The bi-annual Partnership event brings together the clients of the program with a wide range of industry experts and practitioners to explore current trends and issues in financial inclusion. It is an opportunity for all to learn from actual experience in the field, to share best practice, and to explore ideas for the future. The 2016 event will be held in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, on June 23-24, and will focus on topics such as interoperability, agrifinance, data-driven insights, and risk management in digital financial services. The event is by invitation only.
The 2014 Partnership event gathered key stakeholders in the regional industry together with Partnership clients in Johannesburg to explore recent developments in financial inclusion and possible routes ahead. The discussions at the two-day event focused on developments in alternative delivery channels and business models for growth, as well as regulation and innovation. Debates brought together a wide range of views from the industry.
“There is a fundamental paradigm shift in how people are using financial services in Africa, and that is now driving how traditional financial sector providers are responding. Mobile money has had an impact on card companies, on banks and insurance companies, and on microfinance,” said Greta Bull, then Program Manager of the Partnership.
On the vision for the future, Godwin Ehigiamusoe, CEO of Nigerian microfinance bank LAPO, said, “There will have to be collaboration. I see microfinance banks like mine linking up with big actors in the mobile money sector.”
Ignacio Mas, independent consultant on mobile financial services and keynote speaker, said “I think it’s not possible to overhype the potential of mobile money. What you can easily overhype is the progress we have made so far against the vision. We know what the future will look like, but it’s not clear how quickly we will get there, who will take us there, and how.”
To hear more of what the participants at the event had to say on the future of financial inclusion in Africa, please watch these interview videos from the event:
A wide range of views
What will the industry for financial inclusion in Africa look like in 2020?
What is the most important innovation in the field of financial inclusion?
What is the impact of current developments in the industry on your company?
Held in Nairobi in late May 2013, the inaugural peer-to-peer client meeting of the Partnership for Financial Inclusion brought together 25 representatives from eight client institutions to discuss opportunities in agri-finance, risk management and product development for alternative channels. The meeting was held as part of the partnership’s knowledge sharing agenda, founded on the belief that clients share common challenges and opportunities and that the program has an important role to play in helping to build a community of practice on financial inclusion in Sub-Saharan Africa and beyond. This report summarizes the discussions at the event.
“I can say the MicroCred team has learned a lot. It is not very often that we have a chance to meet so many interesting people. In the two days spent in Kenya, we have progressed very much in our understanding of alternative channel challenges and success factors.”
Denis Moniotte, Head of Alternative Delivery Channels, MicroCred.