Investors buy into Musoni

VALUE ADDED SERVICES

|
Image: By BiztechAfrica
Investors buy into Musoni

Grameen Foundation, KfW and CARE's Access Africa Fund announced they have each purchased a 25% stake in Musoni Kenya, the first microfinance institution to provide financial services to the poor entirely via mobile phones.

Based in Nairobi, Kenya, it provides microloans largely to people who are underserved by the formal financial sector.

This investment will help Musoni Kenya grow its operations, deepen its penetration in rural areas where financial inclusion is lowest, and pave the way for it to receive a license to accept savings deposits from the Central Bank of Kenya.

According to the new World Bank Global Findex, two-thirds of the world's poor do not have bank accounts, partly because of the cost, distance and paperwork involved in using traditional banks. In sub-Saharan Africa, where traditional banking is hampered by the lowest density of physical bank branch infrastructure in the world, mobile money is taking root and providing a significant opportunity to increase access to financial services.

The Findex also found that in Kenya, the world leader in mobile money, 68% of adults use a mobile phone for money transactions. In contrast, a 2009 FinAccess survey showed that less than one half of Kenyans had access to formal financial services.

"Grameen Foundation's decade-long experience using mobile phones to accelerate poverty reduction in Africa has taught us that convenience and safety are critical to making financial services more accessible and useful to the poor. Musoni Kenya represents a 'next generation' of microfinance providers riding the technology revolution to provide better service, and we are pleased to support its efforts to expand these services to more rural communities for significant impact," said Alex Counts, president of Grameen Foundation.

"We are impressed with Musoni Kenya's expertise in mobile banking," said Lauren Hendricks, Tanzania-based executive director of CARE's Access Africa microfinance program and board member of MicroVest, the private investment advisor that manages the Access Africa Fund on CARE's behalf. "We look forward to continuing to support Musoni Kenya as it reaches future milestones."

"As one of the world's leading microfinance financiers, our investment in Musoni is one next step to specifically address the continent's challenges in overcoming distances. With its vast geographical surface and a much less dense population, it is vital to reach to the rural population in a cheaper way than building branches. The use of the mobile technology provides a way to foster income and employment for people living in rural areas and thus helps to fight poverty," said Dr. Thomas Duve, director of the Department of Africa Regional Programmes, KfW.

From its inception in 2010, Musoni Kenya has offered its services exclusively via mobile phones, with the goal of serving the poor and underbanked more efficiently and safely. Rather than traveling long distances with bundles of money to weekly meetings, its clients can repay their loans at any time during the week. This reduces the amount of time spent in meetings and allows clients to spend more time at their businesses and with family.

Musoni Kenya currently serves 7,300 and plans to increase its client base to 34,000 by 2013. With its new equity partners on board, it will also apply for license to accept savings deposits – another critical financial tool the poor need to improve their lives.

"This investment is a major milestone for Musoni Kenya. We are incredibly excited about working with our new partners and building upon their experience to further develop the Musoni Concept and take microfinance to the next level," said David James, CEO of Musoni Kenya.

Musoni BV, the holding company and initial investor in Musoni Kenya, will remain an equity partner.

"We are proud of this important milestone and we are looking forward to continuing to work in close partnership to propel further expansion and impact of Musoni's African operations," Bart van Eyk, CEO of Musoni BV. 



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

Search News

comments powered by Disqus

MORE VALUE ADDED SERVICES NEWS

EFInA lifts Nigeria mobile banking with $1.5m

Enhancing Financial Innovation & Access (EFInA) boosted the mobile money sector by splashing $1.5 million or about N421.5 million from its Innovation Grant on Diamond Bank’s Diamond Y’ello Account (DYA), a mobile banking platform which was built on MTN Xaas platform.  Read More

KCB M-PESA loan disbursements cross KSh10B mark

Revolutionary mobile-based bank account KCB M-PESA has advanced KSh10.3 billion in loans to its customers since inception about two years ago, boosting access to credit in Kenya. Read More

Airtel Money, WAEC enable candidates to check their results online

Airtel Money is enabling the purchase of the West African Examination Council (WAEC) results checker pins on its platform.  Read More

Airtel Money Card is now back, with online payments

Airtel Kenya has announced the return of its Airtel Money Card, enabling card holders the convenience of shopping, online payments and easy access to funds 24 hours a day.  Read More

Daystar University pioneers smartphone-based degree programmes

Daystar University has announced a strategic partnership with OneUni to launch Africa’s first smartphone-based degree programmes, the first of which is a Bachelor’s of Education for existing and aspiring teachers. Read More

MTN Ghana stimulates discussion on cashless society

As part of its 2016 Mobile Money Month celebration in the country, MTN Ghana has revisited the discussion on a cashless society and the need for stakeholders to take a critical look at its benefits again. Read More

WorldRemit calls for urgent restoration of money transfers to Nigeria

Hundreds of global remittance companies have been forced to cease transfers to Nigeria, says WorldRemit. Read More

Mobile Money – the paradox of costly convenience

The convenience of mobile money is being offset by the increased risk of fraud, report Kampala residents. Read More

Uber Kenya faces looming drivers’ strike

Kenyan drivers for digital taxi service Uber have threatened to embark on a strike from today over fare price cuts. Read More

Uber offers cashless payments in Accra through SMSGH

Uber, the innovative app that connects riders with drivers, has revealed to Biztechafrica that it has partnered with SMSGH to provide mobile payments to the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area (GAMA).  Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage EnterpriseSAP AfricaTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoiceMicrosoft 4AfrikaNetworks UnlimitedArbor NetworksEricssonTigo Ghana

FEATURED STORY

Financial services sees AI as both opportunity and threatFinancial services sees AI as both opportunity and threat

Banking is already a key area where technology is having an impact throughout Africa, and a new survey assesses the impact artificial intelligence will have on this sector.

IN DEPTH

Access and Use of ICT stats releasedAccess and Use of ICT stats released

Statistics Botswana has released the first results of the 2014 Information and Communication Technology Household Survey.

COMPANY NEWS

Tigo explores options to give customers a greater choice for 4G services in Ghana

Following her recent visit to Ghana, Cynthia Gordon, the CEO of Millicom Africa, has emphasized the remarkable growth opportunities in data and Tigo’s commitment to giving customers ...