Mobile money services that empower individuals to conduct financial transactions without a formal bank account are already yielding positive economic and social returns in frontier and emerging markets. And the revolution is just getting started.
Some 1.7 billion people and 200 million businesses worldwide still lack access to savings and credit services at formal institutions. As governments, entrepreneurs and private investors work to realize the World Bank’s goal of universal financial access by 2020, new opportunities are surfacing to service a rising class of newly-banked consumers.
Jeff Stewart is the CEO and Co-Founder of Lenddo EFL, which combines behavioral science with data gleaned from social media and mobile phone records to provide credit scoring and identity verification products in emerging markets. On mobile phone proliferation and opportunity he explains, “Hundreds of millions, billions of people... now have access to new markets, new sources of information and really be a part of the global economy.”