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Financing for the Future: Jesse Moore of M-KOPA

Updated: Feb 3

We talk with Jesse Moore, the CEO and founder of M-KOPA and one of the earliest pioneers of entrepreneurship within Africa.

Highlight Reel from Jesse Moore Interview

Jesse shares his startup journey, including how he ideated M-KOPA when he realized that there was a missing opportunity in leveraging the rise of mobile payments in Africa to help finance investments for those without a stable income stream. As one of the pioneering technology startups in Kenya, he provides useful context on how to raise funding, build strong unit economics and gather the right resources for building a business in Africa.

Tune in to hear his story and advice for younger students seeking to pursue impact within their careers.

Below is quick summary of the full interview:

  • 00:00 💡 MKOPA's mission: Financing progress for lower-income customers, offering solar, smartphones, and electric motorcycles in Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria, and Ghana.

  • 03:45 💰 Microfinance with tech: MKOPA uses mobile money and IoT for efficient microfinance operations.

  • 08:27 🔌 Adding essential products: MKOPA moved from just solar panels to also include smartphones and electric motorcycles, focusing on customer needs.

  • 10:15 💳 Flexible payments: MKOPA offers adaptable payment options for underbanked customers.

  • 14:13 💼 For-profit sustainability: Jesse Moore switched to for-profit for scalable, impactful solutions.

  • 16:56 📱 Mobile phones' impact: The invention of the Mobile phone transformed lives, providing access to information for low-income communities.

  • 19:04 ⚡ Renewable energy & EVs: Renewable energy and electric vehicles offer cost-effective solutions.

  • 19:46 💡 Career motivation: Impact, innovation, and scale drive his career.

  • 20:40 📈 MKOPA's success: MKOPA's achievement of $250M equity and debt financing in developing countries.

  • 21:34 🌍 Future investments: Challenges, profitability, and long-term investors in impact businesses.

  • 23:23 🕰️ MKOPA's vision: Geographic expansion, reaching more consumers, and introducing environmentally positive products.

  • 25:46 👩‍💼 Career advice: Don't stress about a plan, follow your passion, work hard, and value business skills training.

Full Interview with Jesse Moore


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