Maviance Launches Innovative Microfinance Solution in the African Market
Our company launched the most recent version of its mobile microfinance solution during the largest regional business trade fair in Central Africa - PROMOTE 2011 trade fair in Cameroon.
Following the honouring of Muhammad Yunus, the founder of Grameen Bank; in 2006 with the Nobel Peace Prize "for their efforts through microcredit to create economic and social development from below"; the microfinance industry has been moved into the spotlight and has been considered the “holy grail” for empowering the unbanked and providing millions of African entrepreneurs a source of funding to grow their businesses and themselves into prosperity. In this light, this industry within the African context has experienced significant growth during the last ten years.
This explosive growth has led current systems to quickly reach their operational limits, while at the same time the pace of innovation has been slow.
Our company moved in to fill this gap by providing mobile microfinance solutions.
After a series of workshops and review sessions with microfinance companies and partners in the microfinance industries across three African countries; we designed and developed a mobile microfinance application which focuses on automating tasks performed by loan officers on the field, while increasing financial transparency along the entire service chain from the customer, to the field loan officer, to the branch and all the way to the head office.
In order to fully understand the innovation provided by this product, look at the activities of how this solution improves processes in the sample microfinance institution below.
The Current State of Microfinance in the African Market
Each day, the ABC Finance Ltd deploys its field loan officers (each equipped with a pen and book) on the ground to collect the savings and loan payments from its clients. Once in front of a client, the loan officer collects the savings or loan payments in cash, registers it in his book. The customer countersigns in the book and he issues him a receipt. He then moves on to the next client. Midway however, he could falsify the registered information, get rid of the documents, and even loan out the client’s savings without the knowledge of the customer or the management at ABC Finance Ltd.
How our Mobile Microfinance Application Fills the Gap
In order to improve this service, ABC Finance may opt for an innovative solution and acquire our Mobile Microfinance Application as well as Smartphones and mobile printers for each field officer. We shall install a server at the premises of ABC Finance Ltd that transmits data to the mobile Smartphones of the field officers either in real-time or at the end of the day during synchronization.
From this server the ABC Finance loan officer can download the client’s file onto his Smartphone his field visits to his clients, he can receive loan repayments and savings deposits from his clients either as cash or using mobile money options via the Mobile Microfinance Application. He then prints a receipt using the mobile printer for the customer to confirm the transaction. In addition, the system can also be configured so that all customers of the company systematically receive an SMS on their phone or an email for every transaction, eliminating the possibility of manipulating data or unauthorized lending.
ABC Finance Ltd central server is updated in real time with the data entered by the field loan officer. With the help of powerful statistical functionality of the application reliably and accurate information is available at all times to the branch and head office.
Many of the companies at the trade fair did recognize that this innovation is the only viable option they have. It offers security by fighting against fraudulent activities; optimizing time and increasing transparency in operations leading to service improvement for customers.
The Mobile Microfinance Application is based on our company’s proprietary Smart Mobile Application Platform (SMAP).
About Smart Mobile Application Platform (SMAP)
The Smart Mobile Application Platform (SMAP) is a scalable and extensible technology foundation used to aggregate any data source inside or outside the enterprise, over any wireless network worldwide, and transmit this data to any mobile end device. It uses the latest standards-based technologies and consists of different modules that are tightly integrated to deliver an end-to-end solution for any business application. Other maviance solutions built using SMAP include our Mobile Insurance Application, Mobile Metering Application and our Mobile Sales Automation Application.