Can big data shape financial services in East Africa?

Psychometric big data—including online quizzes to judge character or personality traits and analysis of Facebook “likes”—is garnering increased attention. Suppliers of psychometric data or psychometric tools, such as EFL, believe not only that their data and analytics are predictive but also that they have a key advantage in their applicability to everyone, even clients with limited credit history (“thin-file” clients), as a starting point. When layered with other big and traditional data sources (e.g., social media, mobile phone, bureau data, bank historical data), proponents expect psychometrics to become even more powerful. Indeed, Equity Bank conducted an experiment with EFL’s psychometric scoring model and found it both predictive and useful; they plan to integrate it into applicable models across their regional subsidiaries.

 

 Moreover, Juhudi Kilimo decided to partner with EFL in order to evaluate character as part of their risk assessment. This was previously carried out by loan officers, but they believed the EFL approach would be more objective.

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