Interview with Tauanda Chare, Founder and CEO at Móvelcare, a Micro- Insurance Platform start-up based in Maputo, Mozambique.
For those who don’t know you, tell us in few words: who is Taunada and what is Móvelcare?
Tauanda Chare is a young and energetic Mozambican who grew up in the small town of Chimoio but later moved to study out of Mozambique and later came back to help solve issues around technology and service access. The goal of Tauanda is not to create an organisation based on limited capacity but a passageway to ICT growth in Mozambique whereby any developer is able to come and demonstrate their ability and decide their working relationship with TABECH. In his statement, “We are not creating an incubator but we are creating a hub, which I deem to call a “Technology Orphanage” where all left-out developers will feel welcome”.
Tauanda is at the moment bringing to the market of Mozambique a Micro-Insurance Platform start-up called MóvelCare, a product of his company TABECH. The Vision for MóvelCare is: Creating a world where everyone can afford to be insured.
The idea of an Electronic Micro-Insurance Platform that works without depending on the internet and that can work on any mobile handset, came about after the realisation of the neglect that exist to rural population to access financial services such as insurance.
What problem are you solving in Africa, in your country or your community?
There is low adoption of life insurance in Mozambique and over 5million have access to insurance informally and over 18million people do not have access to funeral insurance and over 20million people do not have formal funeral policies.
Looking at this number, according to ISSM the adoption of insurance at a lower of 0.3% worries the regulator as to when will the people nationwide making insurance over inevitable risks such as sudden death a basic priority.
Do you think this is the right time for your start-up to solve the problem?
Definitely, After a 2 year study of various communities in Mozambique, TABECH has developed a tele-insurance platform to bring insurance to over 3million people registered on mobile money services. The mobile money target was influenced by the spread of mobile money services use and adoption in Mozambique. With over 62% of the people using Symbian mobile phones it was necessary to give access to insurance on all access platforms meaning internet enabled and non-internet enabled devices.
A subscriber uses his/her mobile device to perform all insurance services on their mobile device without having to visit an insurance branch. They register themselvesand their beneficiaries by following simple steps using an online menu or a USSD based menu and get themselves completely registered and secured for the insurance product they want.
MóvelCare will roll-out on their pilot product focussing on funeral insurance and funeral policies since it is the most pressing type of insurance needed in Mozambique nowadays. In our portfolio of products and offers we have an unlimited offers that have never been heard before but we will make it a “MóvelCare Tradition” to launch new products each year that address issues that have years of research and proof.
MóvelCareis time conscious. There was never a good time than now to introduce a digital insurance platform as world economics focusses on going digital. If people are introduced to financial services such as mobile money and as it grows in Mozambique, this is the right time to make value based offers that are centred on mobile money usage.
The consideration of the rural community, the infrequent bankers, infrequent internet users and also the creation of digital services that is not centred on just financial gains but social transformation and services improvement has been so delayed that MóvelCare is actually late to market.
Does your solution fit in the market? (Do people want it)?
Our target market is mostly taken from mobile money users since it is easier to define a certain market characteristic then offer a product in relation to such a metric rather than say, our market is of funeral services seeker.
We are creating low cost acquisition platform for insurers and bringing about reach to funeral agencies.
Our business markets use MóvelCare as a marketplace whereby they can come and do business and even create new offers with the consumer without forming mergers but with digital synergies that makes them not to compete with each but that completely makes competition irrelevant.
Tell us more about your team, why are you the best to solve this problem?
MóvelCare has been setup with deep rooted members who not only share the passion for the products we develop together but who are highly qualified for the multi-task the challenges set us.
We have seasoned graphic designers who have worked almost on the improvement of almost every big brands in Mozambique and now are hands on MóvelCare brand.
Our software developers come from a range of specialised members headed by the technology manager who has worked with the biggest insurers and banks in the southern African continent.
Our research, financial and market analysts apart from having acquired their degree from the prestigious universities in Africa, they have spent their time helping out small to medium companies to reach market growth and to introduce products at the right time. They are our mystery markers.
TABECH set out a managing partner for each of our products, and our managing partner for MóvelCare, she has vast experience in working with governments, children, rural communities, NGOs and also comes with a vast experience in public relations not only in Mozambique but for Southern Africa.
MóvelCare founder apart from being a charismatic leader and a Christian, he is a passionate member who when set out to achieve a purpose he goes beyond any miles to bring the best solution, hence, the team he setup and himself, as a brand in the making in the Mozambican spectrum, he is a promising young entrepreneur with an aspiring career to look at.
We are advised by the biggest banks in Mozambique to ensure that our financial products addressed the financial conditions most Mozambicans find themselves in. Our website shall introduce our advisors with due time.
What makes you different in the market?
MóvelCare is insurance on your mobile phone to lessen the burden that comes with the loss of a loved one.MóvelCareis an app for the inevitable.
How do you measure your success?
Our success is measured by the number of households that are using the MóvelCare platforms and also any TABECH offers.We measure from downloads, testimonials, business opportunities and most importantly the number of business referrals.
How innovative is your start up? (Technological/social innovation)
MóvelCare is insurance on your mobile phone to lessen the burden that comes with the loss of a loved one by using low cost and inclusive technology , it combines both technological and social innovation.
What is the social impact of your start-up?
One of our social impact is women empowerment, we measure our women impact by the number of women either enrolled at TABECH or those that have been impacted by using our technology. So far, we have 5 women led business we are working with to bring about one of the first ecommerce site by end of April.
How are you scaling up the start-up?
We are in a pilot phase and we are already signing partnership agreements with one of the biggest banks in the world. When this is finalised it shall be disclosed. We believe after this partnership, there will be no limit.
However, we are going to Switzerland to pitch in a global competition for a chance to win USD$500 000.
What advice do you leave for budding entrepreneurs and new starups?
“Create a unique business model and make the competition irrelevant”
For those interested in Tauanda Chare and his startup, can follow them at Twitter @movelcare and Facebook: MovelCare Tele-Insurance or MovelCare Tele-Seguros, Or personally reach out at +25884448291 (address). Ave. 24 de Julho, Bairro Central 806, 2nd floor.