What do mobile payments mean for those who CHOOSE not to participate in financial services sector?

A recent World Bank report has been published around the underserved and looking at various aspects of those excluded from the financial service sector involuntarily vs. those who voluntarily opt out.

The big question at hand for those unbanked and underbanked in the developed world is:  How many CHOOSE to opt out vs. how many are excluded voluntarily?  And of those who choose to opt out, what is the likelihood they will adopt some form of mobile banking/payments that may offer a new value proposition to existing banking offerings.  The critical question to consider is:  do these people have a pain point that mobile payments/banking can address?  And who are THESE people?  At the core of this is to look at the population as sub-segments, not as a whole.  The migrant worker who remits money back to Mexico has a fundamentally different set of needs than the cash-constrained single mother, although both may be categorized as “unbanked” or “under-banked.”

This is a fascinating puzzle to solve and one that I am currently working on with my clients.  Thoughts?

-Menekse

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