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Submitted by TKama on
Clearly M"Pesa was a trigger, allowing carriers and their locally trusted brands, management structure to execute perfectly. Things have worked greatly in Kenya where has created a lot of "intangibles" (beyond the first mover's advantage) that are very hard to replicate : At this stage, when extending to the rest of emerging markets, I think the service should evolve to be more ubiquitous, becoming a truly suited mobile payment mean for emerging markets. Few points (to cite few) that Mobile Money should address: 1) Delegated Payments : The main specificity in payment for emerging markets is the notion of "delegation". Given the unbalanced welfare distribution, a very 10% own probably 90%+ of available funds...thus 90% of the time, the buyer at store, is paying on behalf of a third party (fund's originator"). Payment becoSafaricomme a less a dual relation :buyer - merchant and more involving originator -> buyer -> merchant. The current payment networks haven't been designed for such relation. They ignore the funds originator ...who in this case has a lot of to say. Originator can be the family main worker, or remote parent (migrant) or grant agency (social welfare), etc ...and probably has various instructions and claims on spend conditions. A true payment system for emerging markets, i believe should strongly highlight this core specificity 2) Replacing cash : Cash seems invincible and to me is part of the main target for mobile money. A large portion of the cash payment transactions can be replaced easily by mobile money ...typically adding unique value either for the funds originator or for the merchant. It just requires a very suited approach. 3) Empowering local businesses : Above all, empowering local businesses ...that are the foundation of most african economies. Today's mobile money is very consumer oriented and less merchant friendly. Micro-merchants, producers, craftsmen, schools, hospitals, grocery stores, etc ...should be a true target, allowing them to grow and create jobs. Getting informal businesses to access funding and grow, get better organized to address larger, international markets is to me key to get many countries out of their current situations. WIth these on top of existing service, i believe extending Mobile Money is create an even larger impact. I think also that a blend of sub-Saharan, latin american, northern africa, and south east asian piloting could be great approach. In each region, select a strong regional hub as part of the early pilots. Nigeria/Ghana seems to me key duo in English speaking west africa, Senegal/Mali in french speaking, I guess Philippines/Indonesia, Brazil/Peru.