Telenor believes that mobile financial services will become the new normal. People all over the world will go from restricted opening hours and few locations to having their bank in their hand. State of the art mobile and online banking will be for everyone, not only for the affluent.
Indeed, this has started to happen, and development is speeding up around the world. Telenor is a major player in this development.
Banking the unbanked
In emerging markets few people hold a bank account compared to the amount holding a mobile subscription. In Pakistan banking penetration is 12 % and mobile penetration is above 60%. Due to a more developed micro banking sector, Bangladesh has 40% bank penetration, but still a large unbanked population. In Thailand, the banking penetration in rural areas is very low, but also here mobile penetration is much higher. When we can use the mobile as a channel for banking services and the mobile agents as distribution for cash, large parts of the population can be financial included.
Mobile financial services may reduce the number of unbanked in Pakistan by 20 per cent by 2020. In India the number of people with formal savings accounts could increase by 142 million. In Bangladesh it could increase tax revenues with US$500 million. And in Serbia it could lead to 23,000 new jobs being created. These are some of the findings in a 2011 study, carried out by Boston Consulting Group on behalf of Telenor Group, exploring the effects of mobile financial services in five markets over the next decade.
The value proposition to the unbanked is very strong. People no longer have to rely on informal channels, do not have to spend hours in line to pay bills, have safe place to save, and can transfer money over distances – instantly!
Mobile banking in mature markets
Mobile banking plays a role in mature markets where banking penetration is high and the usage of electronic channels is already high, like the Nordic countries and the mature parts of emerging markets. Still, there are many types of transactions that can be better served by the convenient mobile, and cash transactions that can be turned electronic.
New technologies, like NFC (Near Field Communication) and secure identification using the SIM as the source of identification (BankID), plays an important role here. There is also a strong development in usage of mobile in coupons, vouchers, loyalty programs, etc, which will contribute to the usage of the mobile for financial services.
A fast growing business
Number of users of mobile financial services users in the world in 2011 was 160 million. This is expected to triple by 2016. There are more than 150 live mobile deployments in more than 83 countries. Telenor has been an early mover in this. (Source: Gartner, GSMA Wireless Intelligence).
Mobile financial services have the potential to become a substantial new business area for Telenor. The Telenor Group and the business units are ramping up efforts to grow the business.
Telenor is committed to exploring ways that the mobile phone can help meet banking and purchasing needs of people around the world. Through various programmes in all of its markets, Telenor is bringing banking services to the unbanked and giving mobile purchasing power to the masses.
Mobile financial services in the Telenor Group
Easypaisa was introduced by Telenor Pakistan in collaboration with Tameer Microfinance Bank in 2009 with the aim to bring financial inclusion to Pakistan. In a country where only 15% of the population has access to formal financial services, Easypaisa brings convenient, accessible and reliable mobile banking services for everyone.
Present at over 18,000 retail merchants, Easypaisa enables customers to pay their bills, make domestic and international remittances, open their own Mobile Accounts, utilize donation services, purchase air tickets, subscribe for savings and insurance service and also offers cash disbursement solutions for businesses and government institutions.
MobiCash in Bangladesh has offered BillPay services for the past four years. This is an agent-assisted utility bill payment services that targets the semi-urban and rural segment. MobiCash also offers ticketing services made available through the mobile phone.
dtac and KBANK introduced ATM SIM Project to their customers in 2007. ATM SIM enable dtac subscribers with account(s) in KBANK to do basic transactions of his/her account conventionally done through ATM on dtac’s ATM SIM. This co-branded banking service offers bill pay, fund transfer, balance check and ticket purchase.
Paysbuy, a dtac subsidiary company, provides online payment processing with a variety of payment channels, including credit cards, bank direct debits, cash at counters (at 7-Eleven and Tesco Lotus) and e-wallet. Now Paysbuy is serving merchants operating in Thailand and worldwide. Many leading Thai and international companies trust Paysbuy’s local capabilities and choose us as their partner for payment.
Telenor Serbia offers Platimo, a complete electronic payment system based on a SIM application. Users can pay their Telenor bills, top up prepaid accounts, authenticate transactions and transfer money.
The mobile shopping services offer a wide range of services, including payment for parking and motorway vignettes. The Mobile Payment service allows you to pay for certain products and services, transfer and receive money and settle your Telenor mobile phone or utility bills using your phone.
DiGi’s financial services comprises of DiGi SendMoney, DiGi Simple Prepaid Card, and DiGi Insurance:
DiGi SendMoney is a new international remittance service launched by DiGi that enables DiGi and non-DiGi customer to send money to key countries, starting with a partnership with the largest local bank. This is part of the DiGi SendMoney’s ambition to create an aggregator model where we would bring together key partners including Money Transfer Operator [MTO], banks and Remittance Service Providers [RSP] on both the sender and receiver side that would allow customer to pick and choose the service provider most suitable for them. The service would cover Over The Counter (OTC) with the ambition of having an extensive and robust mobile remittance service.
DiGi Simple Prepaid Card, the first telecom branded prepaid in Malaysia is offered in partnership with leading financial institutions in Malaysia. The card is loaded with the combination of merchant deals as well as specially designed telecom related rewards for DiGi customers.
Also, in partnership with market leading insurance corporations, DiGi Insurance currently offers its customers the ability to purchase Personal Accident Insurance and Travel Insurance packages directly via their mobile phones. DiGi is also currently piloting a mobile micro-insurance service, targeting migrant workers in Malaysia.
Uninor customers will be able to purchase movie tickets through their mobile account balance.