Knowledge

Author: Ollen Machimbirike

Category:

Date: 17 October 2019

Mobile Money Market in Cameroon

In Cameroon, the opportunity in its mobile money sector is underpinned by high mobile penetration rates. More than 20 million Cameroonians out of an estimated population of 24 million are currently subscribing to the mobile phone and notwithstanding the reduction in subscriber numbers, significantly more Cameroonians have a mobile phone than a bank account! 

In Central Africa, Mobile Money Operators (MMOs) can only offer Mobile Money in partnership with banks. MMOs are doing what banks have not done i.e. serving informal or unbanked customers i.e. 85% of Cameroonians. Efforts remain to be made as so far only 5 out of 14 banks operating in the country provide mobile banking services.

MTN, Orange, Viettel and CAMTEL are the largest MMOs operating in Cameroon. Traditional companies like Express Union are also operating Mobile Money services. 

In 2017, the mobile money economy contributed USD 924 M to the total GDP (or 3.5% of the total GDP). It is projected to contribute USD 1.2 Bn, about 6% of GDP by 2022. This indicates that the mobile money/digital finance opportunity is very important, impact-full and lucrative in Cameroon.

La Regionale will be one of the pioneers in mobile payments as they are partnering with the Interbank Electronic Banking Group of Central Africa (GIMAC) to facilitate mobile payments through its core banking system Amplitude UP in the region. 

Verdant Capital is raising for La Regionale EUR 5 M of debt to grow its loan book to support its digital transformation strategy which is being launched in 2020.

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