Despite statistics; over the past five years, 700 million adults became account holders; at the same time, those without an account (the unbanked) dropped to 2 billion (down 20%). The increase in account ownership is all due to a growth in innovations in technology; particularly digital and mobile platforms (mobile money/ cryptocurrency) designed to expand access.
Likewise, Northeast Capital Fund II, LLC has emerged into the spotlight to present our unique ecosystem designed to disrupt the system in order to create financial inclusion.
Defined as having access and usage of a broad range of financial services and products in a manner convenient to the financially excluded, unbanked and under-banked. Financial inclusion’s main goal is to improve the range, quality and availability of financial services and products to the unserved, under-served and financially excluded.
At its most basic level, financial inclusion starts with having a bank account; although it’s not an end in itself, financial inclusion is a means to an end that provides substantial benefits. NCF II recognizes the critical role financial inclusion plays in reducing poverty and achieving inclusive economic growth, growing evidence from studies show that when people participate in the financial system, they are better equipped to;
• Start and/or expand businesses. • Able to invest in education. • Manage risk. • Absorb financial shocks.
Having access to bank accounts and payment mechanisms increases savings, empowers women, and boosts productive investment and consumption. Access to credit also has positive effects on consumption; as well as, employment, income and some aspects of mental health and one’s outlook on life.
Benefits go beyond individuals; greater access to financial services for both individuals and firms helps reduce income inequality and accelerate economic growth.
A fast-growing body of knowledge, experience and evidence has sparked policy makers and regulators to make financial inclusion a priority in financial sector development. Bank regulators in 143 jurisdictions; 67% have a mandate to promote financial inclusion; more importantly, International organizations, including the G-20 and the World Bank, are beginning to formulate strategies to promote financial inclusion.
Sources: Banking Association of South Africa. 2018. Working Definition for Financial Inclusion. Demirguc-Kunt, A., Klapper, L., Singer, D. and Van Oudheusden, P. 2015. The Global Findex Database 2014 Measuring Financial Inclusion around the World. World Bank Group – Melinda and Bill Gates Foundation.