WorldNeeds – The Missing Side of the Bitcoin

The Missing Side of the BitCoin

Still a draft;    

Alternative Headlines;
Send Capitalism to Catch Capitalism
Unseating Governments. The Easier, Unstoppable Path to Decentralisation

Summary

There’s a First-Class Lever relationship between Businesses - on the left, Consumers – the supporting fulcrum and society & environment (#worldneeds) – on the right. The lever is Capitalism. Competition whose fuel is advertising/marketing is the reason businesses far outweigh #worldneeds. Altruism marketing – adding #worldneeds to capitalist competition has the potential to fast-track a near balance between business and #worldneeds.

As inequality, and the social/environment burden becomes more complex and urgent, development aid, taxes, philanthropy, and social/environment activism and other things we’re using to reduce the imbalance between businesses and #worldneeds are just too little too late. Competition seems to be the magic wand – invisible hand that turns markets almost overnight. The question is why don’t we apply it to #worldneeds?

Since capitalism is under 3D attack including from billionaire capitalists themselves, it’s time to move the fulcrum - consumers further to the right. In most cultures, consumers buying a product for a small percentage to directly go to a cause they care about sounds socially awkward but society and environment are in an awkward situation because businesses thrived by exploiting the world, it’s the world’s turn to exploit businesses.

The concentration of wealth, power and lifeline resources at the top increases with the continued use of the current extractive advertising/marketing model. This is because it’s designed to push people to spend on profiting shareholders alone. Altruism/cause marketing instantly and competitively decentralizes and distributes wealth to shareholders, but also to society and environment making them more productive. Concentration of wealth at the top deprives social/environmental productivity.


The Missing Side of the BitCoin

A Government Service Robot

Despite the state’s many & daily programs and services, the youth’s ‘hearts and minds’ experience everything else but the state. Every day I wake up and; when I brush ‘Colgate’ sticks in the mind and heart, when I buy airtime MTN sticks, when I withdraw money Stanbic bank sticks and all other products and services hang in our hearts and minds as positively impacting our daily lives. It is these experiences with products and services that shape our views, opinions and eventually our predisposition to trust them with a vote of confidence by buying them over again and again.

But to the state’s disadvantage when I sleep and wakeup without gunshots, the state never hangs in my mind nor heart, when I drive to office on a smoothly tarmacked road, when I receive free medical drugs from hospital, when I receive many other state services, the state rarely hangs in our hearts and minds as positively impacting our lives. On the contrary the overwhelming negative stories in media set up our hearts and minds to view the state as negatively impacting our lives. Like the many bounties of God, we’ve evolved to take state programs & services for granted and instead choosing to squabble over state failures.

In most developing countries including Uganda there’s a brutal battle for the ‘hearts and minds’ of the youth between incumbents and opposition. The youth have no party loyalty, demand better services, insisting on convenience, are tech savvy, always connected, focused on innovation and are effecting political change to serve their demands.

Both Opposition & Incumbents are failing to reach the youth “physically emotionally, and psychologically”. In failing to reach citizens, incumbents are actively promoting the oppositions’ agenda giving youth reasons to rally with the opposition’s ideas. Unlike opposition, incumbents have the advantage of creatively using what they’ve; ‘done’, ‘currently doing’, and ‘planning to do’ to make the youth positively engage, experience and think of the state as positively impacting their daily lives.

While government has tried to reach the youth through several means, a more innovative and deliberate effort is urgently required to counter the precipitating wave opposition gains.

This means consistently aligning state activities with a 2-way communication stream targeting youth using their beliefs, messaging, language, and tools they understand and use daily. There’re 24 million mobile phone users, this is pretty much everyone above 18 years.

So, what if a resident of Kooki woke-up and found a message on their phone;

“National Medical Stores; has delivered 50 tons of ARVs, 20 tons of Malaria drugs, etc… to Kalisizo Hospital. – Gov’t Service Robot”, then later in the day another message

“Uganda National Roads Authority will start construction of the Kagamba – Ddwaniro Road on 20th Oct, 2019. You’re encouraged to give us feedback as it progresses – Gov’t Service Robot”, then when he goes to Kalisizo hospital the next week and there’re no malaria drugs, he sends a message via the Gov’t Service Robot

“I walked all the way from Buyamba with my sick child and was told there’re no medicines yet you said you sent the malaria drugs? – Yokkoniya Kaggwa” the robot responds politely

“Dear Yokkoniya, we apologises for the inconvenience, Your message has been received and will be attended to shortly. Expect an update soon. – Gov’t Service Robot” it then routes the message to the concerned official, the District Health Officer, NMS, and can escalate to a political leader if no action is taken within a week. If after investigation, it is discovered that the drugs were stolen as is usually the case, the robot sends a message to Yokkoniya and other residents in the region.

