Mama Money is the world’s first social business money operator. Helping migrants in South Africa send more money home to their families.
AFRICA’S FIRST CASHLESS MONEY TRANSFER OPERATOR
The story of Mama Money starts with a big yellow school bus. Travelling through Africa, Raphael and Matt began making plans…
Before founding Mama Money, Raphael worked at the United Nations World Food Programme, providing food to people in need. An aid worker by heart, he was inspired to start a company that directly tackled a social problem, the high costs of international money transfer to and in Africa, the most expensive in the world.
Matt has a wealth of experience in business management. Over the years he has worked in direct marketing, recruitment and the loyalty industry. After meeting Raphael in Mozambique during his sabbatical, they started Mama Money. Matt is passionate about people and business for good.
Together, they thought: Let us start a social business money transfer operator. A company that provides a cool, modern, safe and low-cost way for migrants to send money home to support their families. Rather than looking at profit-maximisation, let’s see how we can directly assist people who don’t earn a lot. Mama Money is designed to help African migrants, who left their home and their community in search of better opportunity, contribute better and more directly to their families survival and development.
The money sent home is mostly used for food, medicine, housing and children’s education. Therefore, if less money gets stuck with the money transfer operator, more money arrives in the pockets of people who really need it. It's really that simple: Lower money transfer fees will lead to better nutrition, better health care, better accommodation. A brighter future. To put the problem into numbers: Money transfer costs are incredibly expensive. The World Bank estimates that cutting prices by 5% points can save migrant families an extra $16 billion a year. In comparison to the World Food Programme budget of $ 1 billion, that's huge! Keeping in mind the World Food Programme reaches 100 million beneficiaries a year with a $1 billion budget. Now imagine what families throughout the world could buy with an extra $16 billion.
So that’s where the idea for Mama Money comes from.
People often ask why we called it Mama Money? Well, firstly a lot of people send money to their Mama. Secondly, we are busy expanding into other financial services, and the Mama is the backbone of the African economy. Hence, Mama Money…
AFRICA’S FIRST CASHLESS MONEY TRANSFER OPERATOR
While our social business ethics forms our core identity, our technology forms the basis of our operations. We are a tech company, providing a service that people really need. It’s not a luxury product like video games or shoe designs on the internet. Mama Money uses the advances in modern technology to provide a purposeful and low-cost money transfer solution.
Our launch product is Africa’s first completely cashless money transfer system. Around the world, innovative ideas around payments are blossoming. If nearly everyone can call nearly everyone else around the world, why is it so hard and expensive to send money to your loved one? In the modern world, money is also just another electronic message.
So our goal is clear. Let's bring down the cost to send money home. In light of our global humanitarian and financial crises, let’s leave greed behind us. Let's use the human, financial and technology resources we have to create a better world. So that’s where the idea for Mama Money comes from.
So Mama Money comes along and changes my mother's life. My mother is 71 years old. For the first time in her life, she has a bank account in the form of a Cabs TextCash Card. Now she can withdraw money from the ATM, she can use the speed point at the shops. She can also save her money. When I spoke to her this morning she was so happy. Thank you Mama Money for bringing banking facility to the marginalized. To my mother and other grannies back in Zim, I say Mama Money is here for you. Herzilet Dube
Raphael obtained a Degree in Law from Durham University in the UK and a Masters in Development Studies from the University of London which looked at rural livelihoods, agricultural development, famine and food security. He was a strong social activist during his university studies. He has worked in a range of development environments and was a volunteer in Thailand after the Tsunami disaster. He worked at the United Nations World Food Programme for several years, travelling across the world to provide food to people in need. During this time he completed a range of courses from first aid to conflict management. Realising that the combined value of foreign investment and official development assistance (international aid) did not match up to the value of the remittance industry in Africa, he was inspired to start a company that directly tackled a social problem. His vision for Mama Money was further inspired by his experience in the aid sector where he saw bureaucratic and cumbersome systems minimising the much-needed support that the poor needed. From the donor to the country to an organisation to projects and then only on to recipients, he wanted a solution that had an immediate impact.
Mathieu Coquillon trained in teaching after matriculating and went on to clock up a wealth of experience in business management whilst working in South Africa and in the UK. He worked as an English teacher at a language centre in Vietnam and then taught English to overseas students and professionals at Good Hope Studies in Cape Town. Over the years he has worked in direct marketing, recruitment and the loyalty industry. He is a proficient businessman, who is also passionate about people and social justice. After meeting Raphael in Mozambique during his sabbatical, they joined forces to conceptualise, develop and launch Mama Money. We started a company not built on maximising profit, but on providing a great, much needed low-cost service. We are social entrepreneurs.
- Sales & Marketing Teams
- Community Activations
- Transaction Switching
- Reserve Bank Reporting
- Customer Smiles Facilitators
Dec 2014 - Issuing of license by South African Reserve Bank
Feb 2015 - Launch of Mama Mama
Jun 2015 - 5 000 Customers
Dec 2015 - 10 000 Customers
Jun 2016 - 25 000 Customers