networks improves financial inclusion
all over the country, including procedures and             The Universal Postal Union (UPU, an United
means to handle in a...
MobiCash was born out of the need to
                                                          develop a convenient, secur...
effective deployment of many mobile payment services. This retail context problem is compounded by the fact that SMS and
accessible from one end of the country to the
Q:Could you provide a brief overview of the           other - a laptop bank....
tasks, like seeking greater loan portfolios or
reinvesting costs saved from automation.
Hannes van Rensburg
Factor Shaka Mobile is a niche market wireless telecom         Eco-system
targeting Diaspora Africans with Mobile Money an...
Lessons from Phillipines
                                                        by John Owens

Please share with Africa...
tremendous potential to provide outreach to
anyone with a phone, they cannot provide greater
access to credit or offer ful...
banked. Organizations, local governments and
                                                     (micro)finance instituti...
environment. Through research STRO has                    module. Users can publish offers and wants for
developed and tes...
                                          WASHINGTON DC & DENVER, October 30,
Foundation, as well as through Western Union              Through Western Union's Our World, Our Family®
Agent Giving Circ...

Number One         IN


MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November  Edition
MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November  Edition
MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November  Edition
MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November  Edition
MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November  Edition
MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November  Edition
MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November  Edition
MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November  Edition
MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November  Edition
MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November  Edition
MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November  Edition
MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November  Edition
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MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November Edition


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MobileMoneyAfrica Magazine - November Edition

  1. 1. Volume 1 | Issue II November 2009 Interviews Benjamin Lyon - FrontlineSMS : Credit John Owens - Mabs Philipines Patrick Ngabonziza Gordon - Mobicash Hannes van Rensburg - Fundamo Post Office Networks and Mobile Money Piet Biemans - CEO, BOFIB BV www.shakamobile.com
  2. 2. www.mobilemoneyafrica.com Welcome Note Mobile Money Africa Directory Update Accells. Affinity Global service.Aikku.AitecAfrica .AmaranteConsulting. Amazon.Anam.Atom.Boku.Celpay.CitadelAdvantage.Clairmail.Comviv a.Devifi.E- Fulusi.EdgarDunn.EserveGlobal.EstelTechnologies.FronlineSMS:Credi t.Fundamo.GenesisAnalytics.Globa.Google.HyperWallet.IDTEurope.in switch.iPaystation.Isys.Kabira.Luup.Macalla.Manamtech.Margento.mC hek.Mcom.mFoundry.Mi-Pay .MicroSave.MobiCash.Mobile- Financial.Mobile Suica.MobileMoneyCanada.MobiPay.Monitise.mPayconnect.MTN Mobile Money.Mukuru.Nokia.Osaifu –Keitai.Paradigm Solutions & Consulting.Paymate.PayPal Mobile. PesaPal.PINWise.POFIB.Mpesa.ShakaMobile.SwapMobile.Sybase36 5.TagAttitude.Tagsme.Tranglo.TransferTO.Trivnet.TxtnPay.Ukash.Utiba .Valimo.Vipera.VIVOTECH.VoiceCash.Western Union.Wizzit.Zain Zap.Zenith Bank.Zong.Zpesa. Emmanuel Okoegwale, Thank you for making Mobile Money Africa – Number Editor. one in Africa. Emmanuel@mobilemoneyafrica.com Join us as a founding member and organization as Welcome to Mobile Money Africa, The continent's Mobile Money moves to the next level of Continent wide leading portal for Mobile Financial Inclusion with industry association (In –Formation) Send an email to News, contributions, events and interviews from Kwest@mobilemoneyAfrica.com to know more leading players across Africa and beyond. The Mobile channel is the next frontier for an all inclusive financial Look out for the next issue which focuses on mobile systems for Africans in coming years. payment technologies We welcome all stakeholders on board: Telecommunications, Financial Institutions, Micro Send us news, events, technology roll - outs, Finance Institutions, regulators and independent advertorials and special features for the December service providers in Africa and Beyond. edition Cheers Emmanuel Okoegwale, Events and Marketing Editor. West Ehkahtor kwest@mobilemoneyafrica.com Business Development, sales and Adverts Easter Arekameh Aeaster@mobilemoneyafrica.com MobileMoneyAfrica is published monthly by GO MOBILE NIG 4b Adekunle Kuye street, Surulere, Lagos - Nigeria. All materials in Creative Consultant this publication are covered by copyright. The inclusion or Chike Orji SOFTEPEN exclusion of any does not mean that the publisher advocates or 08062186706 rejects its use. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form- electronically, mechanically, Web Consultant photocopying or otherwise in whole or in part without written Mark Oppenneer Ethnos project permission of the publisher. All correspondence is assumed to be USA intended for publication unless clearly stated otherwise. 009 - 234- 1-2212869 009-234-803-08-18868 Advisory Board Amaka Agbakoba Ofume, Former Senior World Bank Consultant. Meneske Gencer, Director - Mpayconnect, Inc. Aiaze Mitha, Director - Amarante Consulting LLc. Avijit Nanda, President - Timesofmoney India Graham Orodje, CEO - TaurusMobile Follow us on Jeppe Ramlau - Hansen, - VP - Clickatell
  3. 3. INBOX Advisory Board Membership Thank you for your wonderful Job with the E- Mag but I have issues with the composition of the MMA board which is not reflective of CreditSMS claim that sms works on all African representation. Are you saying mobile phone cannot be right. Many CDMA Africans do not have expertise in this field? I do not offer SMS and I wonder how those disagree strongly. class of subscribers will use your application. Bouaka Edwin. Ahmed Abiodun Achimota - Accra Garki – Abuja FCT Nigeria MMA: Thanks for your comments. The board is still in its infancy and two of our principal MMA members are actually Nigerians. Amaka You may reach CreditSMS via email to clarify Ofume and Graham Orodje. We are still the proposed countries of operations at actively seeking for experts in this field. info@creditsms.org. Western Union Interview: Sending Love Home Your write up on how Africans send money is According to your interview with the VP, very educative and useful, however, you Western Union, the firm is planning to launch quoted the dollar currency for passport into Mobile remittances like the Banks or issuance cost in Nigeria. Nigerian uses Naira mobile operators. Are they going to be and not the dollar. holding money deposits like the Banks too? Awe Babafemi. Thomas Anderson. Lagos – Nigeria Amsterdam – Holland. The chart used in the article was credited to I had been wondering for so long why I am Gamos.It is actually Gamos uk.Please make not able to send money across countries in necessary corrections. west Africa using Western Union. Your interview is enlightening and I hope that the Thomas Ken governments will address the regulatory Oxford. issues raised by Mr Fellahi of Western Union. CreditSMS. MMA. The dream to launch Micro Finance using Thank you for observation. The Magazine is SMS is quite laudable and I Had visited the for global audience and the use of dollar is site but no list of countries in Africa where it deliberate. Thank you. will be operational. Andrew Pouka. Monrovia - Liberia. www.mobilemoneyafrica.com November 2009 | 4
