Technology Program Country Note: Ghana

Examining the potential of branchless banking in Ghana

This note discusses possibilities for the growth of branchless banking in Ghana. It analyzes topics that include customer demand for financial services, government actors, regulatory environment, financial institutions, and mobile money deployments by mobile network providers.The note states that Ghana has a promising market for branchless banking that has not grown as expected. Findings include:

  • Government of Ghana has introduced its own branchless banking service called eZwich and is trying to mandate banks to issue cards and deploy eZwich-compliant point-of-sale devices and automatic teller machines;
  • Governments guidelines for branchless banking have resulted in multiple partnerships between one MNO and multiple banks;
  • There are several competing mobile money implementations in the country;
  • Most banks are unwilling to invest substantially in any one implementation;
  • Moblie network operators (MNOs) have struggled to develop a widespread mobile money service with a critical mass of customers;
  • MNOs have limited networks of active agents and have not hit on the critical marketing messages and product features that appeal to the mass market in Ghana.

The note concludes that rigorous market research, and high-quality product development and marketing could help to develop a compelling customer value proposition for branchless banking in Ghana.

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