A few days before Christmas Voahirana, a small restaurant owner in Madagascar was too busy serving her customers. Voahirana could only wish that she had more funds to take advantage of the peak season and earn more profit, and then her phone buzzed.
She received a text message from a local microfinance agency on the release of her digital cash loan. Voahirana immediately rushed to withdraw the cash and bought additional stocks.
Since its creation, microfinance has been a valuable tool in helping not only the poor and the unbanked but for SMEs (entrepreneurs and solopreneurs) as well. Digital cash loans are definitely handy when it comes to meeting immediate needs, whether for personal or for business use.
The objective to expand outreach to a broader scope has inspired microfinance institutions to find new ways to bridge the gap between the unbanked and the access to financial services. One of the development steps taken by microfinance institutions is to leverage technology and innovations.
Mobile devices have made it easy for us to apply for a loan. With the technology coming and going in our daily lives, many financial tools seem to be at our fingertips.
Musoni Kenya was the first MFI in the world to leverage mobile technology to offer accessible financial services to more people at a faster rate. The concept was born out of Musoni’s desire to improve the quality of financial services available to the poor people in Kenya.
Globally, there are more than two billion people who still do not have access to banks but even then, they have other means of getting financial tools through their mobiles.
According to GSMA’s 2017 State of the Industry Report on Mobile Money, there are already 690 million registered accounts worldwide, which makes mobile money the leading microfinance payment platform for Fintech.
Blockchain technology is a revolutionary system of record-keeping through distributed ledgers. Unlike traditional record-keeping systems which are centralized by nature and can be manipulated, blockchain is decentralized. All information is broadcast to and recorded by every node in the network instead of having a central database.
AssetStream is taking the microfinance industry to the next level with the blockchain as mentioned above. By leveraging on blockchain technology, the AssetStream platform is designed to deliver faster and more secure transactions for borrowers and lenders.
AssetStream runs on blockchain network (Stellar protocol); therefore, every transaction on the platform is easy to validate and impossible to tamper with. With blockchain as the underlying technology for the AssetStream platform, all transactions are securely done between the lenders and borrowers without the need for intermediaries.
Become a part of the microfinancing revolution
It’s always exciting to be a part of something life-changing. Voahirana, other SME owners and you (as an individual or a company) can obtain much-needed financial services on a universally comfortable platform that carries many benefits for the unbanked, banked and underbanked.