I have absolute respect for the results that have been achieved by dedicated people in the
GCash is a Structured SMS, predominantly closed payment solution, focused on a large under, or un-banked population in the Philipines. It provides for the creation of an electronic wallet that some-one can access with their cellphone by sending "code-words" in open SMS commands. The solutions security is based on a "M-PIN" (that is often stored on the cellphone in the open), limits in terms of transactions and the local Philippine Identity document. The operation in the
The problem with proposals to deploy GCash in other countries (as it was done in the Philippines) are the following, and prospective clients/partners, should consider these carefully prior to engaging with Globe:
The GCash deployment as is currently deployed operates under a special Central Bank dispensation (resolution 116 of 2005). Although the Central Bank of the
The role of banks (and Credit Card Associations)
The relative strengths and ability to innovate of banks in relation to mobile operators differ significantly from one country to another. The Philippine market with two very strong and innovative mobile operators is not a blueprint for every market. As a matter of fact, this is probably quite unique. It is our experience that one should consider a total eco-system of payments when deploying mobile banking. Banks in general will not allow a Mobile Operator to deploy a GCash type solution without a strong (and often effective) reaction. Participation by banks to send money to GCash in the
It has been shown over and over again that remote support of technology solutions is something totally different to operating a solution in country. The fact that GCash is being operated successfully in the
It is unlikely that the security dispensation deployed at GCash will be acceptable to other markets (and specifically to mature banks). The fact that the M-PIN remains resident on the phone after the SMS has been sent, that the M-PIN is often in the clear will not be acceptable to many banks. Security management that is heavily dependant on the availability of a general Identity Document can also not be deployed in many countries where this is not the case.
Philipino’s are famous for their SMS ability.
Even if a client is interested in deploying a GCash like solution (e-Wallet, with an exemption from the Central Bank), a solution provider should be used with a track record in deploying solutions in different countries and time-zones. We at Fundamo have relevant expertise, an understanding of different behaviour in many countries and the ability to deploy legal solutions given different central bank dispensations. It is important to deploy mobile banking solutions with a proper understanding of local realities as well as what is possible with technology.