  4. 4. Emmanuel Okoegwale, Editor M ina, a Ghanaian Lady that I met on my recent trip from Accra, the capital city of conditions like the large commercial Bank ( LCB) Ghana to Aflao, the border town with to a different type of customer .Some even went Republic of Togo, was travelling to conduct further to style their offices to look imposing and withdrawal transactions with her ATM card and as intimidating and located in the major cities like nine other cards belonging to friends. The the LCB, far away from their potential and distance to Aflao from her rustic roadside village targeted market. Rather than close the gap, the is close to 45 kilometers and return trip will MFI's by design are widening it. consume three hours of her productive time as a school teacher. She said 'I do this every week For the unbanked African, with few options for and also help my friends but I don't know if I can formal financial inclusion, out of sight is out of continue this way. She continued 'If by the end of mind. They continue to patronize the informal the year, no Bank stations an ATM in her locality channel which is unreliable and unsafe. While or open a Branch, I will resort to keeping my promoting this imbalances, the LCB are slow to money under my pillow. At least I don't incur take on innovations that can significantly change charges to make withdrawals from under my bed'. this pattern and are quick to muscle in any That is the typical scenario across Africa's rural perceived incursions into what they think will be population. She might end up adding to the their bread and butter forever, the unbanked statistics of the previously banked by the year populations. end. The games changers are here. Regulations In Africa, in bid to turn in massive profits and across the world is changing and favoring the assume a continental Player status, Banks are entities that can make it happen. In Kenya, while focused on the Big picture:Africa, while neglecting the Banks are still importing security doors and their backyards where credible statistics has window blinds to set up 'profit centres' Bank shown that 70% percent of the citizens live in the Branches, Safaricom through Mpesa is busy rural and semi Urban areas. The Banks are signing up agents. engaged in a Grand prix like race to breast the While the telcos are promoting a Bank in your tape into many African countries. pocket strategy, The Banks are busy pushing the crowds through their doors. Last update on With the ear bursting sermons of Banking the banking statistics in Nigeria, shows there are unbanked in Africa and yet the attitude of the 22,000 people to a Bank Branch. Banks are a direct opposite, it seems to be fashionable to sing the song but never dancing to With the new thinking amongst African Financial it. While some Large Rural local governments in and telecommunications regulators, the bridge is some parts of Nigeria are without a Bank branch, closing on the Financial institutions that are not a high street in Lagos of 1.8 kilometer stretch has ready to use what the Left Behinds already have, 8 branches of a particular Bank which translates the Mobile Phone. Little snippets from the Bank / into a bank branch for every 180 meters. These Telcos, war front capital – Kenya, The Crying are same Banks with aggressive African roll outs, Babies are the Banks and the winner is Mpesa exporting same disconnections. with Seven million subscribers .Will the likes of FrontlineSMS:Credit, MTN Mobile Money, Wizzit Governments in her wisdom, thought Micro in South Africa, Txtpay in Ghana,Mi-pay in sierra Finance Institutions will bridge the gap but they leaone and Tagattitude in Nigeria, be able to too fell into the large commercial Banks trap by replicate the Mpesa challenge? Only time will tell modeling their services to be exact or look alike. but for sure, the game changers are here. They issue same standard KYC forms and www.mobilemoneyafrica.com November 2009 | 6
  5. 5. Len Pienaar,CEO,FNB mCommerce T he use of informal mechanisms has for a long the 4,300 FNB ATMs across South Africa.” time been the traditional means of remitting The Sender sends money to the receiver`s money from one family member to the other cellphone number. The receiver gets an automated in Africa. Generally, the sender would have to travel SMS telling them how much money has been sent to a bus/ taxi rank to give a driver the money, along and instructing them how to get their money. The with the physical address and name of the receiver. receiver will need to dial a number from their Although trends have changed, there are still a lot cellphone and follow the instructions on the easy to of people in Africa that do not have bank accounts. use menu. The receiver can then request a The receiver would have to wait, in some instances temporary ATM PIN to withdraw the money from the days, for the bus or taxi to deliver the money to ATM, without the need of a bank card or bank them. account. “The service addresses a number of access To ensure the money safely reaches the receiver, barriers to banking. It`s affordable, transactions are the sender would get charged a certain fee, performed in real-time, it`s convenient and depending on the amount sent. In most instances accessible to any receiver with a cellphone – which the system worked, but what does this do for the millions of people in Africa are already using,” says development of African communities asks Yolande van Wyk. van Wyk, CEO of FNB eMoney Product House, “Banking strategies that reach out to the entire South Africa. community will eventually lead to the unbanked The need to assist communities to develop access having greater access to financial services,” says to banking, financial services and remittance van Wyk. instruments has seemingly become a matter of “With Send Money and other innovations from urgency. FNB, we are committing to bridging the gap in our “Access barriers to banking have traditionally been communities. Through the use of innovative caused by the high cost of banking together with the technologies we believe that we`ll be able to lack of banking facilities in remote areas, trust and significantly change the way people manage their concerns around the ease of use of banking money,” says van Wyk. services,” says van Wyk. FNB`s Send Money is currently active in South With innovative banking technologies, banking has Africa. The bank is looking at expanding the service become simpler, convenient, cheaper and more across borders to other African countries where the accessible to people from all walks of life. bank has a presence. This includes Botswana, Zambia, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland. “FNB`s Send Money is one of many innovations by FNB mCommerce aimed at bridging the gap between the banked and unbanked,” says van Wyk. “It allows FNB South Africa's banking customers to send money to their families and friends. The receiver does not need to have a bank card or a bank account to access the money sent to them, they simply withdraw their money from one of www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 8
