Physical Banks are History: Pakistan m-Banking

♠ Posted by Emmanuel at 8/18/2014 01:30:00 AM
It may sound strange to people from rich countries, but most people in the developing world have never set foot in a bank branch. Not only are they often confined to urban centers, but they are also geared towards meeting the needs of wealthier clients. To correct both of these failings in banking the so-called "unbanked" or folks without access to financial services, m-banking has become popular in many parts of the developing world. That is, mobile services become instruments for delivering financial services.

Today's example is particularly instructive: Pakistan is a perennially hard-up country riven by never-ending political strife. While numerous factions and politicians go at it without end, in no small part causing great harm, mobile solutions continue to proliferate:
Warid Telecom and Bank Alfalah Limited announced the launch of their marketing campaign for Branchless Banking Services under the brand name Mobile Paisa in Pakistan with Monet (Pvt) Limited as the technology provider. The launch aims to bridge the gap between banking services and consumers as it provides advanced mobile financial services, convenience, reliability and security for customers.

The services include money transfer, bill payments and customer mobile wallets. Services for consumers, corporates and G2P will be launched soon. Speaking on Mobile Paisa hitting over 10,000 agents for branchless banking, Warid Telecom Chief Executive Officer Muneer Farooqui said the facility is aimed at making mobile financial services effortless. “In this era of modernisation and technical development, it is essential to digitise and enhance transacting convenience through a secure and swift system,” said Farooqui. 
They say that necessity is the mother of invention. It is unsurprising that many innovative m-banking services come from the developing world in terms of handling e-payments and extending the range of mobile services. It is conceivable that most developing countries will skip the stage of having bank branches on every major street corner and move directly into m-banking. After all, you don't need checkbooks, ATMs and tellers when your cell phone meets most of your banking needs.