Mobile Savings for Women Entrepreneurs
Business Women Connect: With support from the ExxonMobil Foundation, Business Women Connect was born out of research showing that accessible microsavings products are one of the most impactful tools for women entrepreneurs. In a context where only 8 percent of adults access formal mechanisms to save, mobile savings products offer women greater security, privacy and control over their incomes, so they can re-invest in their businesses and gradually move to higher-margin activities. The Business Women Connect 2017 pilot program, which trained a variety of Mozambican businesswomen in financial literacy and business skills, indicated significant potential and need for expansion, given the ongoing development of mobile savings. However, it also highlighted a need to support the supply side of effective, available savings products (beyond simple payments) while helping women to understand and access these products. The pilot found that the product line “LetsGo” offered by Letshego Bank, which provides an accessible formal financial service suite with 10percent interest, is particularly compelling for women due to low documentation requirements, better security and high accessibility.
Under Phase II of Business Women Connect, TechnoServe aims to increase women’s economic opportunity by promoting the effective use of formal savings products, business skills and financial literacy among women Letshego banking agents as well as women customers. TechnoServe will engage these women entrepreneurs to help them improve their own businesses as well as become effective service providers and ambassadors of formal savings to thousands of other women in Mozambique.