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Paul Maritz

Amazon Vs. Open Source

“We strongly believe that the world needs a mechanism to write cloud applications. We don’t want the cloud to be like the bad old days of the mainframe computer. There’s potentially some tension between  people who want the cloud to be closed and proprietary and folks like us who want it to be an option for developers to write cloud applications. History teaches us that every time there’s a major wave of technology and a major new category or platform, then new players emerge. The world went from the mainframe computer, in which IBM was the big winner, to the PC and productivity software, where Microsoft and Oracle were the big winners. Now, we’re going to the cloud as a new category and platform. We know that Amazon is a big winner there but it operates a closed platform and history teaches us that in every major shift, there’s at least one closed winner and at least one open winner. We know that the closed winner is going to be Amazon but we don’t know yet who the open winner is going to be.”

Check out what else Paul Maritz, Executive Chairman of Pivotal and Mifos Chairman of the Board has to say about the future of Open Source and cloud computing in the Forbes article:

Paul Maritz’s Vision For Pivotal And The Battle With Amazon Over Open Source Cloud Computing

-Jacob Kobzi, Business Development Intern

Mifos Introduces Financial Inclusion 2.0 in the e-MFP Spring 2016 Newsletter

Craig Chelius, Mifos Executive Director, had the opportunity recently to pen this piece for the European Microfinance Platform Spring Newsletter. It outlines what we think is the next path forward to help Financial Inclusion reach the 2 Billion that are still excluded from the formal financial system. Financial Inclusion 2.0 is the fast, low cost, mobile delivery of digital financial services. As an open source pioneer, we are establishing the global open standard to take the industry there. 

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Three Countries. Three Conferences. One Common Theme.

Now that the team has safely returned from travel to our three events – our presence at each one has confirmed that our next generation Mifos architecture is the right solution that is needed to guide the world towards Financial Inclusion 2.0. Each stakeholder is ready for this new era – partners building solutions, financial service providers needing greater efficiency to reach their clients, regulators seeking stability and control, and investors seeking transparency and impact.

At TechDays in Amsterdam, the need for the 3rd Generation of Mifos was confirmed by partners new and old. The growth of our partners like Musoni Services and Conflux Technologies showed that they’re reaching a critical point of scale where a new lightweight, cloud-native, and highly scalable architecture is needed. The direct presence of brand new partners confirmed that we are the innovation that powers innovators and that each day new partners are coming our way to build apps that are mobile-first and cloud-enabled.

At the 18th Microcredit Summit in Abu Dhabi, we confirmed the opportunity to set a standard for innovation and be the driving force behind Financial Inclusion 2.0.  The entire industry as a whole is aligning for this to be a reality – financial inclusion providers are ready to go digital and recognize its benefits, national regulators are fostering and advancing an enabling ecosystem, and the technology has evolved with unparalleled computing power available at low cost.

At the Global Microfinance Forum in Berlin, the focus was on investors but they all echoed the pain we’re addressing: costs are too high, access is too hard, innovation is too slow and change is needed. When they gave case studies on examples of successful innovation, they highlighted Musoni Services, one of our gold platform partners that is powered by Mifos X. Meeting these investors and apex organizations was great validation that we are the innovation that powers the innovators.

Craig and Markus will be providing more detailed recaps of our TechDays and the Global Microfinance Forum so I’ll give a more detailed recap on the Microcredit Summit in Abu Dhabi. Read more

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Mifos at the Microcredit Summit for the First Time

Mifos Initiative is honored to be a part of the 18th Microcredit Summit in Abu Dhabi. With its theme of Frontier Innovations for Financial Inclusion, it was the perfect time for us to attend and tell the world our story and journey of transformation since we emerged from the Grameen Foundation. We have been a technology pioneer for microfinance, then financial inclusion, and how will the lead way for Financial Inclusion 2.0.

This is personally my first time at a Microcredit Summit event and of course the venue, the Etihad Towers at Jumeirah is impressive but the buzz and energy of 1000 delegates from 60 different countries is indescribable. Read more

Accion Assesses Musoni App

Powered by Mifos, Musoni Receives High Praise

Musoni Systems worked closely with Accion’s Channels and Technology group on a comprehensive impact assessment of the Musoni App.  The app is designed to improve loan officer efficiency by digitalising the client registration, group registration and loan application processes. The app works in online and offline mode, and can also be used to view reports or to carry out PPI surveys. So far the app has been used to register over 40,000 clients and a similar number of loans.

While the app has always received positive feedback from end users, this was the first rigorous study into the impact the app has had on loan officer performance, branch cost savings and improved client experiences. We’re pleased to say that on all three of these, the app has proved itself an unqualified success.