“Dear Yokkoniya, our investigations have determined that the medicines batch No. 94343 were stolen. The pharmacist – Serwanga Tony was arrested and facing criminal charges. NMS has sent drugs again and they will be delivered on 23rd Aug, 2019. – Gov’t Service Robot”

One of the most urgent problems facing farmers and youth including those financed by OWC is access to market for their products. This is not because there are no buyers, rather there is no intelligent connection between youth products and buyers. The Gov’t Service Robot can start a cultural and mindset shift of people waiting for buyers to come to them. If I need market for my beans, I just log onto the Gov’t Service Robot and type, “Beans Buyers”, it then lists potential buyers and their price, transport offers for me to choose.

If this 2-way mutual communication can be extrapolated to the whole range of government services (education, social development, financial services, police, agriculture, extension services, health, land matters, etc.) that intersect with the daily lives and experiences, incumbents can be assured winners of the ‘hearts and minds’ of the youth and citizenry at large. When the youth say they want change, the actual change they yearn for is one that reaches, engages, and sincerely promises them on their turf – the mobile phone isn’t currently under-harnessed by incumbents.

Why the Robot

I have followed the president’s speeches and writings on different media, each time it’s public service officers that let him down on achieving his visions. The robot can augment public service officers on the important task of ensuring a warm 2-way daily communication of public. The robot doesn’t tire, doesn’t sleep, effective with repetitive tasks, not corrupt, cheaper to maintain, and most importantly learns and improves service efficiency as more and more people interact with it.

It also stores lots of key data-points that the state can use to improve the planning and  budgeting process, improve program/service efficiency and maintain a healthy relationship with citizens.

Creative Capitalism: Recalibrating Capitalism to Fast-Track #worldneeds

Giving hasn’t been reinvented since its start. With social and environmental issues (World-Needs) changing at snail pace, and the internet reducing global divide, it’s time to reinvent giving to fast track a better world for more people. Innovation is about mass adoption usually through cost reduction. So how about we reduce the cost of sacrifice from giving money and time to giving just purchase decisions?

I’m lucky to be at the centre of two seemingly unrelated initiatives that have given me insights into how we can collect as much money as possible but most importantly use it to effectively do the most good to fast-track reducing inequality and its effects.

I have been a web developer and digital marketer for a decade and recently launched a human managed Digital Marketing as a Service platform targeting SMEs in developed markets who want to reduce digital marketing costs. But also in 2016 I started a P2P lending initiative that has since extended over $200,000 from microlenders to SMEs who have won low-risk opportunities like contracts, LPOs etc; no interest but profit/loss sharing, no collateral but trust.

My digital marketing experience tells me that fierce competition between products & service brands is limited to satisfying only ‘Personal Needs’ of consumers, but these same consumers have secondary needs of seeing progressive change in ‘World-Needs’. Adding another metric of ‘World-Needs’ to the competition can generate the much needed resources to finance ‘World-Needs’.

My P2P lending initiative has taught me that the poorest who work as hard if not more than us, are far less productive because they CAN’T access credit – they’re high risk, and CAN’T innovate their products and services not even the most basic innovations like product bundling, marketing, etc – because they have basic education if at all. These two “CAN’TS” limit to peanuts how much wealth flows down to them from above the wealth pyramid.

As a result they live a subsistence life, most times have to choose only one or two of life’s basics but not all; food, health, education, shelter, clothing, water etc. I know women using mosquito nets provided free by The Global Fund not to protect themselves against malaria but to make passion fruit juice, mushroom growing and other small income generating activities.

A “consumer revolution” where brands compete on “World Needs” beyond “Consumer Needs” can be the ‘decentralized bank’ that generates money to offer interest free, unsecured credit and as well as product/service innovation fees. It’s 2019 not 1920, through inclusive digital transformation enhanced by ‘collaborative competition’ precipitated by millennials’ biosphere consciousness or relentless desire to improve social and environment issues, we can fast track access to credit and markets making the poorest more productive and enabling them access to more of life’s basics.

In 2017, ecommerce was responsible for around $2.3 trillion in sales and is expected to hit $4.5 trillion in 2021 (Statista). On average, millennials now make 54% of purchases online.

“67% millennials believe that working for causes is an integral part of life, and they’re drawn to big issues. Instead of making one-off donations, they’re more likely to integrate their causes into daily life by buying products that support social or environmental causes.” BCG – The Millennial Consumer – Debunking Stereotypes 2012.

