Management of Mobile Financial Services - Review and Way Forward
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Mobile financial services (MFS) represent an area of innovation and strategic importance for global initiatives against poverty and mobile telecommunication providers. The World Bank wants financial inclusion of the poor, and the telecommunication providers seek profit. Firstly, this paper introduces a MFS terminology overview before reviewing previous research on MFS and the global MFS industry picture today. The literature review on mobile payment services shows that researchers from late 90s until now have focused mostly on technology and consumer adoption. Only recently the research has picked up on studying MFS as complex ecosystem with lots of tension and dependent on local circumstances. Secondly, we provide key learnings from the Easypaisa MFS case in Pakistan. This is an example of successful management of a complex ecosystem with processes and events that moved a MFS implementation from one state to another—from cash-based OTC solution to a digital mobile wallet-based solutions. The case study is based on interviewees with the mobile operator, agencies, and governmental organizations like Pakistan Telecommunication Authority, the largest social cash transfer program in Pakistan (BISP), and nongovernmental organizations. Finally we present the way forward for MFS including research recommendations.