FMO, the Dutch development bank, is joining forces with above & beyond to offer FinForward, a platform for financial inclusion in Africa. FinForward matches fintech companies, Financial Institutions (FIs) and Mobile Money Providers (MMPs). The platform provides a testing environment in which participating banks and Fintechs can test and integrate new financial technology solutions in a safe and secure manner.
The new platform aims to accelerate the digitization of the financial industry in Africa. The matching and integration tool will help fintech companies accessible and African financial institutions to them to reduce costs, innovate, add services, tap into new revenue streams and work towards open banking platforms.
Andrew Shaw, FMO’s Senior FinTech Specialist, said:
“We feel that the FinTech conversation is less about who is the disruptor and who is the incumbent, and more about the ecosystem and new partnerships and alliances. We want to stimulate collaboration where it makes commercial sense, and where we can improve financial inclusion.”
Jorge Ruiz, Co-Founder & CEO, Above & Beyond Tech, added:
“FinForward is one of a kind initiative that facilitates collaboration between Financial Institutions, Mobile Money Providers and FinTech companies. We are building a thriving interconnected global ecosystem integrated through one single platform.”
FinForward was launched today at FMO’s headquarters in The Hague. It was attended by above & beyond’s CEO Jorge Ruiz, CTO Mauricio Lorenzetti, and a range of financial inclusion stakeholders from the Netherlands. Ruiz told the audience:
“When you’re a bank and dealing with multiple fintechs, you don’t want to deal with one in Brazil and another one in London… we want this to be like apps in a store… they just deal with our technology, and they don’t really mind where the fintech sits, what currency is used.. we try to take the friction out.”
Applications are now open for fintech companies to join the platform and participate in the nine-month program. The program works as follows:
- Outreach: banks, mobile money providers and fintechs are invited to join
- Fintech Opportunity Scan: participating banks and mobile money providers define their problems and needs
- Matching: pairing of fintechs based on problem definition
- Acceleration & Integration: testing of fintech solutions in a sandbox and integrating the technology into the bank’s operations
- Showcase: demonstrate success during showcase days
In the first week of March, FMO and above & beyond will host a demonstration day in The Hague.
FMO is the Dutch development bank. As a leading impact investor, FMO supports sustainable private sector growth in developing countries and emerging markets by investing in ambitious projects and entrepreneurs. FMO believes that a strong private sector leads to economic and social development, and has a more than 45-year proven track record of empowering people to employ their skills and improve their quality of life. FMO focuses on three sectors that have high development impact: financial institutions, energy, and agribusiness, food & water. With a committed portfolio of EUR 9.0 billion spanning over 92 countries, FMO is one of the larger bilateral private sector developments banks globally. For more information, please visit www.fmo.nl.