Ugandans may before long be able to access electricity on credit if Mallan Company Limited, a local Financial Technology company (FinTech) successfully launches its Yassako product soon.
The micro credit product that will enable people to top up their utility bills is being developed in partnership with Airtel, which will give them access to data for credit scoring of customers and also access to a mechanism for collections.
This was revealed by Malcolm Kastiro, the founder and chief executive officer, Mallan Company Limited during the second day of the 40-days-40-FinTechs initiative that is organized by HiPipo under its Include EveryOne programme, in partnership with Crosslake Tech, ModusBox and Mojaloop.
The initiative seeks to enable FinTechs to innovate solutions that facilitate cross-network financial transactions at minimal risks to enhance access to financial services.
Running for 40 days, the project will see the participating 40 FinTechs acquire interoperable development skills to improve access to financial services, using the Mojaloop open source software.
Kastiro also noted that the Information and Communications Technology solutions company that specializes in value added services and advanced credit services in the mobile payments space, is also working on a payment gateway using the Mojaloop software that will innovate as many services as possible, with various options and features that users enjoy.
Additionally, he said that the FinTech is considering creating an ecosystem that enables its clients to invest their money using the platform, make payments or send money outside the country, on top of the current sending money from one mobile money account to another or from a mobile money account to a bank and vice versa.
Mallan Company Limited was co-founded by Kastiro together with his young brother Allan. Both were pursuing their childhood dream of taking over the world.
It specialises in added value and advanced credit services with emphasis in the mobile payment space.
It offers a range of products including bulk payments, mainly for Small and Mid-sized Enterprises (SMEs) that desire to pay their employees, staff or casual labourers but who do not have the ‘Know Your Customer’ requirements to open bank Accounts. They help them do bulky payments through mobile money.
Kastiro applauded HiPipo for the initiative, saying it has given them publicity by showcasing their products.
Additionally, he said that HiPipo’s collaboration and partnership with Mojaloop is helping them further understand and appreciate the role of payments in financial inclusion.
“HiPipo is giving us that platform that we need to get the products out there; they are giving us the platform that we need to acquire customers, and to get the necessary stakeholders on board in terms of regulation and partnerships,” Kastiro said.
The HiPipo CEO, Innocent Kawooya applauded Mallan for the innovative brains, saying that it has an amazing story and many forward thinking people.
“One of the things that I would credit Mallan team for is that they have got an amazing and very organised team that is ready to go to the market and make a difference,” Kawooya said.
He added: “As we speak about transforming millions of lives using financial technology, one of the most important aspects of transformation is understanding and appreciating the benefits technology can do for our people and our lives.”
He also commended Mallan for building amazing interoperable solutions that will serve people at the bottom of the pyramid.
“Mallan has products that work with Saccos, which are amazing; it is trying to break the traditional ways of saving money in boxes and locking it with a padlock. That is very important for us to have as a service and as a thought for an organisation like them that is in financial technology,” he noted.
He added that Mallan is already embracing the use of Mojaloop, an amazing standard that is globally accepted and which works with the Global System for Mobile Communications Association Application Program Interface specifications.
“We are sure when they are developing a solution off Mojaloop, it will be interoperable, convenient, reliable and very secure because the OSS comes with all these principles already catered for,” Kawooya explained.
As an ecosystem advocate, Kawooya pledged that HiPipo will support all the FinTechs that they are engaging by ensuring that they advocate for simpler guidelines with the regulators and partners such as Mobile Money Operators and banks to enable them integrate much easier. He also pledged to help them on publicity so as to enable the public know the kind of products they offer.
Going forward, Mallan intends to play a great role in driving financial inclusion in Uganda, right from access to the right financial products to financial literacy and how people can interact with the different technologies available to appreciate systems and the processes.
Financial inclusion in Uganda is estimated at 78%, with formal financial inclusion estimated at 58%, according to the 2018 FinScope survey.