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New on our Knowledge Center: Breaking the Pattern: Getting Digital Financial Services Entrepreneurs to Scale in East Africa and India

Published on June 29, 2017

cover_vc_report.JPGBreaking the Pattern: Getting Digital Financial Services Entrepreneurs to Scale in East Africa and India. More than  60 million people in East Africa still do not have accounts at formal financial institutions, and around half of small businesses lack access to formal credit. We know the enormous potential of digital financial services - Kenya’s mobile-money platform, M-Pesa, has already begun to help millions connect with the formal economy. And payments are just the tip of the iceberg. Companies across India and East Africa are developing innovative solutions to meet the needs of the financially excluded. Yet despite the enormous market opportunity and the number of high-potential DFS companies in these markets, very few are scaling. Why? The obvious answer most startups will give is capital. Companies aren’t raising the money they need to get to scale: 72% of startup funding in East Africa has gone to just three companies in the past two years, and the other companies have struggled to fulfill a full round.