When shopping for products, 50% of millennial parents say they try to buy products that support causes or charities. (Fort Mill Times)

At the base of this platform we propose a new form of legal corporate ownership transparently enforced by blockchain. 40% private and 60% for “World Needs” The 40% will ensure sustainability of the project, employing high-quality engineers, digital marketers, data scientists, accountants, operational expenses like media publicity among others to make it a global acclaim, prioritize and maximize impact on world needs.

Blockchain’s provenance and immutability can ensure transparency on how the 60% is spent, track status and progress of interventions, track traffic/conversion to websites, its consensus and finality to enforce agreed network rules.

Our vision is to build a platform to disrupt philanthropy and corporate social responsibility by decentralizing giving to the buyers improving the whole experience of giving, and accessing charity. But most importantly make this collected wealth effectively do the most good, Lift more people out of poverty, save more lives and the environment. We believe, with a Global GDP of $87.51 trillion, the only pain and suffering people should endure is one money can’t fix.

 

What is the world’s most valuable resource? Online Traffic.
What is the commonest human identity? Compassion.
What is the world’s biggest problem? Poverty.
How can we integrate Traffic, Compassion, & Poverty to better the world for all of us?

Experts say data is the most valuable resource but it’s online traffic. In a digital economy businesses grow by attracting more visitors to their websites than competitors. It’s why some of the richest companies Google, Facebook, etc. thrive on traffic. It’s $308 Billion industry. Because there’s tight competition for traffic, these global companies use our data to optimize their traffic sales. But what if we shifted or enhanced competition to something that doesn’t necessarily require our data but our compassion; the commonest human identity.

Something we all care about, something that saves rather than kill, something more digitally inclusive than exclusive, something that cares rather than ignores, something more productive than regressive, more distributive of global wealth than extractive, decentral than central, something with global interests not oligarchic interests, something we can call “World Needs”, i.e. social and environmental needs.

Products and services providers have already exceeded our “Personal/Customer Needs” to the extent that we don’t need another selfie app while hurricanes kill more of us due to increasing global warming, and other preventable risk factors.  We can turn the turf of competition upside down so merchants care not only to our ”personal needs” but also “World Needs”, which turn out to be secondary personal-needs because we all need social and environmental/climate security.

Which brings us to what is the world’s biggest problem? It’s Poverty which limits 3B people from accessing life’s basics and eventually 18 million people die because of poverty related issues annually. Poverty also indirectly affects the rich.

Scientists tell us we are on course for a chain reaction of irreversible catastrophic events if we don’t do something radical to change the course of our; well, deteriorating ship, ‘the world’ within this decade.

Yet this year another 3 billion trees will be cut because 3 Billion people can’t afford climate-smart methods for daily activities. This warms up earth further and then more hurricanes that cost life and property worth $256B in 2017, wild fires, species extinction, etc. From immigration in German, radicalization leading to terrorism in the UK, to gang violence in Australia, poverty affects not only the poor but the rich as well.

World Bank says to stem poverty micro, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) which employ 4 in 5 need to access ethical credit and markets to grow to employ more people and pay better salaries. It’s 2019 not 1920, through inclusive digital transformation enhanced by ‘collaborative competition’ precipitated by millennials’ desire to improve social and environment issues or biosphere consciousness we can fast track these two.

Globally there is a $2.5 trillion SME credit gap which is worsened by predatory credit institutions charging over-the-roof interest rates that keep small businesses and employees in a never ending loop of poverty.

This is through platform that showcases short stories of the poorest hustling to survive, their work challenges, household aspirations and budget what they require to target the digital customer.

 

 

E-Commerce to Elusive Poverty; Digital Transformation Needs to Be Inclusive.

dp286dlwsaa5osfImagine a Uganda with only 3% unemployment, and 90% living above $5 a day. Imagine a Uganda where it takes small and medium businesses less than one week to sell their stock. Imagine a Uganda where 95% of small and medium businesses aren’t turned away by credit institutions, and easily contribute tax revenues. We’re no longer imagining–we’re building this Uganda.

The trend is digital. The masses are digital. Corporates are already digital. Government is going digital. But Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are sluggish. Yet digital transformation translates into economic transformation down to even personal incomes.

SMEs employ 4 in 5 people, and contribute 33% of GDP but with only 1-2 going on past the first year, they are the most vulnerable, and to support them we need innovative partnerships to ensure an inclusive digital transformation.

From Elmot’s market research, the number one problem SMEs faced is reaching clients to buy their products and services. Yet we are 41 million people and from e-payments, shipping/delivery, regulations, to the fast-paced internet usage, all relevant factors required for a vibrant e-commerce ecosystem are now in place, but the mindset of business owners needs a nudge to focus on the digital customer.

