‘Sub-Saharan mobile financial services use more than triples in six years’ – Ericsson report

06 December 2021

Nearly half of all consumers in sub-Saharan Africa use mobile financial services in 2021 –more than a three-fold increase in the last six years – according to a new Ericsson Consumer and Market Insight report.

Titled “Mobile Financial Services on the Rise”, the report also highlights the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on mobile financial services uptake, with 54% of consumers surveyed saying that they use mobile financial services transactions more now. Some 70% are more positive towards mobile financial services as a preferred contactless alternate to cash.

The report research, conducted by Ericsson Consumer & IndustryLab early this year, surveyed 3,200 consumers across six sub-Saharan African countries to assess the growth of mobile financial services in light of technology and infrastructure gains across the region, as well as the Covid-19 pandemic impact on financial behaviour.

Senegal, Angola, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Ghana and Ethiopia are the countries that feature.

The report further highlights that users list faster transactions as the number one factor that would encourage them to use mobile money services more often in the near future.

“This new research underlines the significant empowering role that mobile financial services play in Sub-Saharan Africa, both in combating the impact of the pandemic and in fuelling economic development across Africa through the transformational potential of expanded and affordable access to financial solutions,” said Lucky La Riccia, vice president and head of digital dervices, Ericsson Middle East and Africa. “Our aim is to support the digitalization of Africa through technologies such as mobile broadband. Ericsson’s mobile financial solutions support this aim as we accelerate financial inclusion.”

Communications service providers (CSPs) are the most popular mobile financial services supplier, with up to 90% of sub-Saharan African mobile financial services users now using the technology through these companies, according to Ericsson.