13 Sep 2012

Interview with Rob Sussman, Joint CEO, ZunguZ


We are delighted to welcome ZunguZ as participants at AfricaCom 2012.  Their Joint CEO, Rob Sussman, will be participating at the pre-show Mobile Money Lab on Tuesday 13th November.  Below are some of his thoughts on the opportunities in both the mobile money and wider telecoms markets in Africa.

Rob Sussman, ZunguZ
What is ZunguZ’s position in the market and how do you see it develop in the coming year?
ZunguZ is unique is that it intercepts the Low Banked, under banked and unbanked at the point of purchase, offering them a full suite of banking like services that were previously accessible only to the privileged few.
ZunguZ penetrates on the same markets where user growth and adoption is aligned to the uptake in mobile banking and social internet related services

What changes are you expecting in Africa’s telecoms/media/ICT market?
With the migration to smart phone technology in emerging markets we will see a new segment of consumers and consumer related services meet at new points of engagement

How are consumers’ needs evolving and what needs to be done to address them effectively?
The consumer is more informed and able to research and be influenced by their personal trusted network prior to engaging with a merchant or committing to a purchase thereof

What are the opportunities in the mobile money market in Africa? What new types of services and partnerships are likely to emerge?
There is a big focus on mobile money in emerging markets, ZunguZ focuses on mobilising existing currencies and does not create and does not create a new form of mobile money or voucher.  ZunguZ focuses firmly on leveraging on existing banking relationships, existing banking services, existing mobile networks, and existing social networks to provide an agnostic platform which places people at the centre of existing and new innovative financial services and merchant services. With this we will see new relationships being formed between banks and mobile operators

What does it take to be a successful start-up/entrepreneur in Africa?
The most important thing is to understand the culture of people in the various regions, the technology is the same all over the world.  Also, to address the challenges when one faces when doing business in Africa an entrepreneur must be more innovative, more agile and more dynamic in order to springboard mature markets

What are your expectations for this year’s AfricaCom?
To network with the industry leaders, position our platform with the correct partners and cement new strategic partnerships