Ecosystem Plays to Solve for Women’s Lifecycle Needs

Creative Collaboration

This panel showcased examples of ecosystem plays from several GBA stakeholders and their experiences and successes in solving for women’s lifecycle needs. Paul introduced the panel by mapping discussants’ plays around the 12 large network economy ecosystems he presented earlier in the day. Eva-Maria from Mastercard and Annastacia from KCB Bank presented Jaza Duka, a groundbreaking partnership between Mastercard, KCB and Unilever to extend credit to SMEs based on inventory transaction data. Susan described Diamond Bank’s partnership with mobile provider MTN to leverage mobile technology and data to increase payments, savings and credit solutions – leading to at least 10 million women accessing financial services. Liza shared AXA’s efforts to map out female customers’ journeys across multiple lifecycle needs and how they are partnering with ecosystem players to offer value in these moments. Sharmila discussed three of IFC’s ecosystem plays focused on childcare, housing and non-financial services.

Key Points

  1. The partnership between KCB, Mastercard and Unilever combines distribution data from Unilever and analysis by Mastercard on how much inventory a store has bought from Unilever over time. The results from the analysis are used to provide a micro-credit eligibility recommendation to KCB. This solves for the problem that banks usually require formal credit history or collateral, which many women do not have, resulting in entrepreneurs borrowing from informal lenders at high interest rates and trapping them in a cycle of debt.
    1. This partnership also shows the importance of building on each stakeholder’s strengths: Mastercard had the data, KCB could extend the credit and Unilever could provide the product – eliminating any need for replication.
  2. Given AXA’s lower level of customer touchpoints, Liza outlined its transition from a “payer of claims” to a true partner for women by leveraging technology and data to develop an approach that focuses on women’s key life moments.
    1. AXA’s gender approach focuses less on developing new products and more on bundling products and services. AXA has partnered with different players to help women access different support, including maternity and non-financial services like mentoring and networking.
2018 GBA Summit
  1. Diamond Bank’s Y’ello Account combines financial and telecoms services with a loyalty scheme. Active MTN customers can subscribe to the account from their mobile phones by dialing a code and begin receiving services like mobile bank accounts, funds transfer, balance checks and bill payments. So far 10 million Nigerians have signed up for the account.
  2. IFC’s research showed that if an employer provided childcare, they could increase employee retention by 4x. They have encouraged partnerships with childcare facilities and are drafting guidelines that employers can adopt.
    1. IFC has also worked with a number of ecosystem players – including FSPs and non-profits – to develop non-financial solutions for women’s SMEs.

2018 GBA Summit


Senior Partner, Head of Digital for McKinsey in Western Europe
Presentation (members only)

Vice President, Corporate Engagement, Mastercard
Presentation (members only)

Director Retail, KCB Bank
Presentation (members only)

Head, Diamond Woman, Diamond Bank
Presentation (members only)

Global Head of Women’s Market, AXA

Senior Manager, Financial Institutions Group, IFC
Presentation (members only)


We can’t have the internet of things without inclusion of the female economy.
— Paul Jenkins

Businesses can only thrive when economies thrive, and a successful economy is only sustainable when it is inclusive.
— Eva-Maria Baumer

In our partnerships we make use of everyone’s strengths so no one needs to reinvent the wheel.
— Annastacia Kimtai

More and more institutions in Nigeria are waking up to the business case for serving women well.
— Susan Okoh

AXA tackles key life moments of women customers by building the right ecosystem of partners to answer their needs.
— Liza Garay-de Vaubernier

IFC works across childcare, housing and non-financial services ecosystems to move the needle.
— Sharmila Hardi