Experts foresee brighter future for fintech with advanced technologies


…urges breaking silos, capacity building and intentionality

By Juliet ETEFE

As the fintech landscape in Africa continues to evolve, industry experts foresee a brighter future fueled by advanced technologies and collaborative efforts.

Mr. Dario Bianchi, Chief Digital Officer of MTN Ghana, emphasised the importance of breaking silos and fostering dialogue across stakeholders to propel Africa’s fintech industry forward.

He stressed that a collaborative approach between the private sector—including telecommunications and fintech companies— regulators, and government entities, is essential to creating regulations conducive to fintech growth and extending its benefits to a broader demographic.

“The future will be bright if we collaborate and if we come together to create regulations that can help the fintech and can also help more people benefiting from a modern connected life,” he noted in an interview with the B&FT on the side of the 3i Africa Summit held in Accra.

According to him, the integration of AI technologies also stands to significantly enhance the accessibility and security of digital services, adding that it’s potential extends to language support, fraud detection, and other critical areas, ultimately facilitating greater inclusion in the digital and fintech spheres.

While acknowledging USSD’s (Unstructured Supplementary Service Data) historical significance in driving mobile money adoption across Africa, Mr. Bianchi underscored the imperative of embracing digital platforms to unlock new functionalities and enhance user experiences, such as QR code payments.

He also expressed his vision for seamless digital transactions, noting his aspiration for swift QR code payments, illustrating the transformative potential of digital innovation.

Open banking

Mr. Bianchi further advocated the concept of open banking, citing its potential to revolutionise the fintech landscape by providing customers with consolidated access to financial data across multiple accounts.

While open banking has gained traction in regions like Europe, its adoption in Africa hinges on regulatory frameworks and industry readiness.

He, however, expressed confidence in the imminent realisation of open banking within the next two years, underscoring the importance of industry-wide collaboration in driving progress.

Charting the course for next decade


In addition to his insights, Sylvia Otuo-Acheampong, Head of Products and Innovations of Mobile Money Limited (MTN Ghana) said it is important to deploy advanced technologies such as blockchain and AI to propel the growth of the fintech ecosystem.

Speaking to the B&FT on ‘Africa’s fintech revolution: charting the course for the next decade, she also noted blockchain technology’s capacity to process millions of transactions efficiently, enabling scalability within shorter timeframes.

Also, AI’s role in transforming raw data into actionable insights, enabling predictive analytics and personalised customer experiences adding how by leveraging AI-driven tools fintech companies can analyse consumer behavior patterns and offer tailored solutions, thereby enhancing customer engagement and satisfaction.

She added the pivotal role of cloud technology in scaling storage capabilities to accommodate the increasing volume of transactions.

She emphasised the need for a seamless digital experience for customers, highlighting the importance of simplifying transaction processes through digital platforms while ensuring robust data security measures.

Ms. Otuo-Acheampong said it is important for regulatory frameworks to guide the responsible adoption of emerging technologies.

Digital micro-pensions services

For her part, Chief Enterprise Business Officer, Angela Osei Poku speaking on ‘Digital micro-pensions services for an equitable and inclusive world’ highlighted the inherent trust and accessibility of mobile technology, emphasising its role in fostering financial inclusion and providing individuals with peace of mind regarding their savings and financial security.

She indicated the cultural and societal influences on financial behaviors and how mobile technology’s role is providing security and empowerment.

Noting the diverse needs of the informal sector, she stressed the importance of tailoring solutions and leveraging telcos’ existing customer relationships to expand the reach of micro-pension services.

Ms. Osei Poku emphasised personalised approaches to ensure inclusivity and advocated for telcos’ role in driving financial empowerment, especially for women and youth, through innovative digital micro-pension services.

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