Different yet similar — behavioral biases of low- and moderate-income people in Bangladesh and Vietnam
“We see the potential volume, but do we design profitable products for low-and moderate-income (LMI) people?” MSC faces this question repeatedly in discussions with our clients across Asia and Africa—including our partners in Bangladesh and Vietnam under the MetLife Foundation-funded i3 program.
Through this two-blog series, we question key behavioral biases to consider while creating compelling, engaging, and profitable products for the low- and moderate-income segment. The first blog speaks of the macro-economy and demography of the Bangladesh and Vietnam markets. We also take you through the digital financial services progress in both countries and the steps governments take to expand digitally. The next blog in this series will look at the similarities and differences of the LMI segment in Bangladesh and Vietnam.
Credit for low- and moderate-income people in Bangladesh—can new-age banks and FinTechs deliver the regulator’s wish?
The waves of digitization and technological advancements have led to the opening of MFS accounts for 60% of the population in Bangladesh. The country now boasts more than 1.1 million agents. Despite the widespread use of MFS and internet access, only 9.1% of people access the formal credit system. Digital credit can be a stepping-stone in Bangladesh due to the lower cost of delivering credit through digital means, combined with the mass digital readiness of consumers. Several solutions have emerged from banks, NBFIs, FinTechs, MFSPs, MFIs, and development partners, such as City Bank’s “Nano Loan” product pilot to Prime Bank’s loan product for blue-collar workers. Together, stakeholders are trying to forge partnerships to address problems around access to credit and social development in Bangladesh.