The adoption of mobile money is increasing with 208 live deployments for unbanked services in 83 countries, compared to 178 in 74 countries as of January, asccording to GSMA’s 2013 Mobile Money Adoption Survey. Another 117 deployments are planned over the coming months.
The report underscores the critical role of mobile and mobile network operators (MNOs) in driving the adoption of convenient and affordable financial services among unbanked and under-banked individuals around the world.
“The impressive and encouraging results of the study demonstrate that mobile money services are increasingly reaching scale and are becoming even more essential in providing convenient and affordable financial services to the underserved,” said Chris Locke, Managing Director, GSMA Mobile for Development.
One point that is clearly illustrated in the survey is the increasingly competitive landscape for mobile money services. Globally, mobile money services were launched in nine markets in 2013 and the majority of these launches were in markets where mobile money services already existed.
At least two or more mobile money services are now available in 51 markets, compared to 40 markets at the end of 2012 and 33 at the end of 2011. Further, 24 of these markets each have three or more mobile money services, offering even greater choice to consumers. Mobile money is now becoming a mainstream service for MNOs rather than a differentiator; this is especially true in Sub-Saharan Africa, which boasts 53 per cent of all live mobile money services and where services are available in 36 out of 47 countries in the region.
The Adoption Survey gives insights into the development of mobile money services globally and shows specifically how mobile money is enabling the financial inclusion of unbanked and under-banked people. The findings show that the adoption of mobile money services by customers is rising and that an increasing number of services are reaching scale. The GSMA has identified three mobile money services that each exceeded one million active users between June 2012 and June 2013 and globally, there are at least nine services that currently have more than one million active users.
The full results from the 2013 Mobile Money Adoption Survey will be published at the GSMA Mobile World Congress 2014 in Barcelona. For more information on the GSMA’s Mobile Money for the Unbanked programme, visit www.gsma.com/mmu.