Redesigning Digital Finance for Big Data

34 Pages Posted: 25 May 2017

Date Written: May 12, 2017


This paper suggests important strategies that digital finance providers (mobile network operators [MNOs], banks and third parties) should adopt to manage the influx of fintech (technology firms) players into the developing world. We believe that to compete or collaborate with fintech players, providers need to augment their customer data.

This will involve increasing the number of customers they have registered on digital finance systems, and the frequency of transactions made by those customers. This will enable providers to build much more complete datasets on consumer behaviour. Data is one of the most valuable assets for an organisation in this era, where the design and delivery of financial services is done through technology.

This paper suggests four strategies for doing this. The first is to lower person-to-person transaction prices to incentivise more customers to register for, and use, the service. The second is to strategise around merchant payments to garner more frequent customer usage across the system. The third is to encourage digital payment for online goods to capture more data from retail transactions. The fourth and final suggestion is to proactively increase data collection beyond financial data.

Keywords: Digital Finance, Fintech, Financial Inclusion, Mobile Money, Agent Banking, Financial Business Models, Financial Technology

Suggested Citation

Schiff, Annabel and McCaffrey, Mike, Redesigning Digital Finance for Big Data (May 12, 2017). Available at SSRN: or

Annabel Schiff

Independent ( email )

Mike McCaffrey (Contact Author)

Ulana Insights ( email )

United States


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