Key findings of the case study were:

  1. Business Case: Digitalising operations resulted in the MFI realising an increase in income of $86,620 in the first year. As a result of this, launching the Musoni App resulted in a postive ROI in under 12 months
  2. Improved efficiency: Using the Musoni App increased the case load per loan officer by 68% while simultaneously reducing turnaround time (TAT) from 72 hours to 6 hours
  3. Cost Savings: The MFI realised cost savings of $27,246 in the first year of launching the app, achieved by promoting data entry staff into other roles and reduced stationary/printing costs
  4. Improved client experiences: Faster loan disbursements, no need to provide photos or ID photocopies and reduced potential for fraud all resulted in overwhelmingly positive feedback from clients
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Musoni Field Officer Registers Client

The Musoni App is provided as standard to any MFI licensing the Musoni System, alongside the mobile money integration, SMS module and system itself, providing a one-stop shop to any MFI looking to benefit from the latest technology.

On average, the five main branches recorded a 68 percent increase in loan officer caseload from January 2013 (pre-DFA) to December 2014 (one year after full rollout).”

Please click on this link, or the button below if you’d like to download the full Accion Case Study into the Musoni App. You can also learn more on the Accion CFI blog where they explain some of the benefits they’ve seen in other MFIs using tablets in the field.

To learn more about Musoni – visit their website.  See the impact these innovating people are making with their app built on top of the Mifos X platform.  As of this writing, Musoni serves more than 150,000 clients in 38 Financial Institutions in 9 Countries.  This count grows every day.  Impactful.

Congratulations on a job well done.

Mifos, SACCOs and Credit Unions

Mifos, SACCOs and Credit Unions

The Perfect Marriage

If ever two movements were meant to work together, it is the credit union movement and the Mifos initiative.  We have a shared mission to end poverty, we have shared principals, member control, independence and cooperative methodologies. Together we can accomplish a lot.

The Mifos Initiative was honored to host a webinar “Transforming Financial Inclusion: Mifos, SACCOs & Credit Unions” attended by 130 financial inclusion influencers, developers, volunteers and financial institutions – all focused on the same mission – bringing financial services to the 3 billion unbanked in the world.  Cooperative growth and the strong alignment between Mifos & Credit Unions was the main theme of the presentation.

From its very origin, the credit union community has been dedicated to helping one another grow since its German beginnings in the mid 1800s.  Picture1Because of people wanting to help people by pooling their money to make small loans, the credit union movement was born.  Through a spirit of cooperation, credit unions rapidly spread throughout Europe, India, North America, South America, Africa and the rest of the world.

The Mifos platform began with similar humble roots in microfinance providing a free and open source lending platform to reach the unbanked.  Because of people wanting to help people gain effective and afformifos-tag-transparentdable technology, the Mifos Initiative was born.  Today Mifos X has extended its reach to all types of financial service providers – Cooperatives, SACCOs, Credit Unions, Banks and even runs as the core system for sophisticated financial delivery systems.

Today the unserved are in emerging markets around the globe.  These markets are all about digital financial services.  We are witnessing considerable growth in in digital payments, in remittances, and in mobile money.  To be a modern financial institution – even in the most remote parts of the world – we need to have a modern connected core banking system.  Obviously this needs to be VERY inexpensive.  Mifos X being free and open source is that system.

Mifos technology is the future of financial services.  Everyone is moving into this brave new world of digital, cloud based service delivery; when you adopt  Mifos, you will be miles ahead and ready for the challenges of tomorrow.

Take some time to look at the recorded webinar and see how – together – we make impactful change.

 

 

October 16, 2014 Take a Moment to Applaud Financial Co-Operatives

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Join nearly 208 million credit union members in 103 countries who recognize and celebrate the credit union difference by taking a moment to reflect on the financial co-operatives history and to ponder its achievements.

International Credit Union (ICU) Day® has been celebrated on the third Thursday of October since 1948. The day is recognized to honor those who have dedicated their lives to financial inclusion, recognize the hard work of those working in the credit union / SACCO / Co-Operative community and show members appreciation.

This year’s ICU Day will take place on Oct. 16, 2014. Its theme, “Local Service. Global Good,” emphasizes credit unions’ positive impact in their communities and around the world.

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2014 Banana Skins – Using Technology To Manage Future Risks

banana-skinsThe 2014 Banana Skins report is out and although we’ve only just started to skim the report, the summarized findings once again point to the critical role of technology and the potential our platform has to address “future risks” facing the industry.

The Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation (CSFI), Citi Foundation, and CFI in their annual report on the risks and challenges facing the microfinance sector has pegged Strategy as one of the new areas of concern. Quoting the recap of the study, both internal and external stakeholders are concerned financial institutions aren’t looking forward enough and ready to respond to new forces/trends shaping the market: Read more

Documenting Technology Impact: Mifos ROI Model and Case Studies

Report examining the technology return on investment (ROI) realized by deploying Mifos® including a hands-on ROI tool and three in-depth case studies documenting technology ROI at four MFIs.

Technology is critical in building strong organizations that can respond nimbly to changes. It is especially important in the microfinance industry, which has grown rapidly over the past decade to serve more than 190 million people globally.  This series, undertaken through a partnership between The MasterCard Foundation and Grameen Foundation, examines the cost benefits realized by deploying Mifos® at four microfinance institutions and is a step in advancing knowledge about deploying a management information system at microfinance institutions using diverse operating models.

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