Hello Mifos Community,
There are still 2.5 billion people worldwide that do not have access to basic financial services. Financial inclusion is working to bring this number down. However, financial inclusion only works when available. It is costly to implement and difficult to access for many developing countries. This is why the Mifos Initiative has been working to develop Financial Inclusion 2.0, an innovative approach to allow every person access to financial services using just their phone.
Mobile Money in Ecuador
In 2013, Ecuador reported that there were more mobile phone lines than citizens in their country. Yet, 60% of the Ecuadorian population does not have access to financial services, and that number only gets higher in rural areas. Realizing this, the Ecuadorian government saw an opportunity where a mobile electronic payment system could be the answer to their financial inclusion problems. Ecuador implemented the first-ever state-run mobile electronic payment system that is low cost and easy to access for everyone that has a mobile phone.
Financial Inclusion 2.0 in Ecuador
Mifos, the Ecuador government, and a national network of coop associations are working together to offer financial services to everyone in Ecuador. Using the Mifos Financial Inclusion Cloud alongside Ecuador’s electronic payment system, Financial Inclusion 2.0 is being brought to life. The delivery of digital financial services using the Mifos Financial Inclusion Cloud is fast, low cost, accessible, and simple.
Mifos is the Innovation that Powers the Innovators
Mifos Executive Director, Craig Chelius, made the exciting announcement – Mifos was going to partner with Ecuador to bring Financial Inclusion 2.0 to their country. The announcement was made at Kruger Labs. KrugerLabs is the innovation hub for technology in Ecuador, providing startups with the resources they need in order to succeed. Craig was joined by Javier Borkenztain of $ERO and Wladmir Taco of IOU FinTech to introduce Mifos to an audience filled with private bank executives, corporate bank executives, IT Professionals, and more. $ERO and IOU FinTech are both organizations that have built solutions on top of the Mifos platform.
The presentation to the broader financial services community, was the highlight of a very busy week that saw Mifos meeting with the Ecuador Ministry of Economic Policy, the Central Bank, Banco Desarrollo, RENAFIPSE, and CONAFIPS.
What the Future Holds
Although it is still unclear what the future holds, the possibilities are endless. Ecuador believes that the introduction of this electronic money system could be the starting point to facilitating other services such as purchasing insurance or providing credit. With the integration of Mifos into their electronic money system, Ecuador has created an opportunity to bank the unbanked and change many lives for the better.
Jacob Kobzi, Business Development Intern