Jumo, a large-scale, low-cost financial services platform with operations in Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda, has won a coveted accolade dubbed the Clients at the Centre Prize, an award given to the most client-centric company in the field of finance.
The $150,000 prize recognizes the innovative work of the South African-based company as a large-scale, low-cost financial services marketplace that serves emerging markets.
The Prize was presented to Jumo by the Mastercard Foundation this week at the third annual edition of the event. Jumo had already been shortlisted for the award in October.
The Prize highlights best practices in financial services where client satisfaction is a priority. Close to 100 financial service companies around the world submitted entries to the competition. An international panel of judges selected three finalists who presented to the audience at the 2017 Symposium on Financial Inclusion in Accra, Ghana.
A 400-person audience then voted for the world’s most impactful and sustainable financial service provider that puts clients at the centre of its thinking and operations for the benefit of poor people in developing countries. The award is to be used to expand or reinforce client-centric practices within the winning organization.
“For anybody in a customer function, this is probably the most exciting prize to win because of the people who are voting for it,” Buhle Goslar, Director of Customer Intelligence at Jumo said after being awarded the Prize.
“They really know about customer centricity; for them to vote for us is a great acknowledgement of the work that we’ve been doing,” Goslar added.
The Mastercard Foundation believes that banks and other financial service providers in developing countries should focus more on the needs and expectations of people living in poverty.
The Foundation stated that putting poor clients at the centre of the design of new financial products and services helps bring them into the formal banking system, improving their livelihoods and their ability to plan for the future.
“The Symposium on Financial Inclusion (SoFI) has focused on client centricity for the past five years,” said Ann Miles, Director of Financial Inclusion at the Mastercard Foundation.
“We are thrilled to award this year’s prize to Jumo for its exemplary work of putting clients at the centre of its business model. As we reflect on the past five years of SoFI, it is more important now than ever before to recognize companies such as Jumo and encourage them to continue providing access to financial products for those who need it most,” she explained.
The other two Prize finalists were ftcash, one of India’s fastest-growing financial technology ventures which aims to empower micro-merchants and small businesses with the power of digital payments and loans, and Destacame, a free online platform in Latin America that empowers users by giving them control over their data to build their financial capabilities and to access financial products.