To understand why this is the case and to determine if there are ways in which low income Mexicans can be attracted to formal savings and other financial products, CGAP partnered with design firm IDEO.org and one of the largest banks in Mexico Bancomer over the last three months. The purpose was to incubate possible financial products that are financially sustainable for Bancomer but could reach scale and attract the low income Mexican market.
Mexico has 27 million households. Twenty-two million of them are middle and low income. Even though banks reach them physically, almost none of these people choose to use bank accounts to manage their money. Watch this eight-minute video in which Xavier faz talks with five low income Mexicans about their day-to-day money management strategies.
This post includes a detailed presentation of CGAP’s analysis of 23 firms from banking, microfinance, mobile, fast moving consumer goods, and Silicon Valley. It also describes the key features of three Product Labs which will be established by CGAP’s bank, telco and other partners.
CGAP counted 22 branchless banking services with more than 1 million registered users; we also counted more than 70 others which have not reached that threshold (as of Q1 2011). That’s about a 1 in 4 “hit rate”.