Demystifying electronic payments through two briefs

Client Partners
FHI360 and USAID
  • Global
  • Card Payment Fundamentals
  • Transaction Processing
  • Payment Participants
  • Card Network Economics
  • Mobile Money as Payment System

In 2014, as mobile money began gaining momentum in several emerging markets, the ability for traditional card payments to drive financial inclusion was only beginning to emerge. Many international development practitioners were increasingly meeting with payment providers but grappled with their associated business models and technical jargon. As there was no short, simplified handbook on electronic payments in the public domain, FHI360 (a large international development contractor working with USAID) commissioned Digital Disruptions to write two briefs on electronic payments.

Approach & Outcome

Digital Disruptions approached the assignment using a design lens, thinking carefully about the typical ‘end-reader’ to ensure that the outputs would cater to their needs. Most international development personnel did not have time to dig into lengthy reports oriented towards payment sector practitioners. Rather, they needed the fundamentals to prepare them for technical meetings with the private sector and government actors.

As a result, we advocated for two simplified briefs of no more than ten pages, rich in visuals and illustrations. First, Electronic Payments 101 covered the basics of card payments and payment participants as well as provided a deep-dive on the ‘black box’ of the transaction processing process. We also provided an easy-to-understand visual of the typical card economics for debit and credit transactions among the payment participants. Second, Electronic Payments 201 compared and contrasted the emerging mobile money systems with card payment schemes and introduced the motivation behind interoperability.

Digital Disruptions worked with USAID and FHI360 to develop briefs and deliver a training on electronic payments…The end products were great: a concise document explaining card payments was something that had not existed before in the public domain, and helped position USAID as a thought-leader in that regard.

Shailee Adinolfi
Former Project Director,

Next Case Study

Strategic planning for a new M-Pesa payment product

Vodafone M-Pesa Multiple markets

Developing a long-term product strategy for a new payment product for the Vodafone M-Pesa team across multiple markets.

Sign up to our newsletter
  • Washington, DC
  • South Africa
  • Ghana
  • Kenya
  • India
© Digital Disruptions. All rights reserved.