Country: Tonga, Samoa
Partner: Digicel Pacific
Date: January 2011—December 2013
Grant: USD $275,000
Target: 32,000 Subscribers
Current Reach: 68,785 unique customers (as of 31st December 2016)
Formal savings for low income families remains a major challenge in the Pacific. Changing or developing new behaviors around savings requires innovative approaches combined with the right products. In the past, saving has been limited to bank accounts with expensive minimum balance fees, automatic deductions from paychecks for credit unions and mandatory contributions to superannuation funds.
Following on the success of mobile wallets launched in Fiji, Digicel planned to rollout their product in Tonga and Samoa.
After success in Fiji, Digicel approached PFIP to support the expansion of mobile money services into Samoa and Tonga. Clients would have access to quality mobile money services including microsavings products linked to mobile wallets.
The objective of this project is to provide at least 12,000 subscribers and 6000 active users in Tonga and 20,000 subscribers and 11,500 in Samoa by the end of 2012 with quality mobile money services through an agent network.
PFIP’s support enabled Digicel to develop a business plan for the Pacific roll out, identify and purchase the right technology platform, and launch in three countries. DMM now offers domestic money transfer, international remittance, and bill payment.
The launch of Digicel in Samoa and Tonga was part of Digicel’s rural strategy. Both countries have fairly small populations and both present challenges of having population centers dispersed across several islands. This project will introduce low cost technologies with regional partners who can serve both large and small countries.
About Digicel Pacific, Ltd
Digicel Group is a leading global communications provider with operations in 33 markets in the Caribbean, Central America and Asia Pacific. After 13 years of operation, total investment to date stands at over US$5 billion worldwide. The company is renowned for delivering best value, best service and best network.
Digicel also runs a host of community-based initiatives across its markets and has set up Digicel Foundations in Haiti, Jamaica, Papua New Guinea and Trinidad and Tobago which focus on educational, cultural and social development programmes.