  6. 6. 05 November, Johannesburg, South Africa - initiatives to ensure a better understanding of the FNB eMoney Product House CEO, Yolande van sending and receiving process. Wyk today announced the launch of Send Money - Part of the attraction to the payment service is that it an instant solution for FNB customers to transfer makes use of the cellphone. This device, which is money to anyone with a South African cellphone. being used by millions of South According to FinScope, 3.8 million people send Africans, is closing the distance between sender money to family and friends living within South and receiver. Through the use of the cellphone we Africa annually. Most family members to whom are bringing innovative payment services to money is sent receives it in cash. Now FNB consumers from all walks of life. customers can send money instantly to anyone who has a South African cellphone. The receiver With Send Money and other innovations from FNB, does not need to have a bank card or a bank we are committing to bridging the gap between the account to access the money sent to them, they banked and unbanked. Through the use of simply withdraw their money from one of the 4,300 innovative technologies we believe that we`ll be FNB ATMs across the country. able to significantly change the way people manage their money, says Len Pienaar, FNB FNB's Send Money offers money-senders an mCommerce CEO. To access their money, the instant and secure money transfer service, as well receiver will need to dial *120*277# from their as offering receivers various electronic transaction cellphone and follow the instructions on the easy- options, says van Wyk. The receiver gets an to-use menu. automated SMS telling them how much money has been sent and instructing them how to get the Receivers who do not have air time to request their money. The receiver can then request a temporary temporary ATM PIN can make use of a free number ATM PIN to withdraw the money at service FNB *130*277# which, when dialed from their cellphone, ATMs without the need of a bank card. will enable them to buy air time with the money received. Prior to the launch of Send Money, we conducted research on the challenges being faced by From 22 November 2009 until 15 May 2010 there consumers when sending money. Some of the will be no charges to send money, and receivers will concerns were about whether the money would get be able to check their balances and send money on to its destination,how long it would take to get there to someone else free of charges. and the costs associated with sending money, says van Wyk. For more information contact: These concerns derive from the fact that money sent is for basic needs such as food and groceries. Ntokozo Ndlovu FNB customers can send money instantly, at any time of the day or even at night, without having to Vuma Reputaiton Management wait for the branches to open the next day. We are Contact: + 27 (0) 82 501 3811 providing our customers with a secure way to send Email: ntokozo@vumacom.co.za money to loved ones when they need it. It is also simple to use,? says van Wyk. There are no bank charges to withdraw at ATMs so Steve Higgins receivers will get all of the money sent to them. FNB Corporate Communications Withdrawals can be made in full, or receivers may choose to withdraw part of the money and keep the Contact: +27 (0) 11 371 7854 rest in a Wallet for future use. Email: shiggins@fnb.co.za In addition, receivers will have access to other services with the money in the Wallet. They can buy prepaid airtime for themselves or someone else, send money on to someone else, check their balances and shop online using Cell Pay Point, a service that allows the receiver to pay for online shopping using their cellphone. FNB has put in place a number of consumer education www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 9
  7. 7. FNB “send money” Launch FNB eMoney Product House CEO, Yolande van Wyk www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 10
  8. 8. Zain Zap, Postal Corporation sign partnership agreement Zain Kenya has signed a partnership agreement with Postal Corporation that will enable its customers to register for the company's ZAP services through postal outlets. Speaking at the launch the postmaster, retired major general Hussein Ali said that the partnership agreement designate postal corporation as an agent for the ZAP branch where they will accept cash deposits and make payments on behalf of ZAIN Kenya money transfer service customers. "Under this agency, Postal Corporation will on behalf of Zain Kenya undertake the registration of new zap brand service at various postal outlets and a commission of sh50 per customer," he said. He went on to say that the corporation will facilitate cash-in and cash-out transaction where it will earn a commission of sh10 and sh15 per transaction. Zain Kenya Managing Director Rene Meza said that using the ZAP services customers can now deposit or withdraw money from their accounts through Posta offices. "Customers can now access zap cash transfer services in at least 14 outlets in Nairobi and 800 postal offices countrywide before the end of November" Meza said adding that the corporations strong presence especially in the rural and peri-urban areas was a wise move. Meza said that more than Sh1 billion has been transferred through the ZAP service since it was launched early this year adding that they were in talks with other financial institutions to increase the penetration of the service in the rural areas. “Posta outlets will augment the existing 3,000 agents countrywide, a move that is expected to deepen the penetration of the eight month old mobile commerce service. ZAP customers can now sign for the Zain services by sending an SMS with word zap to 455 after which they will be provided with a vital bank account. The account will enable them use their mobile phones in as much the same way as debit cards. Western Union cuts ties with its Riyadh partner RIYADH — Eight Western Union centers in Riyadh have been shut after the money transfer services provider terminated its contract with a local partner, threatening jobs. Director of Corporate Communications Elena Shalneva confirmed the company had closed the so-called agent locations after cutting ties with Mohammed A. Al-Fanih and Partners for Exchange. Shalneva, speaking from Germany, said the closures would not affect business in Saudi Arabia as Western Union already has two major agents, Al-Bilad Bank and Samba — operating in more than 130 locations. These strategic relationships, she said, provide other services besides money transfer. Shalneva played down the closures, claiming it was “part of the normal course of business. “The closure of a handful of locations that were opened by the third agent will not affect our business,” she added. She stressed that regulatory authorities in the Kingdom had no influence on Western Union's decision to close the agents down. Meanwhile, Shalneva confirmed Western Union was all set to announce new products and services for the Gulf region including Saudi Arabia. Kuwait-based mobile network operator Zain has confirmed it has teamed up with the company to deliver joint mobile money transfer services in MENA countries through its Zap platform, according to a report seen by Arab News on Wednesday. The Zap service already gives Zain customers access to a full range of transactional services from their mobile phones. Customers can manage bank accounts, top-up or transfer airtime, and move money to businesses, friends and family. Western Union currently serves millions of people in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and South Asia with more than 278,000 agent locations in about 160 countries. More than 270 banks and postal institutions across the world are Western Union agents. The Kingdom is home to about nine million foreign workers, many of them using Western Union to send money back home. www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 11
  9. 9. Product of the month
  10. 10. 9,500 kilometres submarine telecommunications $70 million. The world's largest cell-phone maker, cable laid under the sea by Second National Nokia Corp, made a significant investment in Obopay, Operator, Globacom. The project which is expected to revolutionize the provision of telecoms services a mobile service provider that basically turns a cell on the sub-continent and make services truly phone into an interactive banking card. affordable to individuals and corporate organizations, is connecting Africa with Europe and the United States. 500 Million To Use Mobile Money Services By 2014. 16 000 locations. Western Union announced that it According to new analysis from Juniper Research, had added 1 000 Agent locations to reach the network consumer demand for mobile money transfer services milestone of 15 000 locations across 49 countries and will see users exceed 500 million globally by 2014, territories, in the third quarter these efforts were doubled, principally in developing countries. with an equal number being added in a single financial quarter.
