1. What motivates you to be part of Bounce Back Ideas?*
As we have experienced ourselves the consequences of being a migrant in a society with high inclusion barriers, we are inspired by the idea of developing a solution that contributes to ease the financial, economic and social inclusion of migrants in host countries, to help them increase their resilience and achieve their goals, overcoming their situation of vulnerability.
The Bounce Back Ideas Challenge allow us to spread our idea and expand our network to contribute to the economic recovery after the Covid-19 crisis. The team is comprised by of young professionals specialized in the financial area, with the purpose of contributing to the development of financial culture and education in our region.
With financial education we have the opportunity to invest in human capital, build capabilities and transform people's reality, while helping increase and leverage financial inclusion levels to improve the usage of available financial products to help alleviate poverty in the long run.
2. Problem/Opportunity Statement*:
When negative economic shocks happens, such as the COVID-19 crisis, low income households’ weaknesses become evident.
Venezuelan families are experiencing hard times, as the country’s crisis has shrunk the supply of financial products and erased any public or private initiative to promote financial education.
Venezuelan families living abroad faced a different scenario, until COVID-19 crisis shook off the world. Nearly 5 million Venezuelan live abroad, almost one third live in Colombia. Immigrants have always been a vulnerable group, but in this context they become particularly important because immigration status may impact financial exclusion levels, as there are knowledge gaps regarding some technologies, and language barriers, which automatically exclude people from the formal financial system.
Venezuelan immigrants that left the country expecting significant improvement in their quality of life are now dealing with an unprecedented crisis that threatens their means of sustenance.
3. Short Idea Description*: Up to 500 characters
- Meta is a dual-purpose digital platform that aims to connect migrants with their local supply of financial products and services, by providing information on bank accounts, credits, remittances, among others and also develops financial skills.
- Meta will use artificial intelligence to determine the user's profile and develop a predictive model that offers options tailored to age, gender, educational level and other socioeconomic data, with the aim of offering tools to manager income, encourage savings habits and financial planning.
4. Long Idea Description*:
The solution we propose is the design and implementation of center for digital financial resources for migrants, which will provide fundamental knowledge and tools in matters of personal finance, planning and usage of financial products. Through innovative and easy-to-understand educational materials, accurate recommendations and transparent comparisons, users will develop capacities that will enable an efficient use of the financial resources available to them and, in the long term, will generate changes in their behaviors and attitudes.
Meta educates and informs users, so that they make a better selection of the available options. In this sense, women will be a group of special interest in our program, we are committed to generating a positive impact on the confidence of this segment of the population, to empower and encourage them to make better decisions and manage their resources efficiently.
Meta is intended to evolve into the most comprehensive “digital financial mall”, that will be a great ally for companies in the financial sector, as it is proposed to be a window for the promotion of reliable financial products and services, and can contribute to optimize the costs of attracting and serving migrants and get new clients in this segment of the population.
In emerging markets, such as Latin America, the industry for financial products and services is growing fast and we see new fintech solutions every day, but most of the population is totally unaware of their existence and potential benefits. This scarcity of information is even more significant among migrants, and the related costs of “not knowing” are also heavier for them. Our goal is to add value by increasing financial awareness and financial literacy, because by educating the demand (users) we can help financial services providers (supply) reach clients that are potentially more profitable.
5. Why is your idea innovative?*
Meta will make use of technological tools that allow the offering personalized recommendations and support, in addition to educating and connecting with solutions and products, to successfully achieve the financial inclusion of the participants, guaranteeing that they will be able to select and optimize the use of financial products to which they will have access.
As an example, we can identify a user, such as a woman, 35 years old, single, leader of a family, entrepreneur, with irregular income and a university degree, and offer her tools to manage their income, promote saving habits, financial planning and connect her with the providers that offer the financial products that she is able to handle and better fits her current situation.
Meta proposes to be a Market Place of financial services for migrants, a platform where they will have access to the products and services that they are able to understand and handle, while they are able to improve their financial capacities.
6. What are the potential impacts of your idea?*
The digital program that we propose, goes beyond the financial inclusion of migrants, since it transversally impacts various areas: we help generate trust and autonomy, so users can become informed consumers and better manage their resources. We impact productivity by providing financial planning tools that are easy to understand and apply, so that users can improve their quality of life and strengthening their businesses. We impact services by connecting participants with institutions that operate in their environment and that offer solutions to their needs. We impact their personal finances by contributing to the financial culture of users and promoting their inclusion, making them aware of the costs and risks, preventing them from debts and commitments that they are not able to fulfill.
60% of Venezuelan migrants in Colombia are women, so our commitment is to make a positive impact on their self-confidence, to support their decision making process and management of their resources.
7. How do you plan to implement this idea?*
The implementation of Meta in a first stage is targeted at the 4 Departments that concentrate more than 60% of Venezuelan migrants in Colombia: Cundinamarca, Norte de Santander, Atlántico and Antioquia. The population present in these Departments amounts to 1,080,000 people, out of a total of 1,800,000 migrants throughout the country. This will be the potential market for the prototype implementation.
In a next stage, we plan to scale to other geographical areas of the region that concentrate a significant number of migrants, such as Peru, Chile and Panama.
We are working to establish networks and alliances with the numerous organizations and people who work to provide assistance to migrants and vulnerable groups, to segmenting them and guarantee access to the largest possible number of users.
So far, we have advanced conversations with UNHCR and IOM, who would be willing to support us in the implementation of the program, once we have the prototype ready.
8. Why is your team ideal to implement this idea?*
We are a team of young professionals with a highly specialized career in the financial industry. Our purpose is to contribute to the development of the financial culture and financial education in our region.
This team has trained more than 12.000 people by supporting top financial institutions in Venezuela, training vulnerable groups, single mothers, small business entrepreneurs, managers and the general public. Through the use of an easy-to-understand language, practical methodology, edutainment, simulators, among others, we were able to demonstrate that it is possible for people to learn to better manage their resources and make the right decisions to improve their quality of life.
This team was also in charge of designing and developing a set of educational materials that stands out for its practicality and dynamism in the teaching methodology, the results were a Personal Finance virtual course and a Fixed Income virtual course that are both available for Venezuela and Latin America.