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Ben_Kuhn comments on Estimating the Value of Mobile Money - Effective Altruism Forum

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Comment author: Ben_Kuhn 05 January 2017 09:33:11PM 1 point [-]

Re 1, it's worth noting that M-Pesa was administered by very different teams in different countries. In Kenya it was allowed to operate mostly as a startup with limited oversight from Safaricom (or anyone else), whereas in other countries (to varying degrees) the people running M-Pesa were constrained by stricter management from the telecom's country head. This means that there are obvious ways in which M-Pesa was executed less well in other countries. For instance, Wave integrates with M-Pesa in both Kenya and Tanzania, and despite running on exactly the same technology, the Tanzanian system's uptime is substantially worse. Similarly, the quality of their agents and their customer support staff in Tanzania is noticeably lower.

Since Wave isn't hamstrung by oversight from a stodgy and risk-averse telecom, I think you should give less weight to examples from countries other than Kenya as a base rate.