FMO and above & beyond launch Fintech platform for African Banks to accelerate financial inclusion

    The Hague, 18 September 2017 – FMO, the Dutch Development Bank, together with Miami based Fintech and digital transformation strategists above & beyond (a&b), today launch “ FinForward”, a marketplace where Fintech companies, Financial Institutions (FIs) and Mobile Money Providers (MMPs) in Africa are matched. After matching, they enter a testing environment where the banks and Fintechs can test and integrate new financial technology solutions in a safe and secure manner.

    The objective of the new platform is to accelerate the digitization of the financial industry in Africa by supporting innovation of the core business with digital solutions. The matching and integration tool will make global Fintech companies accessible and top-of-mind to African financial institutions in order to help them to reduce costs, innovate, add services, tap into new revenue streams and work towards open banking platforms. It will also enable them to service difficult to reach segments such as the bottom of the pyramid, women and small entrepreneurs.

    FMO‘s Andrew Shaw, Senior Fintech Specialist, “We feel that the Fintech conversation is less about who is the disruptor and who is the incumbent, and more about the ecosystem and new partnerships and alliances. We want to stimulate collaboration where it makes commercial sense, and where we can improve financial inclusion.”

    “FinForward is one of a kind initiative that facilitates collaboration between Financial Institutions, Mobile Money Providers and Fintech companies. We are building a thriving interconnected global ecosystem integrated through one single platform”, added Jorge Ruiz, Co-Founder & CEO, above & beyond tech. Fintech as a game changer for emerging markets – reaching the unbanked African financial institutions recognize Fintech as a game changer that allows them to increase efficiency and expand their client/product base. However, they admit that they have difficulties finding, choosing, testing and implementing Fintech companies and their solutions.

    The high demand for financial services in emerging markets provides a large market opportunity for innovative Fintechs using new financial technology such as block chain, data analytics, artificial intelligence and new distribution systems such as online, mobile and agent networks. Fintechs for emerging markets are active in areas such as balance sheet lending, platform lending, payment solutions, software-as-a-service (SaaS), digital field applications, alternative credit scoring, predictive data analytics and transaction verification via block chain.

    FinForward, a 9-month program The 9-month program aims to link Fintechs worldwide with financial institutions in Africa. How does it work? – Outreach – Banks, Mobile Money Providers and Fintechs are invited to join
    – Fintech Opportunity Scan – Participating banks and mobile money providers define their problems and needs – Matching – Pairing of Fintechs based on problem definition – Acceleration & Integration – Testing of Fintech solutions in a sandbox and integrating the technology into the bank’s operations – Showcase – demonstrate success during showcase days About FMO FMO is the Dutch development bank. As a leading impact investor, FMO supports sustainable private sector growth in developing countries and emerging markets by investing in ambitious projects and entrepreneurs. FMO believes that a strong private sector leads to economic and social development, and has a more than 45-year proven track record of empowering people to employ their skills and improve their quality of life.

    FMO focuses on three sectors that have high development impact: financial institutions, energy, and agribusiness, food & water. With a committed portfolio of EUR 9.0 billion spanning over 92 countries, FMO is one of the larger bilateral private sector developments banks globally.

     

    For more information, please visit www.fmo.nl . Press contact FMO: Renée Schnitzler Senior Communications Advisor T: +31 70 314 9308 E: R.Schnitzler@fmo.nl