  11. 11. CONTRIBUTION | Postal Networks and Mobile Money Use of Post office networks improves financial inclusion also through supporting mobile money transfers Piet Biemans - CEO POFIB Development BV “The services at the counters of the post offices have an operational character and are often Piet Biemans based on co-operation with local financial CEO POFIB Development BV institutions, like retail banks (e.g. post and postal savings banks) and giro and savings institutions.” POFIB DEVELOPMENT to improve people’s access to financial services T hrough the countrywide coverage the post Africa, namely the availability of secure, office networks qualify for improving the experienced and cost efficient agent networks to be financial inclusion for all people, including the regulated by the Central Bank. rural and un- and under- banked. In the field of low value, high volume cash About 60-80% of the people in the African continent payments in most (emerging) countries the post are un- and under-banked but about 40% offices are handling already an important portion of possesses a mobile phone at the moment. This is operational payments, like cash in and cash out expected to grow to about 60% in 2012 . Mobile services for utility payments, pensions, etc. This money transfer (MMT) services can be the main often takes place under the approval and control of driver in increasing financial inclusion of the un- and the Central Bank through a limited under banked. payment/settlement license. Through the postal networks in the African The country wide post offices network can be countries a co-operation modus should and could contracted by mobile operators as a cash agent be developed to be able to cover one of the most network, in principle via a contract with one party. In critical aspects of success for modern efficient a number of African countries this is already taken payments through mobile money transfers in place. This makes available a distribution network www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 16
  12. 12. all over the country, including procedures and The Universal Postal Union (UPU, an United means to handle in an efficient and prudent way the Nations institute) is a multilateral institution to cash 'streams'. improve the quality and international co-operating Prudent and cost efficient cash management is one of postal companies. A sub-institution for the of the main issues to solve in the field of payments African continent of the UPU is the PAPU (Pan and financial services in emerging markets. This is African Postal Union).One of the objectives of the needed because most 'modern' transfers like via PAPU is focused on advancing the poor through mobile phones, often result in immediate postal services especially via financial inclusion. withdrawal of cash via an agent network, at least in Because of cross-boarder co-operation the African the starting period of the new service. In Kenya with postal networks are an explicit candidate for mobile the Mpesa Mobile Payment solution the cash-in operators and banks to act as agent for mobile and cash-out service represented about 53% of the banking and mobile money transfer services, local transactions during the first period (2007/2008) and and international. still is an important component of the Of course the local suitability MMT service.. and benefits of involving post “ office networks should be In 2006 an extensive analyzed for the individual report 'The Role of postal organisation per Of course the local suitability and country. Per country the postal Postal Networks in Expanding Access to benefits of involving post office companies have a different Financial Services' position and background in the networks should be analyzed field of (mass) retail financial of the World bank clarified the status of for the individual postal organisation services. postal financial per country The development of an overall s e r v i c e s o ff e r e d applicable analysis-, through the postal development- and ” office networks in implementation approach for emerging countries post office companies to be in all continents. able to align with partners in a The study reviewed Mobile Money ecosystem can information on postal financial services in 24 of the be supported via the postal 47 countries in the African continent. These multilateral African organisation PAPU. countries are all actively involved in the provision of postal financial services albeit with a broad Especially the expected booming development in diversity in institutional structures, market the coming years of mobile money transfers and performance, products and development. In these mobile banking can explicitly be supported through African countries, with a population of 682 million a co-operation model for (postal) agent networks, people and 14,750 Post Offices, the number of mobile operators and retail (post/ postal savings) postal financial transactions were 6,9 million with a banks. value of $ 1.6 billion per annum. These services are mostly composed of postal giro and savings accounts transactions, payments for utilities, ” pensions, remittances (local and international) and Piet Biemans savings. CEO POFIB Development BV The services at the counters of the post offices have an operational character and are often based www.pofib.com on co-operation with local financial institutions, like piet.biemans@pofib.nl retail banks (e.g. post and postal savings banks) and giro and savings institutions. Through these post office service networks the process quality has been defined and maintained under the responsibility of international postal institutions (like Universal Postal Union, UPU) and local governments (Ministry of Communication) and of local financial institutions, and often under the control of the Central bank. www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 17
  13. 13. MobiCash was born out of the need to develop a convenient, secure and affordable payment platform that will address the use of our technology to enable people who are not served by financial institutions to start using financial services without having to access them through traditional bank branches. Give us a brief description of your business – what and Customer-to Merchant transactions, opening up do you do? business opportunities for a multitude of small businesses and operators. The merchant can sell MobiCash was born out of the need to develop a goods and services as well as take deposits and convenient, secure and affordable payment platform provide cash back services. that will address the use of our technology to enable people who are not served by financial institutions to What makes your business concept unique and start using financial services without having to access universal? them through traditional bank branches. By combining The patented technology developed by our partner our vast knowledge in various IT domains and the TagAttitude is the cornerstone of our product experience of our management team in learning and development and marketing strategy using any cell excelling at new technologies, we were able to devise phone, over any network! Overview of the a realistic business model and plan that utilise the technology include: NSDT™ (Near Sound Data convergence of banking and telecommunications Transfer) and Voice Biometrics that works immediately technologies. With MobiCash, every phone becomes on every phone. Transactions are securely signed with like a bank account that is identified by its phone NSDT™ a technology that sends “cryptosounds” number. Users can easily load, transfer, spend, give or through the phone's audio channel to enable contact- retrieve cash from their phone. less mobile payment. To add another layer of security Give an example of how the transaction of your our Voice Biometric solution is accomplished by business model works? comparing the voiceprint that was created at enrolment to a sample given when the user wants to MobiCash leverages the ubiquity and power of the sign a transaction. Authentication is very fast; it can be standard mobile phone as a payment platform, completed in 0.5 seconds. delivering more customer convenience. MobiCash is able to offer anyone with a cell phone a The majority of existing mobile payment solutions rely on convenient, simple and easy to use mobile technologies such as SMS, USSD, NFC, or STK that payment and banking at low transaction fees suffer from weak security, mobile network operator regardless of the device and the mobile network dependence, requirements for specific handset operator he is on. MobiCash turns any cell phone technology, or inappropriate design for retail into a Merchant Point of Sale (PoS), giving the transactions. SMS and USSD payment processes are merchant the ability to do both Merchant-to-Customer time consuming and ill suited to the retail context and illiterate clients! These weaknesses have hindered the www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 20
