• ETC Representative: Hannes Leskelä and Monique Baars
  • Data enthusiast: John Bagiliko
  • Data science expert: Renato Rossi
  • Problem statement

    Financial inclusion is failing in Africa. 72% of adults are still unbanked, while financial service providers are struggling with high churn, account dormancy, default, and declining savings rates. A large gap exists between the ~$130 billion financial services opportunity in Africa, and the reality where 67% of adults are financially illiterate and making poor financial decisions. Access to financial products without true understanding of financial concepts is not fair to individuals or sustainable for institutions. Finance is hardly taught in schools, available information is overly complex, and existing education tools are either manual, expensive, and not measurable; or have prohibitive user requirements. Fineazy is solving the problem of financial illiteracy across Africa with an education chatbot. But Fineazy only succeeds in this mission if users actually improve their understanding, and progress through the learning journey by mastering financial concepts along the way. In reality, it is challenging to build trust, keep users’ interest and attention, and incentivise users to engage with the content, understand the concepts, keep coming back to learn, and progress all the way to the end. This is the problem we selected for the DataHack4FI competition.

    Solution description

    Fineazy is building financial capability and trust using tailor-made content, local storytelling, personalised learning journeys and an AI-powered chatbot. It is a simple yet powerful solution that is relevant and accessible to the African context and fits seamlessly into daily communication on SMS, Messenger or WhatsApp. To improve the effectiveness of Fineazy’s product, we developed a dashboard during the DataHack4FI competition using the rich data we capture from each user’s interactions, combined with a smart analytics engine, that will allow us to optimise each user’s learning journey so that we maximise their engagement, understanding, progress, and confidence. Specifically, we can use the data analytics dashboard to: (1) identify where content can be improved; (2) personalise the experience to each individual, including times of day to message; (3) develop insights into user behaviour and sentiment; (4) report each user’s progress to Fineazy’s customers; and (5) measure and share impact reports with partners. Financial education is an important part of the financial inclusion ecosystem as it unlocks the value in the financial system and promotes activity and sustainability. Fineazy’s primary customers are Financial Service Providers who have a financial and regulatory incentive to educate their consumers. As such, the education is free for individuals and is therefore truly inclusive.

    Market segment

    All Fineazy’s users will benefit from more personalised content and a more personalised learning experience, but especially the time-poor millennials as they would need less time to complete their training. In the same way, while all Fineazy’s B2B customers will benefit from the solution, the institutions who value impact and measurable results will benefit the most as they will be able to see the impact metrics in real time.