Bboxx launches financial inclusion initiatives to accelerate inclusive economic development in Africa

Bboxx launches financial inclusion initiatives to accelerate inclusive economic development in Africa
  • Bboxx sees positive results from cash loan pilot in Kenya, providing affordable, quick, and easy access to financial services
  • Necessary step to help bridge the gap with millions of people unfairly excluded from mainstream finance
  • Another step towards Bboxx building a digital marketplace for all underserved customers and following MoU signed to sell smartphones in Togo
  • Scaling partnerships needed to roll out initiatives further in 2022

Wednesday 15th December 2021 – Bboxx, a next-generation utility, is ramping up the promotion of greater financial inclusion in Africa through a series of new initiatives. Among these is a cash loan and affordable financial services pilot aimed at positively transforming lives in Kenya.

The pilot has secured access to finance for customers who would otherwise struggle to obtain it elsewhere. These cash loans will help to significantly support people, from improving financial capacities to invest in businesses like farming to paying school fees, medical emergencies, among other uses. Bboxx acts as the platform between the customer and the lender, using its platform Bboxx Pulse® and its credit scoring algorithm capabilities to identify customers that may require a loan. Bboxx has partnered with a Kenyan Fintech company, a financial services provider to conduct this pilot. Since the launch of the pilot, Bboxx has recorded a repayment rate of 80% and a low NPL (Non-Performing Loans) at 2%. This is a positive indication of what can be expected when scale happens.

The opportunity to transform lives for the better through providing access to financial services is huge, with over half of the population in Sub-Saharan Africa not currently banking or borrowing from a regulated financial institution*. Bboxx’s customers are often building digital credit histories for the first time through paying for their solar energy Pay-As-You-Go via mobile money. Despite being excluded from mainstream financial services, Bboxx’s data backs up that these customers are highly reliable. Bboxx is looking to roll pilots out further in 2022 in Kenya and other markets, working with financial institutions, fintechs and traditional banks.

Bboxx CEO and Co-Founder, Mansoor Hamayun said: “We believe that technology is the key to unlocking inclusive and sustainable development in Africa. The launch of our latest cash loans pilot in Kenya is part of our wider strategy to continually innovate and to promote financial inclusion throughout Sub-Saharan Africa. There is a significant untapped market opportunity here to enable people who have been previously unfairly cut off from finance to reach their full potential.

“Through leveraging our scalable technology platform and decentralised distribution network, we have a growing pipeline of opportunities where we can significantly help customers across a variety of sectors and services. We look forward to keeping up momentum as we accelerate our pilot launches throughout 2022 and beyond, working with a range of partners to put this vision into action.”

The launch closely follows Bboxx’s recent signing of the first ever Memorandum of Understanding (‘MoU’) to sell smartphones in Togo, in partnership with the Togolese Government. The MoU will improve digital inclusion and the delivery of digital public services, with the smartphones made available to the public via more affordable financing options.

Both initiatives form part of Bboxx’s broader vision to build a digital marketplace for all underserved customers across a range of essential sectors and services. Bboxx’s roots lie firmly in clean energy driven by its purpose to tackle energy poverty. The business is investing in IoT technology solutions and using its innovative proprietary Bboxx Pulse® platform to scale clean energy access in Africa. Pulse® software is now evolving further in response to customer demand for wider products and services, including pay-as-you-go LPG clean cooking systems, solar-powered water pumps and irrigation systems for farming, through to TV content, internet and smartphones, all of which can be delivered once people have access to clean energy and built up a track-record of online bill payments.

Access to energy brings people into the digital economy and fosters greater financial inclusion. Bboxx impact analysis has found that thousands of people have undertook more economic activities as a result of using Bboxx’s energy products and services, generating entrepreneurship and $30m of income within hard-to-reach communities who have previously been overlooked.

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* https://ufa.worldbank.org/en/global-progress#ssa

About Bboxx

Bboxx is a next generation utility, transforming lives and unlocking potential through access to energy. Bboxx manufactures, distributes and finances decentralised solar powered systems in developing countries. It is scaling through forging strategic partnerships and its innovative technology Bboxx Pulse®, a comprehensive management platform using IoT technology. Through affordable, reliable, and clean utility provision, Bboxx is bringing people into the digital economy, creating new markets, and enabling economic development in off-grid communities and those living without a reliable grid connection. The company is positively impacting the lives of nearly 2 million people with its products and services in over 27 markets, directly contributing to 11 of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

So far, Bboxx has deployed more than 500,000 solar home systems. Bboxx has over 1000 staff across nine offices including in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Rwanda, and Togo, with its head office in the UK and its manufacturing operations in China. In 2019, Bboxx was the winner of the Zayed Sustainability Prize in the Energy category – testament to the way the company is making a meaningful difference to people’s lives around the world. You can find further information about Bboxx on its website at – https://www.bboxx.com/

For more information please contact:

Instinctif Partners

Email: bboxx@instinctif.com

Phone: +44 (0) 7457 2020