  14. 14. effective deployment of many mobile payment services. This retail context problem is compounded by the fact that SMS and USSD technologies can not be used on a POS and do not offer the possibility of printing a receipt. The universality of our solution comes from the fact that the functions offered by NSDT™ are identical to NFC and is available on every phone model without any modifications. NFC (near Field Communications) is an emerging standard and there are plans to deploy it in western countries over the coming years. This deployment is expensive as it requires a change in existing phones and the installment of specific Point of Sale (POS) terminals. When NFC is used with mobile phones it is under the control of the MNO s, which detracts from the universality of this technology. Clearly define and describe your target market? To fill a niche of providing the first real opportunity for many unbanked people to get on to a formal “banking ladder” with benefits including basic bank accounts, savings and micro-credits This is very promising for emerging countries as it brings them bank services leveraging the existing cell phone infrastructure already in place. MobiCash has a simple solution to bank the unbanked and offer them secure mobile transaction capabilities. The latest full set of mobile subscriber figures for all of South Africa's mobile operators relates to the end of March 2009. In the three months ending March 31 2009, the total mobile customer base increased by 3.8% to surpass 51.9mn. The market can be split into four distinct sectors: - Urban Elite 3.5 million 8% Banked / Insured Urban Middle Class 9.2 million 21% Banked/ Underinsured Emerging Consumers 17.2 million 39% Unbanked / Uninsured Rural Survivalists 11.4 million 26% Unbanked / Uninsured The 'Emerging Consumers' and Rural Survivalists are MobiCash' target market. They are: - ? 82% black; ? Live in rural or peri-urban areas; ? 60% of households own a cellular telephone (GHS 2005) ? Cellphones in use: 39.66 million (2006). A little over 70% of cell phone users do not have a land line at home (AMPS2005RA and AMPS2003A) The country's three cellular network operators - Vodacom, MTN and Cell C - provide telephony to over 50-million subscribers or nearly 100% of the population. 85% of these are pre-paid. Explain the 'Network Effect' of your business model Network effects become significant after a certain subscription percentage has been achieved, called critical mass. At the critical mass point, the value obtained from the good or service is greater than or equal to the price paid for the good or service. As the value of the good is determined by the user base, this implies that after a certain number of people have subscribed to the service or purchased the good, additional people will subscribe to the service or purchase the good due to the positive 'utility:price' ratio. A key business concern must then be how to attract users prior to reaching critical mass. MobiCash offers three ways to move funds between MobiCash accounts: proximity transfers, remote transfers, and web-based transfers. MobiCash can be set up so that receiving a P2P payment can serve to enroll new users automatically. This feature of the MobiCash mobile payment system makes it highly viral. Scalable and Viral solution: What is your expansion / growth strategy? MobiCash is creating a fully meshed African Payment Network with points of presence (POP's) in all major African cities. A fully operational Pan African Payment Network will allow African nations to link directly with each other, rather than having to switch through one of the major US or European hubs. MobiCash has already established a firm foothold in Africa and has or is finalizing licenses, joint venture agreements with in country partners in Africa and the rest of the world. www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 21
  15. 15. accessible from one end of the country to the Q:Could you provide a brief overview of the other - a laptop bank. Since FrontlineSMS:Credit organization and your role and responsibilities in is being designed to run over existing mobile it? payment networks, however, it will only work where those networks already exist. A:FrontlineSMS:Credit was founded to help organizations more readily utilize and integrate Q:How does the process work, and what are mobile payments in to their core management the main benefits for MFIs and loan recipients? systems. From making it easier to send mobile payments en masse for payroll purposes to automating the micro-loan repayment process A: Today, any user within an existing mobile over the mobile network, we aim to provide a free payment network can send loans and payments & open source solution anyone can use to issue via their handset. We hear numerous cases, mobile financial services with the same robust though, of groups spending the entire day to pay data management as a large institution. large workforces over the mobile payment network. By meshing the group messaging As Executive Director, my primary responsibility is functionality of FrontlineSMS with whichever to ensure that tasks are properly delegated mobile payment system an organization uses, throughout the FrontlineSMS:Credit team. By that organization will be able to distribute encouraging our staff to innovate and bring their payments en masse in a matter of minutes. Also, own systems and solutions to fruition, I also aim every payment will be automatically attached to a to make the FrontlineSMS:Credit community both worker or client profile based on their phone positive and proactive. number, which FrontlineSMS already makes possible (e.g. if you click a user # in Q:What inspired the Laptop Bank slogan? FrontlineSMS, you can see every message sent to and received from that user). A:When finished, FrontlineSMS:Credit will allow Bill Gates writes that "The first rule of any any mobile payment system to communicate with technology used in a business is that automation any microfinance management information applied to an efficient operation will magnify the system (MIS) and visa versa. Accordingly, operation." By expediting the payment process implementing MFIs will be able to distribute a full and automating data management, range of financial services via simple text FrontlineSMS:Credit will allow implementing message, making the banking services they institutions to commit their time to more valuable provide from their central computer equally www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 23
  16. 16. tasks, like seeking greater loan portfolios or reinvesting costs saved from automation. Q: You have an impressive board membership. What did you looked out for in them and how where you able to bring on board such Q: FrontlineSMS is very popular and credible in experienced hands? Africa. what inspired the coming together of FrontlineSMS and CreditSMS to emerge as Our selection process was designed to find frontlineSMS:Credit? passionate, knowledgeable and respected individuals across a range of industries. A: FrontlineSMS is popular precisely because it Currently, our board is comprised of experts in microfinance, insurance, international politics, offers an intuitive, low-tech solution to a range of complex problems. I initially chose FrontlineSMS mobile payments, information communication as the base platform for CreditSMS for the same technology, mobile innovation, and healthcare. reason. We decided to officially join Together, they help FrontlineSMS:Credit FrontlineSMS as FrontlineSMS:Credit to signal to anticipate and pro-actively respond to industry potential users that we embrace the same developments and guide our direction. principles of openness and practicality. More fundamentally, I think we were able to attract such well-known figures because our Q:What type of impact has FrontlineSMS:Credit mission is to help bring financial inclusion to had thus far, and what does the future hold for the every corner of the world. The thought itself is organization? energizing and, happily, resonates with virtually everyone I meet. A: We still have several months of coding left before the beta version of our software will be Q: What should Africans watch out in coming available. Once available, we anticipate it will months and years? allow MFIs to more readily leverage mobile payment systems to lower operational costs, A: The mobile money space in Africa is increase geographic impact and lower interest progressing at an exponential pace. Since an rates commensurate with the amount saved entirely new technology could be sweeping the during loan distribution and collection. In the continent in five years, it's difficult to tell where future, we aim to facilitate increasingly complex FrontlineSMS:Credit will be. Nevertheless, we financial services via local mobile payment plan to follow developments in the space closely networks. and continuously provide free & open source In terms of upfront capital spending for MFI's in solutions to leverage available technologies for Africa,what will the cost structure be for MFI's financial inclusion. using FrontlineSMS:Credit. FrontlineSMS:Credit is being developed as a free Q: Agent Networks or representatives in Africa & open source solution, so no one will ever have already? to pay for the software. In order to use it, Our chief programmers live in Nairobi and we however, implementers will need to plug in to a have several beta partners lined up across the mobile payment network and put m-money into continent. Otherwise, our team comes from all their m-wallet. over: Canada, United Kingdom, Argentina & the That cost, however, is relatively insignificant given United States. We hope to expand our presence the fact that automating a range of transactions in Africa as quickly as possible, however, and are and executing them over the mobile payment always happy to discuss potential ways to partner network will significantly cut operational costs. In and collaborate. other words, by investing in the ability to leverage mobile payments, implementing institutions will be able to both save money and increase revenue. Everything boils down to opportunity costs: If you pay X workers X dollars/shillings/francs to travel X kilometers "Ben Lyon is the Founder and every day, you can't use that money for other Executive Director of purposes. Conversely, if one worker in front of a FrontlineSMS:Credit. He graduated from Rhodes computer pays X workers simultaneously and College, where he majored in instantly over the mobile network, you save the Economics and International costs of time, transportation and staff salary, Studies with a focus on microfinance and informal which you can reinvest in revenue-generating economics. Ben lives in Washington, DC." activities. www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 24
