For the billions of unbanked or underbanked people in the developing world, the key to poverty alleviation lies in economic empowerment and inclusion. Increasingly, research is showing that client centricity opens the door to financial inclusion within these communities.
This was reinforced in a presentation recently put forward by The Mastercard Foundation, a nonprofit aiming to advance financial inclusion in the developing world through increasing access to financial education and services, most particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa. Reflecting on the learnings of the Symposia on Financial Inclusion (SoFI) of previous years, the recently released presentation offers an insight into the role of client centricity in meeting the financial needs of the world’s poorest.
The emerging consensus within the world of financial inclusion is that a genuine shift in organisational culture is needed – both internally and externally – towards the true needs of the poor. Looking at how to support and accompany low-income individuals on a ‘journey’ to financial inclusion, whilst complicated, is where growth potential lies.
At SoFI, there is growing unanimity amongst industry thought-leaders and financial inclusion experts that meaningful and sustainable focus on the true financial desires and requirements of people living in poverty will lead to scalable and impactful development.
Within the finance space, thinking small and considering the needs of smallholders and low-income individuals is far from the most obvious approach, however, results are speaking for themselves. Organisations such as MicroCred Senegal and NBS Bank Malawi are a testament to the results client centricity can have for both the alleviation of poverty and the success of financial service providers.
The Mastercard Foundation aim to advance education and financial inclusion to drive growth and development in developing countries.
“Be open, listen and collaborate to move our agenda of financial inclusion forward.” – Ann Miles, Director, Financial Inclusion, The Mastercard Foundation
See the full presentation here.