Emerging Technologies Law is a blog by William Ting which examines 21st century legal, business & Social tech issues.

Gates Foundation Disrupts Fintech: Rise of "Mojaloop"

Gates Foundation Disrupts Fintech: Rise of "Mojaloop"

 Gates Foundation's "Mojaloop" to expand financial inclusion (Getty Images license)

Gates Foundation's "Mojaloop" to expand financial inclusion (Getty Images license)

The world of fintech can be roughly divided into two general camps: those full of "hot air" motivated more by talk and words geared towards the proverbial "quick buck" and those who are genuinely acting to change our world for the better. The Gates Foundation falls squarely within the latter!

In a gesture of philanthropy rarely seen in the fintech world, the Gates Foundation has just announced an open-source software to create interoperable payments platforms that connect all digital financial providers and customers. It is hoped that this new platform will expand financial inclusion (a term much discussed in fintech circles without much action) to those whom Mr. Gates call the "unbanked" and help them gain access to financial services hitherto unavailable. The platform is dubbed "Mojaloop" inspired from the Swahili word for “one”. 

According to the Foundation, this is how Mojaloop works: "a Ugandan woman named Grace has a mobile money account—but her employer and her daughter’s school have accounts with different financial providers. A platform powered by Mojaloop can tie them all together, so Grace can receive her paycheck and pay her daughter’s school fees, instantly and securely."

Mojaloop's new platform will help banks, financial services firms and mobile payment solutions providers to use Mojaloop's open-source software to build interoperable connections amongst each other's products and services. This would obviate each individual firm to spend time and resources in developing "custom-made connections to one another".

In this way, by looping the world's banking and financial actors together, the Foundation seeks to have digital money move without barriers throughout the global economy.

This is a fantastic idea which is backed by some of the greatest minds in software engineering. After all, Mr. Gates is the founder of Microsoft and I am sure they are working together on this grand project for our digital future.

 Gates Foundation combines technological innovation and financial inclusion  (Getty Images license)

Gates Foundation combines technological innovation and financial inclusion  (Getty Images license)

Will monitor the progress of Mojaloop and its adoption. Stay tuned!

#mojaloop #GatesFoundation #financialinclusion #fintech

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