6 min read

The Future Of Financial Inclusion In Africa

Outsource Monetic Is enabling Mobile Money in Francophone Africa. The Senegalese fintech is piloting KaliSpot, an independent network of ATMs, that gives customers of any bank, fintech, or mobile money service 24/7 access to their money, with an emphasis on financial inclusion.

Picture courtesy of Outsource Monetic

Jordan Sawadogo

Investor, 500 Global

Published

30.09.22

Many have heard of ​​M-PESA, the pioneering mobile money service from Kenya. Similar services are now impacting growing economies in Africa, helping to open up opportunities to deliver better financial services to millions of people. 

That’s why we’re proud to support Outsource Monetic, 500 Global’s first investment in Francophone West Africa. Outsource is building the physical and digital infrastructure needed to create seamless connections between people and their money, which includes developing KaliSpot, an independent network of ATMs.

The Nuts & Bolts

Problem: Although cash transactions are disappearing in many places, Sub-Saharan Africa still plays an important role, including for disruptive services like mobile money. Cash remains a key on-and-off ramp for mobile money: out of $1 trillion in mobile money transactions in 2021, 42% of that was based on cash deposits or withdrawals. That creates issues, as handling these transactions accounts for a large chunk of operating costs (for instance, in 2016, mobile money providers reported that on average, 68% of their costs were operational expenditures). Operators rely heavily on field teams to recruit and retain customers, manage cash restocking, and handle cash-in and out transactions. That squeezes margins, and as more players enter the African mobile money market, incumbent operators are under increasing pressure to preserve those margins. 

Alongside mobile money operators, the region’s fintech and incumbent financial institutions have personnel-heavy operating models. ATM infrastructure in Francophone Africa also tends to be antiquated, and machines generally offer the most basic service: cash withdrawal. Reach is an issue too, with average ATM penetration in French-speaking West African countries standing at 6 units per 100,000 inhabitants. That’s far below other markets, such as Nigeria, which has nearly three times as many units per 100,000 people. 

Solution: Outsource provides banking-in-a-box solutions for mobile money operators, fintech and incumbent financial institutions in Francophone Africa to facilitate cash-in and cash-out transactions

and extend operating footprints without additional personnel. KaliSpot will offer a private network of automated and interactive teller machines built around brand-agnostic infrastructure and proprietary software, allowing mobile money users to access their cash 24/7. 

Outsource’s solutions can also help other fintech and banks, with its platform offering each segment a cost-effective way to facilitate cash-based transactions while also introducing tools like contactless payments, biometric authentication and interactive customer service (through video chats and AI-powered bots). As it provides these players with solutions, Outsource is building the physical and digital infrastructure that will eventually allow it to evolve from an outsourcing partner into a neobank positioned to serve Francophone Africa. 

Getting to know Outsource Monetic

At the helm is founder and CEO Mika Diol from Senegal, with 10 years of enterprise sales experience with Microsoft and Oracle. Mika is well connected within Francophone tech circles and is supported by a team with experience building hardware and software for ATMs. They understand the challenges their customers face. 

Why now?

At a time when countries in Francophone Africa are demonstrating a willingness to adopt new technologies, Outsource is positioned to ride a wave of growth in financial services. By 2021, over 60% of Africa’s fastest-growing economies will be in Francophone Africa, and mobile money adoption is only increasing in wake of the pandemic. Companies such as Kuda and Opay have already demonstrated that serving the underbanked is doable, yet overall penetration remains low in Francophone countries. Anglophone players can face difficulties crossing the French-English language barrier (not to mention different regulatory regimes). 

The future of Outsource Monetic and tackling financial inclusion issues

Outsource is generating interest from various customers, including piloting KaliSpot in Senegal and the Ivory Coast. 500 is excited to support the company as it rolls out its ATMs and works to unlock the region’s vibrant fintech ecosystem.

You can learn more about Outsource Monetic at: https://www.outsource-monetic.com/ 

 

Legal Disclaimers: 500 Startups programs (including accelerator programs), investor education services, strategic partnership consulting services and events are operated by 500 Startups Incubator, L.L.C. (together with its affiliates, “500 Startups”) and the funds advised by 500 Startups Management Company, L.L.C. do not participate in any revenue generated by these activities. Such programs and services are provided for educational and informational purposes only, and under no circumstances should any content provided as part of any such programs, services or events be construed as investment, legal, tax or accounting advice by 500 startups or any of its affiliates.

The views expressed here are those of the individual 500 Startups personnel or other individuals quoted and are not the views of 500 Startups or its affiliates. Certain information contained herein may have been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by 500 Startups. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, 500 Startups has not independently verified such information and makes no representations or warranties as to the accuracy of the information in this post or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements or links; 500 Startups has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein.

This content is provided for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, tax or accounting advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only. They do not constitute an investment recommendation, offer to sell or solicit to purchase any investment securities, or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors and may not be relied upon when deciding to invest in any fund managed by 500 Startups. (An offering to invest in an 500 Startups fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by 500 Startups. There can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results.

Charts and graphs provided herein are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Unless otherwise stated, figures are based on internal estimates and have not been independently verified. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. All logos and trademarks of third parties referenced herein are the logos and trademarks of their respective owners and any inclusion of such trademarks or logos does not imply or constitute any approval, endorsement or sponsorship of 500 Startups by such owners.

Please see Section 2 of our Terms of Use for additional important information.

Jordan Sawadogo

Investor, 500 Global

Recent news & articles

See all articles →
500 Global Names Amal Enan Partner in Egypt with Plans to Open New Office in Cairo
Egypt
3 min read

500 Global Names Amal Enan Partner in Egypt with Plans to Open New Office in Cairo

We're also partnering with Egypt’s Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA), thus deepening our commitment to the phenomenal founders that have made Egypt one of the most vibrant startup scenes in the Middle East and Africa.
Read more →
A Dispatch to Founders from TechCrunch Disrupt 2022
founders
5 min read

A Dispatch to Founders from TechCrunch Disrupt 2022

Even in difficult times we see opportunities to build game-changing businesses.
Read more →
Birthing Southeast Asia’s New Tech Giants
Podcast
27 min read

Birthing Southeast Asia’s New Tech Giants

500 Global made its first investment in the region 10 years ago. Managing Partner Vishal Harnal looks back at his and 500’s journey, and tells us what’s in store for the future.
Read more →
Christina Cai
Podcast
Episode 19

On a Quest to Make Health Insurance More Accessible

On this episode of Rise of the Next, Christina Cai talks about how her company Lydia.ai applies non-traditional metrics to help insurers underwrite health plans.
Read more →