Leading investors and the GSMA: Promoting responsible business practices in digital financial services

July 13, 2018 | Mobile Money | Global | Claire Scharwatt

In June 2018, over 50 fintech investors and digital finance innovators launched the Guidelines for Investing in Responsible Digital Financial Services during an event hosted by Goodwell in Amsterdam, which was attended by over 100 investors from around the world.

The Investor Guidelines have already been endorsed by over 50 Co-Founding Signatories including the International Finance Corporation, Accion, CDC, Goodwell, and LUN Partners Group. Signatories of the Guidelines commit to:

  • Transforming the G20 High Level Principles for Digital Financial Inclusion into actionable steps that are aligned with investors’ due diligence and business strategies in a given digital finance market or sector;
  • Catalysing investments in responsible digital financial inclusion models for resilient growth, and creating markets and opportunities for the underserved; and
  • Accelerating private-public innovation through dynamic learning from digital finance investments, sharing lessons learned in order to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 and beyond.

 

The GSMA welcomes this initiative, which is very much aligned with the recently launched GSMA Mobile Money Certification, which also promotes responsible business practices in the digital finance sector. The Investor Guidelines and GSMA Mobile Money Certification both cover a number of key topics such as price transparency and data security.

The Guidelines are intended to help investors conduct due diligence of potential new investees by emphasising the importance of strong risk management and consumer protection practices. The Guidelines include potential actions for investors; one, for example, is to promote relevant global standards and industry initiatives, such as GSMA Mobile Money Certification.

The GSMA Mobile Money Certification was designed to provide practical guidance to mobile money providers on how to achieve excellence in risk management and consumer protection. This is achieved through 300 detailed criteria, setting a high bar to which all providers can aspire.

Responsible business practices will be crucial to accelerating the adoption of digital financial services over the next few years. We look forward to continuing to work closely with, among others, the IFC and the World Bank Group to jointly achieve Universal Financial Access.

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