The Financial Technology Service Providers Association of Uganda (FITSPA) in partnership with Financial Sector Deepening Uganda (FSDU) will host the 2019 Africa FinTech Festival in Kampala next month.
The two-day forum (November 5 to 6) will bring together policy makers, regulators, Fintechs and investors from over 26 Africa countries to explore the role fintechs play in Africa’s Digital Economy.
The Festival will be a climax to the 2019 Financial Inclusion Week activities that highlighted the collective efforts needed to build inclusive financial markets.
The FITSPA Chairman, Peter Kawumi, explained “Fintechs have transformed financial services globally. These nimble, fast-moving companies are starting to address challenges specific to the African context including the distance, relevance and high cost structure of accessing financial services. Fintechs have the potential to unlock the economic potential of Africa.”
Dr. Segun Aina, President of the Africa Fintech Network recognized the importance the Festival plays in providing member countries with a platform to showcase the innovation and creativity that exists in their local ecosystems.
“The Africa Fintech Network is delighted to have one of its members, FITSPA, host the second edition of its flagship event, the Africa Fintech Festival. The goal of the Festival is to create a platform for networking, engagement, learning and knowledge sharing for fintech stakeholders in Africa and across the globe.”
Uganda’s 2018 Finscope survey reported that financial inclusion increased from 57% in 2006 to 78% in 2018 which resulted in exclusion dropping from 43% to over the same period.
This improvement was attributed to the increased use of mobile money and the proliferation of FinTechs, which act as aggregators, enablers and distribution partners for the traditional financial services providers.
Over and above access to payment solutions, FinTechs that also achieve scalable solutions around savings, credit, insurance and investments provide people and businesses with the opportunity to realize their ambitions for upward economic mobility.
Rashmi Pillai, FSDU Executive Director said, “Hosting this event, is a big win for the Fintech community in Uganda and FSDU. FSDU believes in the power of Fintechs. We are active supporters of the Fintech ecosystem in Uganda and in part were responsible for the establishment of FITSPA”.
Fintechs not only bring formal financial services closer to people and businesses but also deepen customer value proposition and customer service”.
Discussing the upcoming conference, Pillai stated that “The discussions over the two-day Africa Fintech Festival will identify knowledge and implementation gaps between regulation and innovation, open up conversations about opportunities to strengthen the existing market infrastructure and showcase the viability of domestic Fintechs to potential investors.”
The African Fintech Network (AFN) wants to fast-track development and coordination of fintech innovations across the continent by working through National Associations such as FITSPA. FITSPA, which started two years ago, now has 70 members and continues to onboard Fintechs in its network. Uganda, through FITSPA is a founding member of the Africa Fintech Network.
Zianah Muddu, General Secretary of the Africa Fintech Network and Engagement partner for FITSPA said “Fintechs are solution providers in various aspects of finance with the aim of improving greatly on the speed and traditional ways of financial services delivery.”
Muddu also stressed that the fintech ecosphere is attractive to young Africans who make up the bulk of national populations on the continent. They are not only involved in innovation but are also avid users of these new applications.
A major step towards achieving financial inclusion is to substantially improve financial literacy throughout the continent which will enhance the understanding and usage of financial technologies by consumers.
Financial technology or fintech provide innovative services that can provide additional services to traditional institutions like banks and allow them to expand their delivery.