Scale2Save Campaign

Micro savings, maximum impact.

Banks in Africa face unprecedented challenges. A demographic “youth bulge”, poor educational opportunity, and limited access to finance make the continent prone to economic malaise and societal struggle

Compounding these are digitalisation and globalisation, powerful forces that affect Africa’s 1.2 billion inhabitants in new ways. Like other regions of the world, Africa looks to financial institutions like savings and retail banks to help address most, if not all, of these obstacles at local level, in swelling cities and remote rural areas alike. Especially daunting for banks is Africa’s population, set to quadruple by century’s end. Among the many challenges that population growth will present is the need to serve peoples’ financial needs better at the macro level while connecting better with people at the micro level.

Given the population-driven future of Africa, thequestion arises whether banks in the regioncan meet the growing needs of people there.Banks can. According to the McKinsey GlobalBanking 2017 report, the African banking sector is among the most dynamic in the world, thesecond-best performing global banking marketin terms of growth and profitability as well as ahome to significant innovation.

The question is how? The answer is offering products and services based on customer need that are usable, affordable, accessible and sustainable. While doing so, banks have to remain viable businesses that receive a fair return. A prime example is how best to offer much-needed low-balance savings accounts.

This report provides insight to help answer that question. The findings of this annual report on savings and retail banking in Africa provide a unique and useful analysis of what a sample of WSBI member banks face when it comes to small-balance savings accounts provision.

Results from 2018 WSBI member bank survey