FIBR’s MSME and Superplatforms Work

Our research on MSMEs is to better understand the merchant ecosystem, their mental models, behaviors and practices, so we can create incentives for merchants to digitize their business and connect them to tailored financial services, such as microloans for working capital.

Featured Insights

Superplatforms: Inclusive Digital Ecosystems of the Future
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Superplatforms: Inclusive Digital Ecosystems of the Future

This white paper considers the likely effects of an important new phenomenon that may accelerate the “pull” factor of digital...

By FIBR
Superplatforms: Unlocking the Potential of Merchants, E-Commerce and Financial Services in Africa
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Superplatforms: Unlocking the Potential of Merchants, E-Commerce and Financial Services in Africa

FIBR explored the potential of superplatforms, the major tech platforms such as Facebook, WhatsApp and others and their impact...

By BFA GLOBAL
Njeri and the Superplatforms
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Njeri and the Superplatforms

The promise of e-commerce for small business owners in Africa   Njeri is a 29-year-old single woman living in...

By Amolo Ng'weno
How Small Merchants Use Social Media to Sell Online in Africa
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

How Small Merchants Use Social Media to Sell Online in Africa

Superplatforms & Small Merchants Series #2 Meet Agnes, Moses, & Anita Traditional, “informal” retailers dominate the commercial landscape in...

By Anne Gachoka
Beyond Marketing: Generating Trust to Sell Online
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Beyond Marketing: Generating Trust to Sell Online

Small merchants need to create and maintain trust with customers to sell online, but they could use more help...

By Amolo Ng'weno
Hitting the Sweet Spot: What Do Small Merchants Need to Survive and Grow Their Business?
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Hitting the Sweet Spot: What Do Small Merchants Need to Survive and Grow Their Business?

MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium enterprises) need capital. They need startup capital, they need expansion capital and they also...

By FIBR
A Day in the Life of a Shopkeeper
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

A Day in the Life of a Shopkeeper

Running a Small Shop is a Tough Job When I was growing up, the corner store was a convenient...

By Javier Linares
The Sweet Spot: Designing Credit Solutions For Small Merchants
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

The Sweet Spot: Designing Credit Solutions For Small Merchants

How do you design and pilot a credit solution for small merchants? This new case study from FIBR shares...

By FIBR
Getting the Timing Right: The Life Cycle of a Small Shop in Africa
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Getting the Timing Right: The Life Cycle of a Small Shop in Africa

MSMEs Have Different Financing Needs in Four Discrete Stages Small shops or “dukas” account for 80 percent of employment...

By Michelle Hassan
Making Business Work for Dukas
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Making Business Work for Dukas

Understanding the Financial Health of Small Shops in Africa Juma*, a small shop owner in Nairobi’s Kibera slum, is...

By Carmen Merab
Micro-consulting: Using WhatsApp Groups to Support Agents
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Micro-consulting: Using WhatsApp Groups to Support Agents

Tips for Communicating with and Helping Agents Through a Messaging Service Agents serve as the face of PAYGo and...

By Anne Gachoka
What if We Offered Business Support to Small Merchants Over WhatsApp?
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

What if We Offered Business Support to Small Merchants Over WhatsApp?

Micro-consulting to Provide MSMEs with Practical Advice Micro and small retailers (referred to as small merchants here) play a...

By Rasima Swarup
Who are the Small Merchants Who Make a Real Living Instead of Just Making Some Extra Money?
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Who are the Small Merchants Who Make a Real Living Instead of Just Making Some Extra Money?

Certain Behaviors Can Help Providers Unmask a Business’ Readiness for Financing We previously explored the life cycle of a...

By Michelle Hassan
WEBINAR: HOW CAN SMALL MERCHANTS GET THE MOST OUT OF E-COMMERCE USING SUPERPLATFORMS?
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

WEBINAR: HOW CAN SMALL MERCHANTS GET THE MOST OUT OF E-COMMERCE USING SUPERPLATFORMS?

Small merchants in emerging markets are increasingly adopting digital commerce to expand their customer base and market their goods...

By FIBR
Visiting a Merchant Shop in Kibera in VR
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Visiting a Merchant Shop in Kibera in VR

An Immersive Experience with Informal Retailers in Africa Produced and Developed by: Abi Steinberg, Videographer and Director: Adam Wisema...

By Abi Steinberg
Work with What You’ve Got to Offer MSME Credit
Digital Financial Services |

Work with What You’ve Got to Offer MSME Credit

The Case in Kenya Starting from the Microfinance Bill in 2006 up to the runaway success of the mobile...

By Shirley Mburu
Promising AI Applications to Help Shopkeepers Manage Business
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Promising AI Applications to Help Shopkeepers Manage Business

Four Lessons for Training Computer Vision Models Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies offer many opportunities to augment and extend business...

By Javier Linares
Sparking Growth in Corner Shops
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Sparking Growth in Corner Shops

Finbots for Shopkeepers Series #4 In this series I have described how smartphone sensors can generate raw data and...

By David del Ser
Tuning Into Shops with Sensors
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

Tuning Into Shops with Sensors

Finbots for Shopkeepers Series #2     What is the one thing small shopkeepers and professional hackers have in...

By David del Ser
Rethinking Financial Inclusion Through Small Businesses and their Smartphones
Digital Financial Services |

Rethinking Financial Inclusion Through Small Businesses and their Smartphones

How FIBR combines low-income customer’s relationships with local businesses, emerging data captured through smartphones, and a broader set of...

By David Porteous
How the product recognition app helps find and price products
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

How the product recognition app helps find and price products

FIBR’s product recognition app helps merchants and shopkeepers to find and price products based on characteristics in smartphone camera...

By FIBR
How can the FIBR AI applications help the shopkeepers?
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

How can the FIBR AI applications help the shopkeepers?

FIBR sees the potential of AI and machine learning for small business merchants and shopkeepers in the ability to...

By FIBR
How can the merchant assistant help shopkeepers get answers for their shop?
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

How can the merchant assistant help shopkeepers get answers for their shop?

The merchant assistant is a voice-activated artificial intelligence tool that allows shopkeepers to obtain certain on-demand information related to...

By FIBR
How the suggested purchase app helps merchants forecast demand
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

How the suggested purchase app helps merchants forecast demand

FIBR’s suggested purchase app allows merchants and shopkeepers to budget their costs and expenses based on a demand forecast...

By FIBR
How can shopkeepers use a smartphone camera to count and track inventory and sales?
Livelihoods and Microenterprise |

How can shopkeepers use a smartphone camera to count and track inventory and sales?

Javier Linares, the FIBR project’s product manager, describes how smartphone cameras can help shopkeepers track inventory and sales. This...

By FIBR