Mobile Money

Covid-19: a blessing for mobile money?

04 February 2021

Mobile money, affectionately known as MoMo to many, has been a staple of the east African economy for years. After more than a decade since its emergence, the service has evolved as the formal financial service of choice for many underserved groups in developing countries.

Pre-pandemic days, the rapid adoption and widespread use in this part of Africa wasn’t necessarily to do with convenience, but on its necessity, since it bridges gaps for the “unbanked” population that the existing banking sector doesn’t.

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5G

5G in Africa: where were we?

04 February 2021

I remember walking through the halls of GITEX in Dubai and AfricaCom in Cape Town last year and not being able to move for talk about 5G. Whether it was infrastructure, monetisation, masts or who would “get there first”, the pure hyperbole associated with next-generation technology was, arguably, becoming tiresome. It almost reached the stage where I took off my lanyard so that I couldn’t be easily identified as a member of the press fraternity.It’s a bit like Brexit in the UK. It was a staple news diet for a few years and then it was like it never happened.

Then, at the turn of 2020 rumours started that someone ate a bat purchased from a wet market in Wuhan, China - and the world was suddenly bracing itself for a pandemic not seen in a very long time. While we still don’t know for sure how the novel coronavirus and Covid-19 came into being, what we do know is that the pandemic has caused a level of devastation that we weren’t ready for.

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Q&A

Q&A: Olivier de Boisset, founder and general manager, Liptinfor

26 November 2020

Olivier de Boisset, founder and general manager, Liptinfor

Olivier de Boisset, founder and general manager, Liptinfor

What was your big career break?

My biggest career break came in 2005 when I decided to start an ISP in Niger, Liptinfor. had previously been working in Angola for an Italian food distributor but wanted to be in charge of my own destiny and work in technology. I asked for a credit at the bank and started looking for opportunities not so far from my family in the IT and telco sectors. Securing a license in Niger was just the start.

To begin with we provided 1024 kbps down and 120 Kbps up using VSAT. With this small capacity I served 11 customers with a wireless solution. Now we are buying 2.5 Gibabits and have about 1500 customers all over Niger.

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5G

5G in Africa: where were we?

26 November 2020

I remember walking through the halls of GITEX in Dubai and AfricaCom in Cape Town last year and not being able to move for talk about 5G. Whether it was infrastructure, monetisation, masts or who would “get there first”, the pure hyperbole associated with next-generation technology was, arguably, becoming tiresome.

It almost reached the stage where I took off my lanyard so that I couldn’t be easily identified as a member of the press fraternity.It’s a bit like Brexit in the UK. It was a staple news diet for a few years and then it was like it never happened.

Read the full article