moWoza

Creates mobile phone marketplace platform that allows informal cross-border trading and access to credit.
2013 SEED Africa Award Winner Green Technologies Maputo, Mozambique

moWoza enables informal cross-border traders (ICBTs) – 80 % of whom are women in Sub-Saharan Africa – to order inventory using text message and Web applications. The business model is based on a trained agent-led network which introduces moWoza to ICBTs, and a logistics channel made up of community members. The service includes receiving text messages for inventory-related pricing information, placing orders via text message, paying through mobile wallets or at local agents and receiving text message notifications of shipment and drop-off details.

Eco-Inclusive Impacts

moWoza empowers especially female traders to trade efficiently and transparently in the communities whilst improving their livelihoods.
  • Improving the livelihoods of informal female cross-border traders in Africa by eliminating long, dangerous or expensive journeys.
  • Empowering informal cross-border traders in the community by providing them with a cost-efficient service, while improving their digital literacy.
  • Reducing waste for local landfill and garbage dumps, as paper receipts and brochures are replaced by digital text-message receipts and brochures.
  • Reducing GHG emissions, as cross-border traders make fewer journeys.
  • Increasing efficiency, governance and transparency along the value chain.
  • Creating employment opportunities in sales, marketing and IT for young school-leavers.
  • Increasing opportunities for women to source goods and trade without leaving their communities and families.

Partners

This enterprise is supported through its partnerships with various stakeholders, ranging from national and international organisations, investors, research institutes, suppliers, governmental bodies, NGOs, other social and environmental enterprises and more.

MPesa and MKesh are mobile phone-based money transfer and micro-financing services which enable moWoza’s customers to pay for the services efficiently.

The Center for Finance, Law and Policy at Boston Univesity is assisting with import/export and regulatory requirements, social metrics and consumer finance research. 

Maputo Living Labs is helping moWoza through its initial growth stage and assisting with software development and testing.

Silver Vanity Trading is moWoza’s fast-moving consumer goods merchandising partner, responsible for sourcing and warehousing its stock.

Tech Equity is a cloud brokerage service which is supporting moWoza with cloud-based inventory solutions.

The Mozambican Informal Crossborder Trading Association is building mobile inventory and ordering solutions to meet the needs of its members.

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Suzana Moreira

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