Can Big Data Shape Financial Services in East Africa?
This Focus Note by Marissa Dean and the supported by the Mastercard Foundation summarizes how 30 leading organizations across Kenya and Tanzania are thinking about or actively using big data and analytics as they explore this space in digital finance. The findings are based on interviews with these organizations—which include banks, microfinance institutions (MFIs), mobile network operators (MNOs), and FinTech organizations (listed in Appendix: Research Approach)—conducted between August and September 2017.
The interviews reveal that while players in East Africa do not exchange and profit from big data directly, there is a growing demand for traditional and big datasets. This has led to a slow and steady uptake of big data and analytics. The findings further indicate there are four key factors driving the use of big data analytics, discussed in detail in the next section. The findings thus specifically focus on the drivers affecting the use of big data and analytics as well as the potential for big data and analytics to enable organizations to better reach low-income and difficult to reach customers.