Optimizing the business model design for a fintech start-up’s market expansion

Client Partners
Kopo Kopo
  • Kenya
  • Facilitation
  • Business Modeling

In 2010, Kopo Kopo, a Silicon Valley-backed start-up operating in Kenya, began offering payment services to small businesses to allow them to accept mobile money as a form of payment. A few years later, under increased competitive pressure domestically, they sought a strategy to expand outside their home market of Kenya. However, the executives wrestled with critical questions, including what technology to build, which customer segments to address, and which regions of the globe to enter. All of the options seemed plausible, at least on paper, but there was no consensus among the team. The start-up hired Digital Disruptions to provide strategic guidance on a tight timeline.

Approach & Outcome

After conducting one-on-one interviews with each of the executives, including those from sales, IT, product, and finance, it became apparent that the team lacked a common framework to develop their assumptions and thinking. Digital Disruptions thus conducted a series of in-person and virtual sessions to slowly build alignment on the main features of an expansion plan, adding its payment subject-matter expertise where needed.

Rather than delivering a “static” plan with fixed recommendations, Digital Disruptions’ output emphasized that the business model for the start-up’s market expansion was inherently dynamic. As such, we provided a repeatable method for Kopo Kopo to use by identifying the most crucial hypotheses to validate over the ensuing weeks and months. The output provided the necessary clarity to the start-up’s executive team and was delivered within four weeks of project kick-off.

Using Lean Start-Up methodology, Digital Disruptions successfully assessed broad market trends, interviewed stakeholders and identified new approaches for the team… the deliverables were used to recommend to the board that the company make an investment. I can recommend Digital Disruptions as a thought leader in the digital finance space and a firm that can pair vision with a track record of execution.

Dylan Higgins
Co-Founder and Former CEO,
Kopo Kopo

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