Kiasi APP is enabling Digital Savings for Low-Income Earners. 40 Days 40 FinTechs Tanzania Day 37

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Piggy Banks are lately used to cultivate a saving culture among children. The same, when well managed can motivate even adults to save and later enjoy the benefits of their savings.

Technology has made this even easier with new smart ways of saving and investing. In Tanzania, the Kiasi APP was launched to enable targeted periodic savings.

Kiasi APP is a digital platform established to empower Tanzanians to achieve their financial goals by saving gradually. It is a piggy bank of sorts that enables its users to electronically save small amounts until they achieve their target.

On Day 37 of the 40 Days 40 FinTechs initiative for Tanzania, we interacted with Emans Kiula, the Co-Founder & CEO of the Kiasi APP.

First implemented in Uganda, 40 Days 40 FinTechs is an annual FinTech Innovation initiative presented by HiPipo to recognize and celebrate individuals and organizations who are making significant strides in promoting financial inclusivity through the use of technology.

It is aimed at promoting innovation and collaboration among FinTechs in Africa. The initiative is designed to provide FinTechs and startups with mentorship, training, exposure, and networking opportunities to help them grow and scale their businesses.

Here is the Kiasi APP story as told by Emans Kiula.

HiPipo: What is Kiasi? Why should people be interested in it?

Emans Kiula:  Kiasi is a digital piggy bank that enables its users to accomplish their financial goals by depositing in small sums. We also provide financial knowledge and literacy inside the APP, but our major point is to have Africans being financially stable by using Kiasi.

Currently, you can get Kiasi through the Google Play Store, but we are looking forward to launching it on the web browsers and the IOS platform as well.

HiPipo: How does the Kiasi APP work?

Emans Kiula: So, in Kiasi, a user simply creates a goal that is time-lined with the required amount and the purpose of the saving. So, with that timeframe and how frequently the user wants to deposit, let us say daily, monthly or weekly; the platform takes them through the process of depositing that particular sum. If it’s daily, then it will remind them daily to deposit. It also reminds them of the amount they are expected to be depositing daily. In the end, these daily deposits will sum up into the total sums as originally stated in their goal. You have to press deposit now and then and the money will be deducted from your mobile phone by the Mobile Money Operators we are working with, but of course with your permission.

HiPipo: Are your users restricted on what they can do with their savings?

Emans Kiula: We are looking forward to having our users use their savings for the goals they originally stated. If you saved for rent or paying water bills, you should use your savings for that. We do not want to send the money back to you as this won’t solve the problem of you spending the money on something else. We are looking to the future whereby if you are saving for paying your water or electricity bills, you only input the payment number. And when your goal has been accomplished, we transfer the money and send you the tokens. If it’s electric bills or if it’s water bills, you save, we make the payment for you and just send you the receipt number that your bill has been paid already.

HiPipo: What are your views about FinTech regulation in Tanzania?

Emans Kiula: The regulators, as it stands right now are on point since you cannot allow everyone with an idea to have such systems. So, you have to grow, you have to have a certain amount of money. You have to have a number of people and institutions backing you for you to be where other institutions are. The platforms that people use to pay their bills such as Airtel money, banks and mobile network operators are all regulated. So, for you to play in the same space, it means that you must be equally as regulated as them for fair competition to prevail.

Include EveryOne Program.

40 Days 40 FinTechs initiative Tanzania is part of HiPipo’s broader Include EveryOne Program that is generously supported by the Gates Foundation and implemented in partnership with Level One Project, ICTC Tanzania, Ideation Corner, Cyber PLC Academy, INFITX, Crosslake Technologies, NG Films, Founders Academy and Mojaloop Foundation.

The Include EveryOne program is a beacon of acceleration of FinTech Innovation, empowerment for Women in FinTech and a catalyst for investment and development in the ICT sector. Minus 40 Days 40 FinTechs, other initiatives under the Include EveryOne Program are the FinTech Landscape Exhibition, Women in FinTech Hackathon, Summit and Incubator, Digital Impact Awards Africa and the Digital and Financial Inclusion Summit.

HiPipo is recognized as a premier advocate of digital Innovation and financial inclusion champion, a fervent proponent of the #LevelOneProject. HiPipo has been at the forefront, actively promoting digital innovation, Instant, Inclusive Payment Systems (IIPS), and DFS across Africa. With a legacy of advising, mobilizing, and facilitating the adoption of inclusive financial services, HiPipo’s efforts have been nothing short of transformative! For almost two decades, HiPipo has successfully facilitated the inclusive adoption of these crucial services.