  17. 17. Hannes van Rensburg CEO FOUNDER What is the genesis of millions that are left The financial institutions are slow on the mobile behind, all across Africa from formal financial segment, is this deliberate strategy or they are inclusion? still coming to terms with the mobile channel? In a world where money influences almost To the contrary, many banks have moved fast. In everything that we do, the majority of people living some instances banks are leading the way in using in Africa do not have access to basic financial mobile technology to bank the un- (or under-) services. This means that they are locked into the banked. As an example, Standard Bank in South constraints of a cash economy. It is extremely Africa use Fundamo technology through a difficult for these people to budget and plan their dedicated division (called Community Banking) to finances effectively, to save in a secure way, to open bank accounts for people through retail send mony cost-effectively and instantly etc. If we outlets and this seems to be very popular. In other do not solve this, the majority of people living in countries (like Nigeria and Zambia) we are also Africa will remain disenfranchised. An efficient, seeing a lot of activity and actions from banks. (both electronic money system is essential in order to small and large). defeat poverty on the continent. MTN and Fundamo relationship. How Can mobile technology help? MTN contracted Fundamo as a strategic supplier Mobile telephony provides the ideal infrastructure for the group to deploy MobileMoney (their financial to deliver an electronic money system to millions services brand) in all of the 21 countries where because of the following reasons. It is almost MTN operate in an aggressive roll-out plan. This ubiquitous (at least for areas where we have roll-out is on track and is probably one of the more economic activity), the capital has already been ambitious roll-out projects on a Group basis in the spent to deploy the infrastructure, it is intuitive to world. The solution has been deployed in the use and it can deliver extremely secure solutions. majority of countries and is in active production in a number of these. As far as I am aware, few Specifically, How can Fundamo's technology companies (if any) have the capacity and help? experience to tackle such an ambitious project and Fundamo brings more than ten years of experience we are thankful that MTN chose us for this project. with multiple deployments in Africa (as well as Roll out status in Africa. many others globally) to help resolve issues and overcome challenges. Our expertise and Fundamo technology has now been deployed, or is technology have been tested in complex in the process of being deployed in 25 African production situations and our technology is countries. The technology is operated under recognized as the leading platform with which to various brands and with different business models. deploy these kinds of systems. We also have an Sometimes our clients are mobile operators and approach of collaboration where we work with local sometimes banks, but all of them can be assured of companies as well as large multi-national best of breed technology, high caliber of support technology companies (like Accenture and Sun) to and ongoing innovation. ensure that we have more comprehensive solutions. Do you see active participation of mobile operators in banking the unbanked in Africa? Many mobile operators have successfully deployed solutions and established business units to bring banking services to the unbanked. Many more have plans. www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 26
  18. 18. Factor Shaka Mobile is a niche market wireless telecom Eco-system targeting Diaspora Africans with Mobile Money and Voice services to their home country. Shaka Mobile will Our eco-system and technology comprise of the launch services in the US in the first quarter of 2010. following: Mobile Money Services 1. Voice – nationwide GSM coverage in the US. 2. Mobile Money Transfer – robust mobile money 1. Mobile Money Transfer – P2P (person to platform that consists of a mobile wallet, bill pay option person), C2B (consumer to business) from the handset and airtime topup function. to home country 3. Pre-paid Visa Card Program – twin pre-paid visa 2. Bill Pay – ability to pay for bills back home card that will be tied to the mobile wallet. A Diaspora 3. Airtime topup – ability to pay for airtime topup for African can send one card home. They can move friends and relatives back home on any network in real money in real time to their visa cards from the mobile time. wallet. 4. Twin pre-paid visa card – we will have two visa 4. Banking – we are able to integrate to banks cards linked to a mobile wallet. The diaspora client can which will allow customers to link their accounts to their move money in real time between the cards. This mobile wallet for topup. program is regulatory compliant. Future Plans Voice Services Shaka Mobile plans to expand to the UK and other 1. Fave 1 – unlimited US, unlimited in-network and lucrative expatriate markets with high numbers of unlimited calling to one number on any network to home Africans. We are looking to grow our eco-system with country $45 per month partners in the telecom, banking and distribution space. 2. Fave 2 – unlimited US, unlimited in-network and We encourage interested partners to contact us for unlimited calling to two numbers on any network to potential synergy. We will continue to scale our services home country $50 per month with relevant value added services that meet the needs 3. Fave 3 – unlimited US, unlimited in-network an of Diaspora Africans. unlimited calling to three numbers on any network to home country $55 per month 4. Fave 4 – unlimited US, unlimited in-network and unlimited calling to four numbers on any network to Dhidha J. Timona home country $60 per month dtimona@Shakamobile.com www.shakamobile.com 5. Fave 5 – unlimited US, unlimited in-network and unlimited calling to five numbers on any network to home country $65 per month www.mobilemoneyafrica.com
  19. 19. Lessons from Phillipines by John Owens Please share with Africans your experiences in the their phone, open a bank account, and do just about Philippines Micro Finance sector? everything that you can do on the internet or I have been working in the microfinance sector in through an ATM or POS through their mobile the Philippines for the past ten years, before that I phone. Given that a mobile phone can be a debit spent two years in Bolivia and also worked for nine card as well as a functioning POS, entrepreneurs of years in Jamaica in the field of microfinance. Over all sizes can now buy and sell products, pay the past ten years, I have worked closely with the salaries to workers, and make bank transactions rural banking sector in the Philippines which is now remotely through their mobile phone. one of the largest providers of microfinance Globe Telecom's Gcash has helped integrate services in the country managing more than 1.5 Millions into formal Financial Inclusion.How is it million borrowers (over 800,000 of these borrowers benefiting the Micro Finance enterprises? are classified as microenterprise borrowers with Globe Telecom's e-money issuer, G-Xchange has the rest being small farmers, low income salary created a wonderful mobile money platform that, loan clients, and small businesses) and more than when linked to a small bank, credit cooperative, or 6 million deposit accounts (over 5.3 million are microfinance institution can provide powerful micro deposit accounts with balances of less than access to financial services including deposits, $300). To read more about the history of rural loans, payments, money transfer services, etc. To banks in microfinance, please see the attached learn more about how rural banks are using mobile article I wrote for the ADB a couple of years ago. money and the GCASH platform in particular to expand access to banking services, feel free to Over the past ten years, my team has also c h e c k o u t o u r w e b s i t e a t coordinated closely with the Microfinance Council www.mobilephonebanking.org or the videos at of the Philippines and the Philippine Central Bank www.youtube.com/rbapmabs as the field of microfinance has moved to one of becoming much more commercial and integrated Drawing from your experiences, do you think within the financial sector as a whole. Microfinance Mobile technology can benefit Micro Finance in the Philippines is now much broader than it was Enterprises in Africa where Millions own Mobile 10 years ago encompassing new financial products Phones but yet without a Bnak account? and services that include new approaches to Mobile Money offers tremendous opportunities for reaching out to small farmers, housing small entrepreneurs to send and receive money microfinance, microinsurance, and more recently, and we can see this happening in Kenya with M- micro remittances, domestic transfers, mobile Pesa and beginning to happen with others around money, mobile phone banking and mobile the region. While mobile money is like a pre-paid commerce services. debit account that can be used to send and receive What are the major Challenges and are the money; in order to expand greater access to conditions similar to what we have in Africa? financial services such as regulated bank accounts, access to credit, payments including The major challenges are still to reach out to utility and bill payments, as well as buying and millions of potential clients with limited access to selling goods and services, it is important to link banking services and to do so in a more cost mobile money accounts to products and services effective manner than we have been able to do so in offered by small financial institutions including rural the past. This is where mobile money and mobile or community banks, credit cooperatives, and phone banking can come into play. microfinance NGOs. I think the important thing to What can entrepreneurs learn from MABS stress is that to expand access to full financial experiences in the Philippines? services, there is the need for collaboration Entrepreneurs are learning that rural banks can between mobile money issuers and banks and provide a broader range of financial services. In other financial players, especially those that have terms of mobile money and greater access to successfully provided access to financial services banking services, clients are now able to register for microentreprenuers and low income households. While mobile money issuers have www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 29
