The Business of Financial Inclusion: Insights from Banks in Emerging Markets

Analyzing strategies mainstream banks use to drive inclusion

This study examines the underreported role of banks in driving financial inclusion. According to the World Bank’s Global Findex database, over 90 percent of the 721 million new accounts opened between 2011 and 2014 were opened at financial institutions - the vast majority banks, but this figure also includes credit unions, cooperatives, microfinance institutions, and postal banks. Thanks to advances in technology, banks are increasingly designing viable business models to serve unbanked and underbanked populations, which Accenture has estimated as a USD 380 billion market opportunity.

To better understand the strategies enabling this growth, and to help banks, their partners, and the public sector work together to reach the next 2 billion, the authors interviewed executives from 24 leading banks working in emerging markets to understand their business strategies, how technology and partnerships can enable inclusion, and where they see obstacles going forward. 

This report summarizes the survey interviews, providing a unique perspective on financial inclusion from those who make it happen.

About this Publication

By Cheston, S., Conde, T., Bykere, A. & Rhyne, E.