Britam and Little App have partnered with the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP), a global partnership housed at the World Bank that works to advance the lives of the poor through financial inclusion, to introduce Britam’s insurance and investment products to ride-hailing drivers via the Little App platform.
The partnership will allow platform workers, such as taxi drivers and delivery agents, to invest small amounts of money towards their financial goals as well as protect themselves against shocks via insurance coverage.
Platform workers, those who sell goods and services to end customers through online matchmaking mechanisms such as Little App, are a growing segment in emerging markets. In Kenya, the platform economy is expected to reach $345 million (Ksh35 billion) by 2023 and presents an excellent opportunity to alleviate the growing unemployment challenge. The importance of platform economy was further highlighted during the pandemic when platforms like Little App-enabled deliveries and transport to the urban population living under lockdown.
To meet the financial needs of platform workers, CGAP, Britam and Little App are partnering to design and roll out innovative financial products. Given the piecemeal and unpredictable nature of platform work, traditionally designed financial products structured around regular income streams are not appropriate for this segment. Instead, they need affordable, flexible products that fit their needs, preferences, and financial habits. This partnership aims to address this need by bringing together Britam’s products, Little App’s reach and engagement, and CGAP’s financial inclusion expertise to fine tune the product and customer journey.
“While platform workers face some of the same financial risks and opportunities as other informal workers, we believe there are also notable differences. It is important to design tailored financial products that meet their unique needs in ways that also make business sense. We hope to explore this opportunity by working with like-minded partners such as Little and Britam on product pilots,” said Gayatri Murthy, Financial Sector Specialist at CGAP leading CGAP’s research and outreach on platform livelihoods.
CGAP is implementing similar pilots to extend innovative financial services to platform workers in other countries, including India, Uganda, South Africa, and Nigeria.
“We consider the drivers on our platform as our partners in Little’s success. Since inception, we have built our services with their welfare in mind. This has resulted in tremendous loyalty from the drivers towards Little. We believe that this new partnership will take our association with drivers to the next level and will improve their livelihoods by enabling them to save towards their goals,” Kamal Budhabhatti, Little App’s founder and CEO said.
Saurabh Sharma, Britam’s Director of Emerging Consumers said, “This partnership is a milestone in financial inclusion of platform workers who are ignored by most traditional financial institutions. By leveraging CGAP’s global experience and technical expertise, we aim to roll-out innovative products that meet platform workers’ unique needs. Our existing partnership with Little has already been very successful with more than 100,000 bite sized policies sold within two years. This engagement will take this partnership to another level.”