CAMBRIDGE, Mass., June 10, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Brussels-based WSBI (World Savings and Retail Banking Institute) and Cignifi, the leading mobile data analytics and scoring company, today announced the results of a project demonstrating clear correlations between mobile phone habits and banking behavior.
The results of the project are summarized in a White Paper entitled Mobile Phone Data as the Key to Promoting Financial Inclusion, available on the WSBI and Cignifi web sites.
Over the course of a five month study, WSBI and Cignifi analyzed the savings and mobile phone usage habits of individual consumers in Ghana — a country where nearly one hundred percent of the adult population uses mobile phones, but only sixteen percent of those over fifteen years old save money at a financial institution. WSBI partnered with its member in Ghana, HFC bank, a retail bank and the country's leading mortgage provider, and telecommunications company Airtel Ghana, a subsidiary of Bharti Airtel Limited, to gather data for the analysis.
"Our modelling of a large number of mobile phone usage attributes showed clear correlations between mobile phone habits and savings behaviour," said Jonathan Hakim, CEO of Cignifi. "This points to the potential value of mobile behaviour as a way to identify potential users of savings products," added Hakim.
Analysis of transaction history and savings behavior of 180,000 HFC customers over a five-month period revealed distinct customer segments. Customers in two of these segments appeared to be prime targets for increased financial inclusion, with relatively high level of engagement (demonstrating the importance of financial services in their lives) but low average savings balance. These HFC customer types were then matched with mobile phone usage data to identify the specific mobile behavior that characterized the target customers.
"WSBI and its member banks see tremendous potential for understanding, reaching, and serving an untapped low-income customer base through mobile phones," said Chris De Noose, Managing Director of WSBI. "Innovative use of data opens up an opportunity for financial institutions to use the mobile channel to market low-cost savings products that provide value to a customer group many believed was unreachable," added de Noose.
WSBI brings together savings and retail banks from 90 countries, representing the interests of approximately 7,000 banks in all continents. As a global organization, WSBI focuses on issues of global importance affecting the banking industry. It supports the aims of the G20 in achieving sustainable, inclusive, and balanced growth and job creation around the world, whether in the industrialized or less developed countries. WSBI favors an inclusive form of globalization that is just and fair, supporting international efforts to advance financial access and financial usage for everyone. It supports a diversified range of financial services that responsibly meet customers' transaction, saving, and borrowing needs.
Cignifi (www.cignifi.com) is revolutionizing the way financial service companies meet the needs of an estimated 2.7 billion people worldwide who have mobile phones but no access to formal financial services. The company has developed the first proven analytic platform to deliver credit and marketing scores for consumers using mobile phone behavior data. The Cignifi platform enables banks, insurers and retailers to qualify and contact millions of underserved consumers who lack traditional credit histories, unlocking a massive opportunity to serve these customers. Cignifi, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is led by a management team with significant data analytics, financial services and global business experience. For more information, visit www.cignifi.com
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