HiPipo Uganda has today Monday launched the third season of the 40 Days 40 FinTechs with a call to digital innovators and financial technology companies (fintechs) across East Africa to take part. Season three is expected cover physical destinations in Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Burundi and Rwanda.
First launched in 2020, the 40 Days 40 FinTechs initiative is a 40-day event that profiles emerging fintechs with unique stories. This platform aptly provides a setting for the various players and stakeholders involved in digital and financial technology to exhibit their products and services and also share their ideas on how more people, especially those unserved and underserved by the present financial systems with an emphasis on interoperability.
Run under HiPipo’s Include Everyone program – that also encompasses other initiatives such as FinTech Landscape Exhibition, Women in FinTech Hackathon, Summit & Incubator and the Digital and Financial Inclusion Summit and Digital Impact Awards Africa – 40 Days 40 FinTechs delivers over two months of the exhibition, dialogue and discussions.
It also offers fintechs useful tools and an introduction to industry’s emerging technologies, such as Mojaloop open source software, and guidance from Level One Project foundational material. The skills gained from this initiative cover Level One Project principles, instant and inclusive payment systems (IIPS), inclusive finance and fintech in general.
According to HiPipo CEO Innocent Kawooya, the second HiPipo 40 Days 40 FinTechs that ran in the months of July and August 2021 set the bar very high and has prompted them to go beyond Ugandan borders.
“As HiPipo, our extensive effort and advocacy is partly for the intention of championing digital innovation and interoperable instant and inclusive payment systems (IIPS) in Africa to a point where our innovators enjoy and achieve sound profit margins to help them keep designing and deploying affordable and inclusive financial services for the poor. It was thus pleasant for us to learn that up to 25 of our season-two participants not only continued to enjoy increased client engagement and better bottom lines as a direct result of participating in the 40 Days 40 FinTechs initiative, but are also helping to generate economy-wide efficiencies by digitally connecting millions of low-income consumers that are learning to transact at a fast rate,” Kawooya noted.
“But this is just the start, and we acknowledge there is a lot more to do. Season three of 40 Days 40 Fintechs is here, starting mid-2022 with optimism that the initiative will impact even more lives and livelihoods going forward.”
Previous participants have gone on to innovate for sectors beyond just the traditional financial services but are making forays into healthcare, education, lending, remittances, agriculture, robo-advisor, payments, regtech, insurtech, crowdfunding, neo-banking, cryptography, cryptocurrency, inter ledger, blockchain, cross-border payments, retirement schemes and new ways of operating bonds and real estate, among others.
In their day-to-day operations, they are changing the lives of the likes of rural farmers, women, merchants, small business holders (formal and informal), and unemployed youth, in a way creating forays for digital youth champions, women and other special interest groups (SIGs).
For the fintechs, the cost-free exposure aided by the generosity of the Level One Project; an initiative of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s Financial Services for the Poor (FSP) program, is still of immeasurable value.
“It will be exciting to see what the participants have to offer. And again, various stakeholders will be on hand for more discussion and debate, with this time around extra insight from the likes of banks and MNOs. We anticipate extensive discussion on Instant and inclusive payment systems, Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDC), advancing convenience for users, cross-border payments and on micro-lending products (especially those offering facilities to persons and communities that are still on the bylines of finance and trade for example; women, PWDs and other SIGs,” Kawooya.
40 Days 40 FinTechs Initiative is implemented by HiPipo in partnership with Crosslake Technologies, ModusBox, and Mojaloop Foundation, and generously sponsored by the Gates Foundation.
Registration is on a first-come, first-serve basis, and qualifying for the fintech stakeholders operating in Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, and other parts of the continent are encouraged to book their slots before June 11, 2022 by visiting www.HiPipo.org