This sign is up for our San Francisco office. The archtiects and the girls are working day and night to get this right and a lot of furniture are still in the Atlantic Ocean. Shipping furniture from Europe to US is always slow. Hey we need to get the righ stuff we need to wait.
Congrats to Nick Hughes (managing director of Signal Point Partners and LBS alum) for picking up the Social and Economic award at the Economist Innovation Awards a few weeks ago held at the Science Museum in London. Nick was recognized for his part in creating the M-Pesa venture in Kenya, a mobile money-transfer initiative – something that is long overdue in the world of banking unmet needs.
M-Pesa was first launched in 2005, allow people to transfer money, pay bills and save using a mobile phone, without NO bank account. Handset to handset money transfer, you would wonder why we don’t have it here. Now it is widely adoption in different parts of Africa with over 12 million users in Kenya alone. I see this is more than a technology innovation; it is a social innovation to facilitate economic development in the developing world.
Today, it still takes weeks to clear a check, transferring money is still a pain and fees are hefty. It is time for disruptive change. PayPay was great; never really get beyond the web. It should have been Twitter Wallet or Facebook Money that we are using now. Twitpay is one of those; the service has only 15,000 users to date. They are not the only one trying to attack the payment ecosystem, seeking out ways small and large to tear down the fortress the banks and credit card companies have built to defend their businesses.
PayPal is trying to harness the creative powers of the open Innovation to rethink payments. ClickandBuy's Facebook application allows Facebook users will be able to easily execute money transfers among each other and purchase Facebook apps quickly and conveniently. Another one called Square, a new company founded by Twitter cocreator Jack Dorsey, lets anyone accept physical credit card payments through a smartphone or computer by plugging in a free sugar-cube-sized device — no expensive card reader required. I don’t know why Google is not attacking this seriously, big markets and big money. I guess that’s the problem with bottom-up innovation and efforts are not aligned with opportunities.
And I'd rather using Apple i-Money and use i-Tunes to manage my banking. Steve, forget the movie studios..go for the banks!!!! I am looking forward to getting rid of my wallet…so I have more rooms for gadgets.
Off to San Francisco for IC Innovation Masterclass and BTW our street sign is up. Competitors alerted and we are in game. Magazine gone to the printer. New staff starting this week. Partnerships discussions with a few firms. Busy week and now looking forward to catch up with my couple of dozens of frineds in the Bay area.