The Alliance of Digital Finance Associations (The Alliance) represents the Digital Finance Profession on a global stage and promotes in-country expertise. By creating and promoting a global network of digital finance professionals and organisations, greater opportunities for sharing knowledge, networking, collaboration, problem-solving, innovation, advocacy, and partnerships will be created. The Alliance will also be a unified voice on digital finance issues and issues affecting the industry. This will help drive greater access to and use of digital financial services, increased financial inclusion, and bring social and economic transformation.

The Alliance will have eleven founding members at its official launch in September 2021, ten country-based Digital Finance Associations* and an honorary member, Digital Frontiers Institute (DFI).

These ten associations are legally registered/registering entities in their country with a diverse membership of professionals from across the digital finance ecosystem, including commercial banks, mobile money operators, payment service providers, central banks, and regulators, fintechs, microfinance, and the development sector.

These associations are already active locally, through activities such as advocacy, webinars, and training, conducting research, authoring reports and thought pieces, and producing white papers and recommendations. They are also representing the digital finance profession at national working groups and industry events.

For its member digital finance associations, The Alliance will work to build credibility and exposure globally, will strengthen through providing support, resources, and capacity building, and help them identify business models for their long-term sustainability.

The Alliance will also connect these country-based associations with each other and to organisations and institutions working in digital finance and financial inclusion globally. The Alliance will be the home of the Digital Finance profession, providing a single point of contact to all in-country digital finance associations and will seek and alert members to opportunities, partnerships and foster collaborations.

We anticipate that global networking, presenting a collective voice, creating best practices, collaboration, and partnerships will catalyse innovation, increase uptake of digital financial services, and achieving greater financial inclusion.

How did in-country digital finance associations develop?

These country-based digital finance associations developed from DFI’s Communities of Practice (COPs). DFI’s mission was to create a digital finance profession through the provision of formalized training and the development of local and global peer communities. COPs were successfully established in twenty countries in Africa and Asia, and members gained such value from networking, sharing experiences and learning. Many members expressed the desire to bring or advocate for change in their countries, particularly towards issues of inclusivity, and this along with the personal and professional value they gain drove the journey from a COP to a professional association. Ten COPs (Bangladesh, Benin, Ghana, Mozambique, Nigeria Senegal, Sudan, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe) have formed, and within the next year we are expecting Cote d’Ivoire, Kenya, Malawi, Pakistan, Rwanda, and Tanzania to take the membership total to sixteen.

The Alliance also invites and encourages digital finance associations from any country to join. We will accept digital finance associations whose membership base represents the digital finance profession and whose aims and activities align with The Alliance.

Why is DFI an honorary member?

DFI played a key role, starting the COPs, providing support and resources to help associations form, and are currently incubating the Alliance. DFI also has an important role offering digital finance practitioners’ qualifications, training and professional development. Whilst the Alliance will provide facilitate networking, foster collaboration, and promote best practice and standards in digital finance, DFI will be the partner providing education and training to the profession.

Where did the idea for the Alliance come from?

In March 2020 the twenty associations/COPs came together to discuss their plans and ambitions and a request made for a global body that they can belong to for learning and support. The idea was explored, a constitution and plan developed with DFI’s community manager and six country associations. Funding and support from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and DFI Board have allowed The Alliance to incubate and launch.

* List of Digital Finance Association Members:

  1. Association Digital Frontiers Senegal
  2. Association of Digital Finance Practitioners, Nigeria
  3. Sudan FinTech Association (Shomoul)
  4. Association for Digital Finance Practitioners, Zambia
  5. MZ – Mozambique Fintech Association
  6. Digital Finance Practitioners Association of Zimbabwe
  7. Digital Frontiers Association Uganda
  8. Digital Finance Forum Bangladesh
  9. Digital Finance Professionals Ghana
  10. Association Des Professionnels De La Finance Digitale / Dfi-Benin