Mobile-Based Credit Offers from Orange Money
The Malian microfinance agency PAMF (Première Agence de Microfinance au Mali) partners with Orange, via their payment and money transfer service, to improve local financial inclusion levels. This agreement will lead them to propose a new mobile-based savings and credit solution for Orange Money users.
This digital service called Singa Ni Mara, is accessible 24/7. It allows customers to save money and apply for loans in a matter of seconds from their mobile phone. It is mostly intended to provide low income households access to financial services.
Orange Money account holders can subscribe at one of their branches/agents through filling in a dedicated form. Once registered, they can save from 100 CFA francs (and earn 3.5%). They can also check whether or not they may be granted a loan, and apply for a credit line up to 50,000 CFA (to be repaid within 30 days, incl. 2% interest rate). A real-time tracking service has been added so they can keep an eye on their application, and even use the amount they saved to pay back all or part of the loan they subscribed.
For now, this solution distributed by Orange Money is only available in Bamako, but should be rolled out in other towns in Mali as of August. PAMF claims 17,000 customers and $2.5 million in loans, as well as $2 million in deposits.
Comments – Orange Sets Forth Ambitious Plan in Africa
Orange has been making adjustments to their strategy and planning to expand their reach in Africa. In March, they also reported they requested that their banking operations be extended in Africa. They applied for a licence from the West African Economic and Monetary Union (Union Économique et Monétaire Ouest-Africaine).
In the meantime, they keep diversifying their range of financial services via enhancing Orange Money. This payment service now has 37 million customers worldwide. The new micro-credit offer comes in addition to their already in place mobile payment, crowdfunding and money transfer services. Mali has been selected for a good reason, too: more than 80% of the population are still excluded from conventional financial services.
In April 2018, PAMF Madagascar introduced an equivalent offer, called m-kajy, in partnership with Orange Money. This solution has been a success so far, with strong subscription levels and many credit lines granted in just two months. PAMF aims for a similar goal, i.e.: making savings and credit options available to underbanked customers.