Our experience across financial services, technology and development spans three decades. In that time, we have witnessed seismic change in how these sectors can deliver upon development goals. Today, these different sectors are converging to enable the digital development of emerging economies. This offers the opportunity to governments and the international community to improve the delivery of services to the marginalised and undeserved in these countries and to ensure that their continued development is inclusive.
We launched Digital Baobab to bring our depth of experience to this evolution. Digital transformation is complex and the processes to ensure that it is inclusive even more so. We have witnessed over three decades how these can be successfully implemented, from digital transformation, the roll out of digital communications infrastructure, financial inclusion and literacy, digital inclusion and literacy through to digital identity and the establishment of digital platforms for government. We aim to work with all stakeholders in this process from public sector, private sector and the international community, to act as an honest broker to ensure that all voices are heard and that there is mutual understanding of different positions such that digital development is inclusive to the benefit of all.
The Baobab tree [‘bau-bab’ or ‘bay-o-bab’ depending on your location] is a symbol of life, positivity and well being across Africa. It can live for thousands of years, hold up to 5000 litres of water, its fruit is a super food and its disproportionate trunk provides sanctuary for travellers. Combined with its compelling elegance we felt it was an appropriate emblem for what we were aiming to achieve. Furthermore, its ability to thrive in harsh and changing environmental conditions provides an apt metaphor for countries and communities trying to adapt to today’s digital landscape.
Digital Baobab is lead by Killian Clifford who has multiple years’ experience across financial services, digital and development working with the public sector, private sector and multilateral institutions. In the past Killian has acted as the policy director for mobile money at the GSMA and also ran Mobile Money Consulting, a specialist consultancy focusing on mobile financial services. He holds a Master’s Degrees in International Development and also a MSc in Finance.
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