New Partnership with Kiva.org
We are very excited to announce that we have a new partnership with one of the biggest names in the microfinance sector, Kiva.org.
Since we are not a microfinance institution we will be collaborating with Kiva as a “non-traditional partner”, posting pictures and stories about our shopkeepers in Mexico on their Web site. Kiva members, in turn, will then be able to loan money to these shopkeepers at 0% interest to help them finance the cost of the hardware required to run our software. Our shopkeepers will then pay Kiva members back via monthly payments to Frogtek (which we will pass on directly to Kiva for disbursement).
We plan to post our first “loans” later this summer and include links to their Kiva.org profiles in our next newsletter.
Financial Inclusion and Tiendatek
Shopkeepers who use Tiendatek in Mexico now have their own bank account as well as the ability to process credit card payments. This means that our clients can now accept more forms of payment and, soon, pay their suppliers electronically.
This integration is a big step towards our goal of creating a “closed ecosystem” where a shopkeeper does not need to use physical cash to manage their business. Not only does eliminating cash provide for greater operational efficiencies but it also results in a more secure environment for small stores.
Planning a Larger Roll-Out with Grupo Carvajal in Colombia
We are now working with our Colombian partner Carvajal Tecnología y Servicios to plan how we are going to roll out our Tiendatek software nationally in Colombia. We completed a pilot project with Carvajal in March so expect more details on the next steps soon.
New Operational Model in Mexico
We have more than tripled the size of our operations team in Mexico as we continue to focus aggressively on growing our network of users. In total we have hired seven new people who are now visiting and training new shopkeepers daily. We have also created two new positions in the Operations group: a VP of Customer Care, who is responsible for training and supporting all new shopkeepers, and a financial administrator who is tracking monthly payments.
Our growing network of users is already generating revenues via monthly payments, selling airtime through our platform and credit card transaction fees.
New CEO of Frogtek Announced
Our former Chief Marketing Officer Marcos Eshkenazi has become the new CEO of Frogtek. Marcos already had a long and successful track record as an entrepreneur before joining Frogtek and he will draw upon those experiences in his new role as we continue to shift from focusing predominately on technology to managing an increasingly complex operational model in several countries.
David del Ser remains the Founder and Chairman of Frogtek focusing on strategy, investor relations, and product development, among many other responsibilities.
Frogtek in the News
Bloomberg Businessweek has named Frogtek as one of America’s Most Promising Social Enterprises and you can vote for us on the Businessweek Web site here. Please vote!
Separately, a technology news publication has named Frogtek as one of the top 25 “hottest” mobile companies in the world. This list was based on conversations with investors in the mobile space and announced at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this past February.