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Design thinking for innovative bank products in Tanzania

The rise of fintech start-ups is disrupting long-established in the banking industry. Although incumbents still control the lion’s share of the market in each segment, the rise of fintechs indicates that traditional banks are facing a new paradigm: growing competition driven by greater customer expectations of accessibility, convenience and speed of execution.

In response, incumbents now mimic the tactics used by fintechs and place greater emphasis on using design thinking, which is a human-centred approach to innovation that considers customers’ direct needs as well as technological feasibility and business viability.

Against this backdrop, Genesis was contracted to support FinSights Lab, an innovation initiative enabling solutions for financial services institutions to enhance financial inclusion. As part of this assignment, Genesis collaborated with an independent consultant to act as the design thinking partner to the lab. The lab supported a large Tanzanian bank to develop new products and services for the mass market.

One of the products developed during this process aims to provide a lending solution to farmers to smooth out seasonal shocks. This product was fully approved by the board and the bank has started onboarding farmers across Tanzania.

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