Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

Seminar

Using Smart Cards to "Bank" the Unbanked and Evaluate Programs

Wednesday, June 14, 2006 - 10:30am to 12:00pm

David Schwarzbach, Vice President, Business Development, Net1 UEPS Technologies, Palo Alto, California, described the Net1 card, a technology in use in South Africa and Namibia to deliver financial services to people with limited bank access. The system is built around smart cards that provide both data storage and processing power, allowing offline transactions between cards. More than 3.6 million people use the system in South Africa to receive welfare payments and access micro-loans; Namibia's postal bank is moving 300,000 accounts to the system. The flexibility of the cards means that they also could be used to support evaluation of social programs. Gautam Ivatury, Manager of the Microfinance Technology Program of Consultative Group to Assist the Poor, provided comments placing the Net1 card system within the larger context of technological approaches to delivering microfinance.

Download David Schwarzbach' presentation (PDF, 5MB)

Download Gautam Ivatury's presentation (PDF, 3MB)