Digital adoption in remittance payment flows

Varying rates of digital adoption across send and receive-sides impact payment-flows

Very simplistically put, payment is the movement of money from A to B. And the world is becoming increasingly comfortable with money flow going digital. Whether its a consumer paying another consumer (P2P) or consumer paying a merchant (P2M) or business paying its vendors/suppliers (B2B) – the levels of digitization of these use-cases is very impressive. But, what happens when the speed of digital adoption is very different at point A vs point B. What does that mean for the digitization opportunities, challenges and product related nuances for the send and the receive side. Let’s take domestic remittances as an

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Finding out what is really broken, usually takes more time than fixing it !

Find what’s really broken before fixing it

I enjoy coding. While I have a long way to go as a programmer, coding does put me in a zen kind of a state. The mix of learning and building something new, is almost magical. It does fuel and inspire the problem solver in me. And it is a great teacher too. I just learnt that …. Finding out what is really broken, usually takes more time than fixing it ! Last week, I was trying to fix a bug on a piece of code that was first written few years back. The software itself has undergone multiple iterations

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Factory and Lab mindsets in product management teams

Factories and laboratories evoke very different images. With a factory – I am usually thinking the industrial revolution in all its glory – machines, assembly lines, robots, workers, all working in a disciplined and predictable manner – churning out products that are all identical and meet the claimed specifications. Low room for error. Designed for scale. On the other hand, when I think of a lab – I usually come up with a white coat wearing team of specialists pouring over data. Going deeper into a topic. Asking fundamental questions. Pushing boundaries. New ideas being discussed and prototyped. While I

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Payment friction

Quest for Friction Less Experiences

Yesterday, I got to experience the WhatsApp payment flows. It surely felt like a neat friction-less experience both for adding/mapping bank accounts and for in-chat payments. And in my excitement I forwarded it to a friend who didn’t have any UPI handle so far. And I was surprised by the reaction. How does WhatsApp know my bank account ??!!  And frankly I had looked at it the other way round – they are showing me the specific account that I want to associate here. And this got me thinking about friction in digital consumer experiences. I remembered my Amazon experience.

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Fast data Elevators

Beyond Big Data – A Small and fast data example

Big Data is all the rage. Everywhere you go, any meeting or presentation one sits through, Big Data seems to be there. But there are opportunities beyond big data. E.g. how we handle small data fast. Here’s an example of small data that I experience almost everyday. In many corporate buildings in India, you would notice that you need to punch in the desired floor into a panel, which prompts you which lift-car to hop on to. Simple yet brilliant solution. You club the waiting passengers into specific cars by their desired floors. The average wait time is lower, the

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Effective rules implementation

Good rules should be designed for higher adoption

How do we drive adoption for rules in a community, or even at a country level ? Should a good rule be designed to make it easily enforceable too? I think it should be. If we want to build a society where most follow the rules, enforceability should be an important criteria. To decide whether a new rule should be introduced or not. Whether an existing rule needs to be modified or scrapped. Why? It is my belief, that when we have rules that can be easily broken without any consequences, it sends a signal to the community. And this

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search-vs-social

Search Vs Social – the long tail of ad revenues

Google and Facebook together took away 64% of the total US online advertising spends. And Facebook had around 65% of the overall online display ad-spends. These are incredible levels of consolidation in the ad spends among the leaders. Enough has been said and discussed about the challenges Google is facing and how mobile ad revenues are critical for Google in its journey ahead or why Facebook ad revenues would keep growing While one cannot argue with the numbers and the line of reasoning, I somehow felt that this discussion has ignored the long tail of ad-revenues or the lead generation

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Unit Economics

Unit Economics in the times of Auction Marketing Models

Unit Economics is all we hear these days in the consumer technology world. Unfortunately for many start-ups seeking venture funds, this is the biggest hurdle they need to cross to build a strong case for their business. What is the concept of Unit Economics I will not go into the definition and relevance of Unit Economics. That’s well documented here and here. Or just Google it. Lets refer to Microeconomics 101 for our discussion – Marginal Costs(MC) and Marginal Revenue(MR). We all know that its a healthy sign if Marginal Revenues are higher than Marginal costs. And this delta (MR-MC)

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Wheat Green Revolution

Public policy, ripple effects and feedback loops

I have always been intrigued by product design and by extension policy design (& implementation). If the government were to look at itself as a start-up technology venture, the policies, schemes and guidelines issued by the government would possibly be the “products” of this venture. And like any good product manager, one should study not just the immediate impact of change(s) in product design but also the delayed and maybe stickier changes in consumer behaviour. And that is what I want to share with you today. Shift in dietary habits due to Green Revolution Sometime last month, I was visiting

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Payments are a critical piece – Digital Banking ToolKit

In India, digital and mobile Payments is a really HOT space right now. HDFC Bank introduced PayZapp which intends to be the gateway for all m-commerce transactions, with incremental offers as the initial incentive ICICI bank introduced “Pockets” – a way for even non-ICICI Bank customers to have access to mobile payments Axis bank launched Ping Pay and Lime 11 new Payment Bank Licences have been issued. This not only includes some of the bigger telecom players but also the likes of PayTm. All this action is triggered by multiple factors including a huge opportunity to move transactions away from

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