Mobile money and the way it has enabled African societies to evolve into a wider economic inclusion is one of the main topics that will come under discussion at this year’s upcoming AfricaCom conference in Cape Town.
Mobile Money – or making payments via your cell phone – is becoming the great differentiator in African societies, to such an extent that it has evolved into a tool for wider economic inclusion and social enablement.
In his annual ‘Gates News’ newsletter Microsoft founder, Bill Gates, wrote about the impact that smartphones and mobile banking would have in the next 15 years. He said “digital banking will give the poor more control over their assets and help them transform their lives and by 2030, two billion people who don’t have a bank account today will be storing money and making payment with their phones”.
Sub Saharan Africa currently hosts 52% of all live mobile money deployments worldwide. This statistic clearly shows a significant need for quality mobile financial services within the African – and global – society. It’s this need that has created the huge business opportunity for Mobile Money. A handful for African operators have led the way in addressing these societal needs by developing interoperable services. At the same time they’ve leveraged a broader reach to customers and built a robust business from their mobile money verticals.
Innovations in Tanzania have led the way for interoperability. Operators such as Tigo, Airtel, Zantel, and now Vodacom’s M-Pesa service have initiated a new wave of collaboration between their respective mobile money services.
At AfricaCom 2015, the continent’s largest Telecoms, ICT and tech event, delegates will have the opportunity to engage with expert speakers discussing the key issues embodying the direction and evolution of this pioneering industry.
Adam Thompson, Africa and Middle East, Com World Series Head of Content, said: “High level representatives from all the leading companies in the mobile money business will be speaking at AfricaCom in the Mobile Money stream. Along with all other tier one operators they will be focusing on many themes, including interoperability during the continent’s most focused and relevant meeting for professionals in mobile financial services.”
Discussion topics will included:
Achieving interoperability through mobile financial services
Developing relevant and profitable Mobile Financial Services
Learnings on launching payments via an OTT
Chief regulatory panel – nurturing innovation whilst maintaining regulation
Further dialogue around the interoperability between mobile operators and banking services; mobile money and convergence with traditional merchant payment systems; and the evolution of nano-finance through mobile will also form part of this leading-edge theme.
Thompson said: “If you are a network operator in the mobile money space, a financial institution operating mobile services, or regulator from telecoms or banking sectors, register for your complementary pass to Mobile Money and AfricaCom today. You’ll learn how to reach a broader range of people across multiple regions, while maintaining high service quality. The discussions will share insight on how to launch and scale interoperable mobile money services; identify and share best practices, guidelines and processes while engaging regulatory support.”
AfricaCom, now in its 18th year, brings together senior decision-makers from the entire digital ecosystem, from all over Africa. Last year the conference was attended by 9000 digital movers and shakers, with more than 375 of the worlds most innovative brands showcasing their products and services at the event. 2015 is expected to exceed this number and is anticipated to be the best place on the continent to learn how to engage your customers in an every changing digital market, and make the best of this global marketing trend – the future of marketing.
Speakers at this event will include; Asif Aziz of Expresso Telecom Group, Fredrik Jejdling of Ericsson, Li Peng of Huawei, Willem Hendrickx of Alcatel-Lucent, Dr. Harry Gombachika of Malawi Telecommunications Limited, Mariam Altman of Telkom, Mark Shoebridge of Uganda Telecom, Biola Edun of Etisalat Nigeria, Nic Rudnick of Liquid Telecom, Dominique Baron of Horus Telecom, Sherry Zameer of Gemalto.