  20. 20. tremendous potential to provide outreach to anyone with a phone, they cannot provide greater access to credit or offer full deposit services (other than a simple limited mobile money transactional account). For this to happen, we need to see collaboration between the all the players. Fortunately, this is beginning to happen in several countries. On a Final Note, how can technology Benefit African Micro Finance Enterprises in Africa? As I mentioned above, the important thing is for financial players, whether they be commercial, rural, or community banks, credit cooperatives, or November 10,2009 MFI NGOs to understand the tremendous potential Canada of mobile money and begin to collaborate closely www.mobilemoneycanada.com with proper regulated Mobile Money issuers to explore how mobile money can be used to expand greater access and reach out to more clients than has ever been possible before. I am not sure where players like Equity Bank are with their mobile phone banking initiative but I would encourage them to look at ways to collaborate and make use of mobile money platforms like Safaricom (M-Pesa) and other mobile money players to create greater Wednesday, 24th February 2010 - access to financial services. The combination of Friday, 26th February 2010 institutions like Equity Bank and Safaricom (M- Lagos, Nigeria Pesa) would provide true access to banking www.Bspmediagroup.com services to millions more people than either institution could do on its own. This kind of collaboration with networks of MFIs and Mobile Money Issuers could really expand access to financial services in Africa and I expect it will happen. See some of the articles I prepared earlier this year with MicroSave to learn a bit more about these opportunities. Banking & Mobile Payments East Africa, 2010 www.aitecafrica.com 24-25 February 2010 the Kenyatta International Conference Centre (KICC) Nairobi, Kenya JOHN V. OWENS Chief of Party Microenterprise Access to Banking Services G/F RBAP Bldg. A. Soriano Ave. Cor. Arzobispo St. Date: June 2010 Intramuros, Manila, Philippines Location: TBC www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 30
  21. 21. banked. Organizations, local governments and (micro)finance institutions can make use of the platform to connect with low-income and isolated clients through POS devices and mobile phones. What does the STRO organization do? What are its objectives? The Social TRade Organizations STRO is a group of foundations that are involved with Micro Credit and trade networks based on internal currencies. The first STRO was founded in 1970 in the Netherlands and has been mostly active in Europe and Latin America. STRO usually works with local partner organizations on financial solutions that stimulate local development and create new possibilities for small and medium sized enterprises. The hart of the Social Trade approach is that money entering poor region should circulate some times before leaving the area for imports from rich areas, in order to organize the local Share with Africans your Background and economy, create employment and business about Cyclos opportunities. From this point of view it is I am working for the organization STRO (Social important to prevent purchasing power leaving TRade Organization) and responsible for the the poor regions because of interest payments or open source on-line banking software Cyclos. services/solutions that could have been delivered Cyclos is being developed by two teams of in the community itself. The development and programmers, one in Brazil and one in Uruguay. high availability of new technologies offered an The objective of the project is to develop open opportunity to achieve these goals. source banking software that is easy to use and STRO picks up the challenge described by Bank maintain, flexible, secure, and highly of England's governor Mervyn King: customizable. The project was started in 2003 “Is it possible that advances in technology will and is currently used by more than hundred mean that (...) the world may come to resemble a organizations. The software is available in eight pure exchange economy? Electronic transactions languages and more translations are being in real time hold out that possibility. There is no worked on. reason, in principle, why final settlements could The base of Cyclos is a banking system but it has not be carried out by the private sector without several additional modules like e-commerce, loan the need for clearing through the central bank. administration and various community modules (...) There is no conceptual obstacle to the idea like internal messaging, referrals and a that two individuals engaged in a transaction notification system. The platform offers currently could settle by a transfer of wealth from one a large range of financial operations such as electronic account to another in real time. (...) The (micro) payments, installments, checking same system could match demands and supplies balances, monitoring transactions, micro finance of financial assets, determine prices and make handling, remittance handling and payment of settlements. Financial assets and real goods and both salaries and bills. The system is designed to services would be priced in terms of a unit of handle businesses-to-business as well as account. Final settlement could be made without consumer-to-businesses and person-to-person any recourse to the central bank.(...) Without operations. such a role in settlements, central banks, in their All services are available via Web access and present form, would no longer exist(...). mobile phone (WAP1/2). Over the last years it became clear that "low level" access channels In what ways does STRO carry out where needed. During the last two years we have these objectives? been working on mobile (delivery) access channels such as SMS and POS (Point of Sale), Social trade promotes the opportunity for enabling an integrated mobile banking solution. communities to optimize the circulation of purchasing power in their community or region. The mobile access channels will be ideally suited Using the Social Trade methods the potential of to provide financial services in remote areas the community can be optimized based on the (rural banking) as well as serving the un(der)- community's culture with respect for the www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 31
  22. 22. environment. Through research STRO has module. Users can publish offers and wants for developed and tested pilot projects in various products and services and search within market countries. This resulted in a range of instruments place page. The e-commerce module is also and practical approaches that are available to integrated with the access channels. For example support private or public initiatives that want to a member can register an "interest" for a specific stimulate local economies. product or service and define criteria like location One of the economic models that proved to be and price. When another member of the network successful is the C3 (commerce and commerce publishes a service or product that matches the circuit) model. A C3 is a trade network build on a criteria of the interest, the person that registered democratic structure where the members the interest will receive an instant notification. (consumers and businesses) have access to low Members themselves can define if they want to cost loans and a range of commerce and receive the notification as internal message, e- communication tools. mail or SMS. In case of SMS notifications the costs can be charged automatically to the Tell us more about the software of receiver account. Other types of notifications are Cyclos and how it can benefit Africans also available. For example financial notifications One of the main objectives was to provide a such as reminders on expired loan repayment platform that allows a company or organization to dates or the approval of new loans. operate the system with minimal manual work. There are various ways Africans could benefit This is achieved by automatic tasks, a clear from the Cyclos platform. Local governments can group based structure and close integration of all reinforce the community's economy offering new modules. A payment