Learn how our efforts have benefitted women and banking institutions in this region.
Usage and Engagement for Underbanked
In 2017, we saw that 120MM women were either unbanked or had an account that they did not use in Southeast Asia. The region finds itself at a critical inflection point for financial inclusion. Governments consider it a “hot burner” political issue. Coupled with cost-effective and improving technology, banks and financial service providers (FSPs) are seeking new customer bases due to saturated markets offering an important entry point to serving new low-income segments, such as ultra-micro entrepreneurs and remittance recipients in Indonesia, low-income factory workers in Cambodia and G2P recipients across the region.
How We're Addressing the Problem
In Southeast Asia, our strategy is to work with large FSPs, such as state-owned banks, BRI and BNI in Indonesia, and the top three e-wallets & fintechs in each market. We seek out partners that are committed to driving women’s financial inclusion and can do so at scale. Additionally, through our policy and advocacy work, we work to influence key policymakers to implement policies that strengthen the digital and financial ecosystem in these markets. Recent policy and advocacy initiatives include our active participation in Indonesia’s G20 in 2022, including the Ministerial Conference on Women’s Empowerment, and our ongoing partnership and capacity building with Indonesia’s Women’s Digital Financial Institution Coalition (KIKDP), which is sponsored by Indonesia’s Ministry of Women’s Affairs.
Areas of current and future focus for us in Southeast Asia include supporting MSME growth through use of e-commerce platforms, increasing engagement with Sharia-based financial services, and expanding the collection and use of gender-disaggregated data by FSPs and policymakers, with a particular emphasis on two key segments – women ultra-micro-entrepreneurs and unbanked/underbanked low-income young adult women.
What We Are Learning
End-to-end customer journeys must include account education and a strategy to drive higher account usage in order to maximize the value for women. Also, women ultra-micro entrepreneurs require more than financing to grow their businesses; they need programs that improve their business capabilities, provide better access to markets and information to help them make better business decisions, and support formalization of their businesses. We’ve also learned:
- Partnering with state-owned banks accelerates impact and scale
- Our provision of a business case is imperative
- Replicating solutions still requires customization
- Policy and advocacy work requires long-term and cross-functional relationships with senior government officials across multiple ministries and regulatory bodies
Results We Are Seeing
Through our partnerships with BRI, BNI, DANA, and WING Bank over the past three years:
- Our G2P Account Activation and Engagement solution developed in partnership with BRI has reached more than 1.2 million Program Keluarga Harapan (PKH) beneficiaries since 2021.
- Our Payroll Account solution with WING Bank has been rolled out to more than 84,000 Cambodian women factory workers in 2022. As a result, approximately 40% of these women factory workers actively use their digital payroll accounts.
- Our Digital Remittances solution with DANA was rolled out to more than 270,000 women in 2022.
Our Southeast Asia Team
Christina MaynesRegional Head
Vitasari AnggraeniPolicy and Advocacy
Angela AngAdvisory Services
Martha HindriyaniEvidence and Insights
Elwyn PanggabeanAdvisory Services
Policy and Advocacy
Sharada RamanathanPrograms and Relationship Management
Glory SunartoAdvisory Services
Ker ThaoAdvisory Services
Our Regional Partners
Financial Service Providers (FSPs)
- Wing Bank
- Credit Bureau of Cambodia
- Boost Capital
- CARD MRI
Policymakers and Regulators
- Bank Indonesia
- Coordinating Ministry of Economic Affairs
- Executive Office of the President of the Republic of Indonesia
- Otoritas Jasa Keuangan (OJK)
- Pusat Investasi Permerintah (PIP) – Ministry of Finance
- Ministry of Social Affairs
- Ministry of Women’s Empowerment
- National Bank of Cambodia
- Ministry of Economy and Finance
- Ministry of Women’s Affairs
- Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP)
- Insurance Commission
- Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
Papua New Guinea
- Bank of Papua New Guinea
- Lembaga Demografi
- Mitra Mandiri Riset (MMR)
- Indochina Research
- RISE Indonesia