Ivory Coast, precursor in mobile banking field.

Published: 19 May 2017

Amaris recently opened its first office in Ivory Coast of which Federico Corsi, Regional Country manager is in charge. He observed the potential demonstrated by the country’s telecommunications market and more particularly, its mobile banking field.

«  The African continent missed the two previous industrial revolutions, it is not going to miss the current one that we are all experiencing today : The digital revolution. Digital invaded Africa and it is through “reverse innovation” that the continent is positioning itself as a future economic leader.

Whilst the majority of payments are still going through banks in Europe, Africa innovates with mobile banking.  This payment method allows them to bypass issues related to absence of payment terminals, geographical remoteness and costs of access to banking services.

Mobile banking has created a wave of innovation which is conducive to many start-ups being able to offer new services to the population, such as the instantaneous money transfer. Africa is 1.2 billion people country with 640 million mobile users and over 146 million mobile money accounts.

More specifically, my position allows me to notice the turning point marked by Ivory Coast. It is one of the leading countries of digital transformation. In 2009, only 45% of Ivorian households owned a mobile*. Less than 10 years after, the mobile telephony penetration rate has reached 113.32%* in the country.

The quick development of the telecommunications sector was made possible thanks to the market liberalization, adopted in 1995 by the State. Today, it allows 3 operators (Orange, MTN and Moov) to share the market. Those private companies have also built necessary infrastructure and equipment, even if this field needs more development.

Regarding mobile banking, almost 7.5 million*, or 33% of Ivorians, subscribed to those services. In comparison, in France, only 6% of the population were using mobile payments in 2016*. The market is extremely promising. It seems inevitable that most of the banking operations on the Ivory Coast  territory will soon be mobile payments.

In the region, we are observing a profound change in the banking and telecommunication sectors. One more proof that smartphones are more than simple communication devices. »

* Sources from The Gallup Organization, ARTCI, and Deloitte Global mobile Consumer Survey.

About Amaris in Ivory Coast

Damien is the operational director of the Ivorian office, the third office Amaris has opened on the African continent, after Mauritius and Morroco.
In January, Amaris announced the opening of an office in South Africa. He initiate the creation of this office.

"Ivory Coast is a a country of networks and opportunities" explains Damien.

"We will continue to develop the IT market and the Telecommunication market obviously. They are challenging and exciting markets."

Some figures:

The Ivorian office is already employing 10 people
It has been created in October 2016
The goal is to double the workforce by the end of 2017

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