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Return on Investment: Making Remittances Work for Africa

Vibrant social networks are what make Kenya unique and modern technology is making them functional.

Friends and family make for a happier and more fulfilled life but in Kenya, they’re also the key to survival.

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Payments

Reducing Costs and Scaling Up UK to Africa Remittances Through Technology

Sending money to Africa is more expensive than anywhere else in the world, according to new research due to be published at this week’s Global Remittance Conference in New York. The report argues that existing technology – like regional automated clearing houses, remittance payment processing hubs and aggregators – could all make sending money from the UK to Africa much, much cheaper.

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FinAccess

January 2017 quarterly newsletter

This quarter’s e-newsletter is out!

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Blog

In Kenya, phones replace bank tellers

Pauline Kimari is a pharmacist in Ndaragwa, Kenya, a small town several hours’ drive north of Nairobi. She moved there from rural Muranga, several hours away, to open a small shop, Ndaragwa Joy Chemist. It is white with blue and green doors and a blue bench inside. She sells medicine and cosmetics.

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Annual Lectures

Out of Africa: notes from a visit to Kenya

I spent a week in Kenya, courtesy of Financial Sector Deepening, an initiative of a number of aid agencies, including Britain’s Department for International Development, the Swedish government, and the Gates Foundation. 

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Annual Lectures

The state of the world and the future of finance

Leading British economist delivers third annual lecture on financial inclusion

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Dataset

M-PESA panel survey 2008-2014

In order to understand the take‐up, use, and impacts of M‐PESA in Kenya, US based Principal Investigators William Jack (Georgetown) and Tavneet Suri (MIT Sloan School of Management) conducted a set of five surveys across Kenya, starting in yearly between 2008 and 2011, with a fifth survey conducted in 2014 to look at the longer-term impacts of M-PESA.

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Annual Lectures

PICTURES: Kay and industry leaders discuss the future of finance

Just what is finance for?

On Wednesday 8th February 2017, John Kay met with 18 financial sector industry leaders to discuss this question and the future of finance in Kenya.

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Annual Lectures

Making finance serve the needs of the economy

Over 250 policymakers, industry players, regulators, lecturers, students, financial sector analysts, development practitioners and other guests gathered at the National Museum’s Louis Leakey Auditorium on Thursday 9th February 2017 for the 3rd FSD Kenya annual lecture on financial inclusion.

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Annual Lectures

Kay shares why it’s possible to have ‘too much of a good thing.’

During his delivery of the 3rd FSD Kenya annual lecture on financial inclusion, John Kay argued that the challenge for emerging economies is to avoid the mistakes of the west and to instead focus on building a financial sector that is focussed on the core needs of the non-financial economy.

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Annual Lectures

Have you booked your seat?

Leading British economist to deliver the 2017 lecture

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Welcome to the 3rd FSD Kenya annual lecture!
Annual Lectures

Welcome to the 3rd FSD Kenya annual lecture!

John Kay is a renowned British economist, and until recently, a columnist with London’s Financial Times (FT).

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Blog

Studying shocks to identify opportunities for financial service providers

Diversification of risk, not putting your eggs in one basket, hustling – whichever word or phrase you use, Robert, a boda boda (motorcycle taxi) rider, embodies this spirit.

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Financial Diaries

Policy expert welcomes new era for financial sector innovation

Kenya’s annual financial inclusion lecture sets out how to protect consumers and drive growth in financial services

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Financial Diaries

The 2nd FSD Kenya annual lecture on financial inclusion

Rafe Mazer was the speaker at the 2nd FSD Kenya annual lecture on financial inclusion. His presentation shared how we can develop our own “test and learn” – the way in which financial service providers and regulators collaborate to allow for new solutions – for consumer protection.

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Financial Diaries

The long-run poverty and gender impacts of mobile money

The research is based on a long-term series of five surveys undertaken on M-Pesa in Kenya supported by FSD Kenya and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

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Events

Have you booked your seat?

Registration is open!

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Events

“The increasingly crowded savannah”: The 2nd FSD Kenya annual lecture

This year’s annual lecture will be delivered by Rafe Mazer, a Financial sector specialist at CGAP.

Join us for what we expect will be a stimulating discussion on competition and consumer protection in Kenya’s financial sector.

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Financial Diaries

The increasingly crowded savannah

Policymakers, academics, industry players, donors and other stakeholders gathered at the Crowne Plaza Hotel on Thursday 8th December for the 2nd FSD Kenya annual lecture on financial inclusion.

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Blog

The tea bonus: a blessing or a growing dependency? Tea farmers from Embu tell their story

This year, the price of a kilo of tea reached a five-year high. Every October, tea farmers in Kenya receive a “tea bonus”; the second lump sum payment for tea delivered to the Kenya Tea Development Authority (KTDA) during the year. The first lump sum, the “mini bonus”, is paid each April.

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Financial Diaries

The Growth of M-Shwari in Kenya – A Market Development Story

M-Shwari (meaning ‘calm’ in Kiswahili) is a combined savings and loans product launched through a collabo­ration between the Commercial Bank of Africa (CBA) and Safaricom.

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Consumer insights

Finance & fortune

How exactly do financial services impact low income Kenyans? In this note, we extract the stories of eight respondent households from the Financial Diaries.

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Consumer insights

Small “b” biashara

Self-employment is a major source of income for low income Kenyans, and Financial Diaries respondents are no exception. When we talked to respondents in 2015, two years after the close of the original Diaries, those whose economic lives were improving pointed to business returns as one of the main drivers of their success.

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Blog

Informal vs formal: The need for financial services to complement, not compete

Our third “Field Friday” exercise reveals lessons for formal financial service providers to learn from informal services.

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Consumer insights

Trickling down & climbing up

In late 2015, we followed up with Financial Diaries households to check in on their economic lives two years after the initial Diaries study ended. We wanted to know how they are doing now, the factors driving changes in their economic lives, and the role that financial services and financial choices were playing in their economic trajectories.

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Financial Diaries

A buck short: What Financial Diaries tell us about building financial services that matter to low-income women

This report draws on Financial Diaries data from India, Kenya, and Mexico to enhance the field’s understanding of women’s financial lives, and to highlight provider-led opportunities to better serve this important market segment.

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Blog

Transparency in finance: Is it a matter of life and death?

Financial institutions play a key role in enhancing trust in the financial system

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Credit market development

Credit on the cusp: Strengthening credit markets for upward mobility in Africa

Enthusiasm around the once-popular “Africa Rising” narrative is abating in the face of slower-than-expected growth, macro volatility deriving from continued reliance on raw material exports in many countries, and the reality of persistently high inequality.

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Blog

From observations to opportunities: How the voice of the customer can guide innovation

To increase access to finance in the agricultural sector, various players have implemented initiatives to help smallholder farmers and pastoralists to access financial solutions. The many initiatives over time have had varying degrees of success.

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