Expanding Financial Services for the Poor: Cash-in/Cash-out Services

Millions of people around the world lack access to basic financial services, preventing them from accessing the economic opportunities needed to increase their incomes and improve their families’ livelihoods. While mobile money has transformed financial services for the poor, in countries where most transactions are still conducted in cash, people need a way to deposit and withdraw that money affordably, safely and seamlessly.

We believe that cash-in/ cash-out services—and mobile money agents in particular—could dramatically expand the use of digital financial services, providing the foundation on which other financial services can be built and offered to consumers, paving the way for deeper financial inclusion. This site features the latest thinking and research on how cash-in/ cash-out services could be expanded, into rural areas across emerging markets, to advance financial inclusion and empower millions of people to improve their lives.

Research and Publications

To fully understand the role of cash-in/cash-out (CICO) services in advancing financial inclusion, we have undertaken a series of research projects in Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Nigeria, and Tanzania (Pakistan and Uganda were also covered to a limited extent). These include: a geospatial analysis to assess the size of the CICO coverage gap and to estimate the number of new agents needed to fill that gap; a global study and landscaping of possible economic interventions that could support agent network expansion; and country deep-dives providing a holistic view of CICO in Nigeria and Indonesia.


For any questions or data requests related to primary research in: Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Tanzania and Nigeria, please contact our team at: cico_economics@bcg.com

Materials and publications on this website are the results of research conducted by Boston Consulting Group from 2018-2019 in collaboration with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation