At The MasterCard Foundation Symposium on Financial Inclusion, the first plenary session discussed how leadership and the organizational culture at financial service providers are critical to ensure true client-centric practices. CNBC Africa’s news anchor, Gugulethu Cele, moderated the discussion with Doug Baillie, Chief Human Resources Officer of Unilever, Lelemba Phiri, Group Head of Talent and Managing Director for Zambia and Malawi at Zoona Group, and Ramesh Ramanathan, Chairman and Founder of Janalakshmi Financial Services.
Financial inclusion for all by 2020 can only be achieved if financial service organizations do more to focus on the needs and expectations of the two billion people in the world currently excluded from the formal financial system. At the recent MasterCard Foundation Symposium on Financial Inclusion, held in Cape Town from November 19-20, speakers reinforced the idea that client centricity is key to inclusive access to finance.
Sub-Saharan Africa is home to 60 percent of the world’s uncultivated arable land. Despite the potential, Africa’s farms produce, on average, much less per hectare than farms in many other countries. As a result, more than 200 million individuals, almost two thirds of the entire U.S. population, are chronically undernourished. And, as we have seen, the majority of those affected are living in rural areas where the small farm is their livelihood.
This interview with Ann Miles, Director of Financial Inclusion at The MasterCard Foundation, was conducted by Rahim Kanani and originally published on Trust.org
“Greater financial inclusion is correlated with higher living standards, better health outcomes, higher education levels, and an overall improvement in well-being,” explained Ann Miles, Director of Financial Inclusion at The MasterCard Foundation. In an interview tied to the second annual MasterCard Foundation Symposium on Financial Inclusion, we discussed the foundation’s approach to financial inclusion, their efforts and impact on the ground thus far, what it means to put clients at the center, and much more.