Branchless Banking 2010: Who Is Served? At What Price? What Is Next?

Posted by kelechiea on Jul 12, 2011
Branchless Banking 2010: Who Is Served? At What Price? What Is Next? data sheet 1595 Views
Claudia McKay, Mark Pickens
Publication Date: 
Sep 2010
Publication Type: 
Report/White paper

Excitement around branchless banking is rapidly turning into action by the private sector. Of the 79 live mobile money deployments tracked by the GSM Association (GSMA), two-thirds have launched in 2009 and 2010. Nokia and Paypal are investing in mobile payment platforms available to any client regardless of his or her mobile network or bank, a development that could shake up markets. And early branchless banking leaders are launching out in new directions. Brazilian banks are increasingly eager to use agents equipped with point-of-sale (POS) devices to originate loans. In Kenya, Safaricom has teamed up with Equity Bank, the country’s largest bank, to offer M-Kesho, a service that uses M-PESA’s mobile payments platform to offer a full range of Equity’s bank products.

Will these sizeable investments pay off? Many in the private sector believe reaching large numbers of mass market clients is a precondition to large-scale profits, but at the same time, they are uncertain about how quickly branchless banking will gain traction with the unbanked, low-income clients who make up the mass market. In other words, the prospects of branchless banking are still unclear.