system build on Cyclos does forms of credit and payment services. Micro not have to depend on the services of a single finance institutions (MFI's) could enlarge their telecommunication provider and in case of outreach. Local businesses that receive (digital) currency backed systems it is possible to have payments from clients with micro credits can use partnerships with more than one bank. No the digital currency to trade with other companies specific hardware is needed and all in the network. This way the available funds can communication is handled by standard protocols generate more local economic activity than within what will facilitate the implementation and roll out conventional micro finance programs. STRO of the system. developed various innovative models to increase The Cyclos system is build on a modular the leverage of financial funds that are available structure what offers flexibility. An organization for credit. can just enable the components based on But in principal any organization or institute that services it wants to provide. Cyclos comes with offers payment services can make use of the default configurations for most common monetary platform (for example campus payment systems, models but it is possible to setup a new system consumer liability program, credit unions). from scratch. It is always possible to add new services at a later stage without having to change Why did you choose to publish the the existing structure. For example, an on-line software open source? banking system can be extended with SMS and The STRO organization tries to bring the credit/debit card payment services. emission of money and credit back to the communities. This is much in line with the Open Source philosophy and therefore open source Cyclos has various access channels that connect was a logical choice. Today few independent to the same a real-time (on-line) transaction mobile banking providers exist. We think an open system. This means, for example, that loans and source approach will contribute to better access micro credits that are granted via the Web and greater diversity of financial services. Also, interface will be directly available to clients via all open source software in general offers better channels (if enabled). The access channels are integration with third party products. all integrated part of the platform and allow internal routing. For example, a business or loan agent can send a payment request via web To be continued. access and this request can be routed automatically to the SMS channel. Meanwhile the client would need to confirm the request with an SMS reply and PIN, the business can follow-up the status of the payment requests on-line at the web page. A powerful feature in Cyclos is the e-commerce www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 32
  23. 23. Announcement WASHINGTON DC & DENVER, October 30, 2009— Sixty finalists for the African Diaspora Marketplace (ADM), with proposals representing more than $22 million of Diaspora business investment to spur job creation in their native African Diaspora Marketplace countries, were announced today by Western Announces 60 Finalists; Entrepreneurial Union and the United States Agency for Proposals Collectively Represent More International Development (USAID). Than $22 Million In Diaspora Investment in African Communities The ADM is a business entrepreneur program that has catalyzed economic development plans from U.S.-based African Diaspora to help 19 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, through collaboration between Western Union and USAID. ”The finalists of the ADM competition represent the best of a new class of entrepreneur – those who are investing back in their home countries to create economic opportunity and reduce poverty and unemployment in Sub-Saharan Africa,” said Alonzo Fulgham, Acting USAID Administrator. “USAID is proud to be a part of this innovative program that leverages the resources of Western Union and its Agents, Diaspora communities, and local partners in Africa to support these entrepreneurs.” ”The business leaders selected here understand the challenges facing their native countries, and they have identified solutions that work,” said Anne McCarthy, Executive Vice President of Corporate Affairs, Western Union. “Our finalists have market- appropriate proposals that could sustain job growth and spark new business start-ups benefiting Sub- Saharan Africa.” The finalists were chosen from a pool of 733 applicants by an independent panel of volunteer judges from business, non-governmental organizations, Diaspora development organizations and academia. They represent 14 countries and a range of business plans – from agri- business such as food oil processing and fish farming to healthcare and IT service providers. From this group of finalists, between 10-20 winners will be announced in mid-January 2010 at an event to be held at the Academy for Educational Development (AED). The ADM program will award matching grants for program winners of between $50,000-$100,000. The ADM is funded jointly by USAID, The Western Union Company, and the Western Union www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 35
  24. 24. Foundation, as well as through Western Union Through Western Union's Our World, Our Family® Agent Giving Circles featuring Ecobank signature program, the Western Union Foundation Transnational Incorporated (ETI) in Africa and Irv supports initiatives to empower individuals, families Barr Management in the United States. Any and communities through access to better organization interested in an opportunity with the education and economic opportunity. Recognized ADM should direct messages to by the Committee Encouraging Corporate adm2009@usaid.gov. Philanthropy in 2009, the program is a five year, $50 million commitment reflecting the efforts made by Western Union employees, Agents, and For a list of the ADM finalists as well as information partners around the world. Since its inception, the on starting a business, visit Western Union Foundation has awarded almost www.diasporamarketplace.org. $55 million in grants and disaster relief to over 1,870 nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in 100 countries. For more information, visit http://foundation.westernunion.com. About USAID USAID is the lead government agency providing About Ecobank (www.ecobank.com) development and humanitarian assistance to I n c o r p o r a t e d i n L o m e , To g o , E c o b a n k people around the world. The agency's Global Transnational Incorporated (ETI) is the parent Development Alliance (GDA) links U.S. foreign company of the leading independent regional assistance with the resources, expertise and banking group in Africa. It currently operates in 28 creativity of the private sector as well as African countries, namely: Benin, Burkina-Faso, nongovernmental organizations. Since its launch in Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African 2001, the Global Development Alliance has Republic, Chad, Congo-Brazzaville, Côte d'Ivoire, changed the way U.S. international development Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Gambia, projects are financed and implemented. By Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, cultivating more than 900 public-private alliances Malawi, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome with over 1,700 individual partners, it has allowed and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo, USAID to leverage an additional $9.6 billion in Uganda and Zambia. The group is also resources for development. For more information represented in France through its affiliate EBI S.A. about USAID and its programs around the world in Paris. ETI also has a presence in Tanzania and visit www.usaid.gov. For more information on in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, where it holds Global Development Alliances visit licenses but is not yet operational. www.usaid.gov/gda/index.html. ETI is listed on the stock exchanges in Lagos, Accra and the West African Economic and Monetary About the Western Union Company Union (UEMOA) – the BRVM. The Group is owned by more than 180,000 local and international The Western Union Company (NYSE: WU) is a institutional and individual shareholders. It has over leader in global payment services. Together with its 11,000 employees from 29 different countries in Vigo, Orlandi Valuta and Pago Facil branded over 700 branches. Ecobank is a full-service bank payment services, Western Union provides providing wholesale, retail, investment and consumers with fast, reliable and convenient ways transaction banking services and products to to send and receive money around the world, as governments, financial institutions, multinationals, well as send payments and purchase money international organizations, medium, small and orders. Western Union, Vigo and Orlandi Valuta micro businesses and individuals operate through a combined network of more than 400,000 Agent locations in 200 countries and territories. In 2008, The Western Union Company completed 188 million consumer-to-consumer transactions worldwide, moving $74 billion of principal between consumers, and 412 million consumer-to-business transactions. For more information, visit www.westernunion.com. For More Information Contact: Lisa McConnell, Western Union, +27 11 549 3310, lisa.mcconnell@intl.westernunion.com Gina Jackson, USAID, 202-712-1917, gjackson@usaid.gov About the Western Union Foundation Abou Kone, Ecobank, +228 221 03 03, abokone@ecobank.com www.mobilemoneyafrica.com NOVEMBER 2009 | 36
  25. 25. THANK YOU FOR MAKING US Number One IN AFRICA www.mobilemoneyafrica.com