Tuesday, 22 May 2018

Bringing mobile banking to the developing world

By Chris Kelly, Total Telecom
Wednesday 18 April 18

Huawei is helping banks and telcos deliver mobile financial services to 152 million people in 19 developing nations across the globe

Shrinking margins and crowded markets are forcing telcos to evolve their core business offerings around the world and the provision of financial services is now a key part of the revenue mix for most telecoms operators.  Bringing financial services to millions of people in the developing world who previously had limited access to banking, has the potential to revolutionise the lives of millions of people…

Shrinking margins and crowded markets are forcing telcos to evolve their core business offerings around the world and the provision of financial services is now a key part of the revenue mix for most telecoms operators. 

Bringing financial services to millions of people in the developing world who previously had limited access to banking, has the potential to revolutionise the lives of millions of people, while simultaneously reducing costs for banks and providing a much-needed revenue stream for telcos.

Huawei is at the front of the queue of companies looking to help telcos and banks roll out financial services to their hard to reach customers.

In countries like Bangladesh, Huawei is helping workers in urban areas send money home to their families in the countryside. 

"This is the real value of technology, when you can help to transform people's lives. We can deliver financial services to hard to reach communities at very, very low cost," said Liu Limin, president of the Financial Services Sector Enterprise Business Group at Huawei, during a round table event in Shenzhen. 

Bangladesh Is one of the world's most densely populated and underdeveloped regions. With over 165 million people, its per capita GDP is just $1,330. More than 70 per cent of its population live in rural areas where banking services are unavailable and 85 per cent of people in Bangladesh do not have personal bank accounts. 

Through the company's Huawei Pay service, workers in urban areas like Dhaka and Chittagong can safely and securely transfer money to family members in rural areas using their smart phones. Family members are then able to withdraw cash by visiting a nearby agent (in this case, bKash). 

Through its Huawei Pay service, Huawei is active in 19 countries across the world and has over 152 million users. The service facilitates 35 million transactions every day. 

In addition to the obvious benefits for the end user, banks can also greatly benefit from schemes like these. 

"For banks, the cost of handling cash far exceeds the cost of cashless technology. We can help banks reduce their costs and pass the savings directly on to their customers," explains Limin. 

The provision of mobile banking services is also a viable revenue stream for companies like Huawei, who work closely with the telecommunications industry. Last year, revenue from Huawei's Enterprise Business Group, in which the Financial Services division sits, rocketed by 35.1 per cent to CNY54.5 billion. Huawei currently serves more than 300 financial institutions from around the world, including 6 of the world's top 10 banks.

"I can tell you that the revenue for Huawei's Financial Services business unit has increased fourfold over the last four years," said Limin. 

With growth like that, it is easy to imagine that Financial Services will continue to be a big part of Huawei's revenue mix for years to come. 

  

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

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