MoMo: The Orange Money Digital Assistant

Guest Post

This is post number 4 of the Conversational Interfaces Blog Series and has been prepared by Teller Technologies, Inc., with whom some of our research was conducted, based on their pilot with Orange Money Madagascar.

Two of every three adults worldwide are financially illiterate, meaning they lack the knowledge and skills to use their financial resources effectively for lifetime financial security. This staggering share of people is disproportionately concentrated in developing countries, where formal financial services and financial assistance programs are often lacking. Among the financially illiterate, women, the poor, and lower educated respondents are more likely to suffer from gaps in financial knowledge [1].

In Africa, there are very few resources available to access and learn about financial services. The resources that do exist, such as getting help from banks, present their own problems. Talking to a bank teller can be extremely intimidating for a number of reasons: the bank may be far from home, there is a lot of confusing paperwork and financial jargon, and you may feel judged for having a small balance. In addition to the many studies that support this, we have also seen this first hand while interviewing low-income people across Africa [2].

Our company, Teller, aims to tackle financial literacy by bringing financial services into the hands of people in Africa, through integration with their favorite messaging apps. We partner with financial institutions to launch an automated ‘chatbot’ that can simplify account opening, provide tips for first-time customers, and make getting help easier — all via messaging apps like SMS. N

Our case study covers the details of our pilot with Orange Money in Madagascar, one of the leading mobile network operators and mobile-money providers. Orange Money currently provides feature-phone enabled financial services to over 40 million customers, mostly in francophone Africa. Teller helped Orange Money launch “MoMo”, an SMS-based financial assistant that helps customers learn how to open an account, look up fees, check their balance, and access customer service.

The full case study is available here

A webinar featuring the Teller’s experienced in building bots for the emerging markets, an overview of their work with Orange Money Madagacar and a short WhatsApp based demo!

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