As part of its on-going financial inclusion efforts in Uganda and across Africa, HiPipo, a diversified company with operations covering digital, financial inclusion, content production has unveiled the Women in FinTech hackathon and summit.
Slated for September 12-17, the Women in FinTech hackathon will have developers convene to develop financial inclusion solutions that address their communities’ needs, aided by Level One Project principles and the latest payment technologies such as Mojaloop open source software.
During the hackathon, participants will interact with facilitators, mentors and judges drawn from across the world. Registration for this first of its kind hackathon has kicked off on August 17 and will go on until Friday, September 4 after which shortlisted teams will be announced and guided on the next steps.
According to a statement from HiPipo, eligible participants will be those that will have registered a team of 2 to 4 participants; the team leader must be a woman and at least 2 of the team members must be women too.
Organized by HiPipo under its Include EveryOne program in partnership with Crosslake Tech, ModusBox and Mojaloop Foundation, this women focused hackathon will culminate into the Women in FinTech summit on Friday, September 18.
While announcing these two activities, Nicholas Kalungi, the chief operations officer of HiPipo noted that it is important to have more women involved in financial technology as this will ensure that products and services on the market are well-tailored to serve women, who while are the majority are less included.
“In line with both Bank of Uganda and Level One Project’s financial inclusion principles, the Women in FinTech hackathon and summit will promote the adoption of ICT-based financial services because they deliver affordable and innovative financial solutions to the poor, vulnerable and least included groups such as women., ”Kalungi said, adding;
“The project holistically supports both the United Nations and the government of Uganda’s efforts of using ICTs for socio-economic transformation. We need to bring more women on board so that there can be more products that properly address the needs of the majority women.”
The Women in FinTech hackathon and summit come at the back of the great success of the recently concluded 40 Days 40 Fintechs initiative and the FinTech Landscape exhibition that attracted over 100 financial sector organisations from across Africa, between May 13 and July 30, 2020.
According to Damali Ssali, a trade development expert, the lack of representation of women in the fintech space means that financial technology solutions are being developed without the full understanding of the needs of those that are the majority and most affected.
“It is important that the existing fintechs take deliberate steps to have more women in their senior leadership positions so that they are inclusive and address the diversity issue. I believe that activities such as the upcoming Women in Fintech hackathon and summit are certainly a good start as there is need to take deliberate steps to support this segment. This and more is needed if we are to achieve gender equity in this space.”