When BFA's FIBR Program launched four years ago, it outlined assumptions on how smartphones, connectivity and digitization would accelerate financial inclusion in Africa. David Porteous explores which assumptions still hold and the lessons learned.
Small merchants in emerging markets are increasingly adopting digital commerce to expand their customer base and market their goods and services on online marketplaces. These merchants are using digital platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Jumia and WhatsApp to promote their businesses, sell their goods and services, communicate with clients and suppliers and to receive payments.
At FIBR, we have been researching superplatforms to determine their value proposition to micro, small & medium enterprises (MSMEs). What value do these platforms provide directly and indirectly to merchants? How are these superplatforms helping merchants to build and grow their businesses? Who are the merchants that sell online and what is the role of trust in these interactions?
Our latest research shows that small, informal merchants are using social media and messaging platforms such as Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram to advertise their business, market goods and services, and communicate with clients. The uses, interactions, and workarounds by micro, small & medium enterprises (MSME) in Africa to sell online through these platforms offer insights into 1) personas 2) needs such as for financing their business, and 3) product and service concepts that could help small merchants close gaps in skills, working capital, and business intelligence.
Join FIBR’s webinar and panel discussion to learn how merchants benefit from superplatforms and digital commerce. The webinar covers how merchants are using digital platforms and how superplatforms can better serve merchants.
When: 28th February 2019, 9am-10:00am EST
Meet the Speakers
Superplatforms Tumblr - updates from our ongoing research and thinking
FIBR Superplatforms - a compilation of our work up to date and our research hypotheses
FIBR Superplatforms Whitepaper - the seminal paper by FIBR that examines the rise of superplatforms and their potential in pulling users in Africa into formal and digital economies
Informal retailers are tapping social media and messaging apps for e-commerce. We conducted field research in Tanzania to study merchant practices, and understand the value proposition superplatforms present to merchants and vice-versa. Read our insights from the study.
In emerging markets, small merchants or micro and small enterprises are increasingly using social networks, e-commerce & messaging platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Jumia and WhatsApp to promote their businesses. However, generating and maintaining trust online is still a struggle for the majority of these business. We provide 3 strategies to create and maintain trust with customers online. Read our blog.
Njeri is a 29-year-old single woman living in Nairobi. She is a budding entrepreneur selling vitenges both on online and offline platforms. She has sold to all the potential customers within her network and is looking for other platforms to sell her products. How can she use superplatforms to sell her merchandise? What are the advantages of selling on superplatfoms? What repercussions will they have for local businesses and financial services providers? Our latest blog post explores what this means bfa.works/Njeri-and-the-superplatforms
The entry of Superplatforms into Africa is inevitable, and there will be repercussions for financial services providers, regulators and customers. There’s a huge opportunity for providers to work with local Fintechs and businesses and to expand and create positive two-way relationships with small and medium enterprises. Read the blog and download the report on Inclusive Digital Ecosystems of the Future.
David Porteous / Olga Morawczynski
For decades experts have claimed that banks are dead or dying, but they have persisted. However, the entrance of new internet giants or “superplatforms” into financial services may finally spell doom for some traditional financial institutions.