The problem is no longer technology, or experience. Rather how do SMEs make their businesses ready for a digital world, a digital client? This means strategic partnerships, with payments providers, transportation providers, conventional media channels, digital marketers, financing institutions, packaging, government, and development partners to redirect SMEs to the digital trend.

The overarching objective of this partnership would be helping SMEs use technology to find new distribution networks and models, to create sustainable growth in their current businesses and affordably spend to build new digital businesses and mutual partnerships.

SME owners need motivational (inspiring business owners to embrace digital) but mostly informational (guiding SMEs on how to sell to hitherto unreachable customers) to access new markets, promote personal income of the ordinary citizen to stimulate growth and attract investors.

This partnership should ensure that SMEs are prepared to trade to benefit from the digital trend in a way that benefits every citizen, and this should help achieve Uganda’s Vision2040. Serving everyone, creating new jobs, opportunities, better incomes in this new digital economy.

Let’s visualise a quick example of the ripple impact focusing digital transformation on small businesses has on the economy. Ggonja (Roasted Plantain) normally sold by women (usually single moms normally called “Nnalongo” for birthing twins) on Kampala’s streets and upcountry highways.

Many office workers love Ggonja but they only get to taste it while travelling upcountry. What if we helped 100 Nnalongos around Kampala to innovate their product and process to serve office goers. For each Nnalongo you have employed 5 Bodaboda riders to deliver, 1 to offer packaging,  5 farmers to supply the plantain, 1 shamberboy , Airtime for ordering and coordination, 1 Environment Friendly stove, 1 to supply bricketts, quality management and others along the Ggonja value chain. When demand increases, farmers will need to start irrigation, acquire loans, etc. So that is around 1,500 jobs maintained by just the Ggonja value chain. So do this for roasted maize, Kigere/Molokoni (Cow Hooves), fruits, cakes, roasted goats meet, etc, the impact is just explosive.

Kampala City Council Authority (KCCA) has built Usafi market and vendors don’t want to occupy them mainly because they believe it’s location just doesn’t have customers. With e-commerce or m-commerce, these people don’t even need to pay rent, they can work from home as long as they are oriented in ensuring a quality product.

Potential Impact

Trade Impact

  • E-commerce is highly correlated with increase in trade volumes. — boosting productivity, spreading new technologies, and making products more affordable while creating millions of new jobs with higher wages.
  • Increased trade leads to specialization and increased division of labour. g. delivery, shipping, packaging, quality assurance and export coordination, clearing & forwarding, training and education, digital marketing etc.
  • Stimulates technological change by increasing domestic rivalry and competition and hence increased innovation.
  • Improvements in the e-commerce infrastructure and ecosystem allow the poor to trade more easily and profitably in domestic as well as in international markets.
  • E-commerce removes or reduces the impact of non-tariff barriers to trade.

Investment Impact

  • Facilitating a vibrant e-commerce environment has a positive impact on exports and increases foreign investor confidence in the market.

Employment Impact

  • E-commerce which increases trade volumes, division of labour, innovation and production directly increases employment which help millions move out of poverty.
  • A vibrant E-commerce ecosystem reduces income inequalities by lowering trade transactions costs in those sectors where employment of the poor is concentrated.
  • A focus on small and medium enterprises trade facilitation has an impact on income distribution and poverty through its effects on international trade, economic growth and government revenue.
  • E-commerce enhances trade-induced growth, which increases average incomes providing more resources with which to tackle poverty.

Export Impact

  • Exploiting market-access opportunities in the developed world requires an e-commerce strategy because consumers in developed markets prefer online orders. Sectors here can be arts and crafts, agriculture, online services among others. Studies suggest that an export based strategy of development offers the best prospects for economic growth.

Identity Verification: Is Hindering Financial Inclusion in Africa

18Google prides itself in building technologies that improve access to the world’s information by shouldering complexities for others to achieve their goals.

One neglected information problem affecting many sectors is Identity Management. Its negative impact is worse in the financial sector and the $726 Billion global payments sector that require strict user identity verification. Outdated means of identity verification have slowed financial inclusion in developing economies, frustrated customer-acquisition and on-boarding in financial, education, health, customs, government services, to mention but a few.

If my first bank or even better my National Identification Registration Authority already verified my identity, why does it still take hell for my next bank, online payments providers and services to verify me and in several worse scenarios reject genuine transactions?

Relatedly, I always angrily ask myself why I have to spend 1 — 5 hours filling about 5 – 15 forms (both online and printed) every month, each form asking me the same information, when I could just click to allow applications to securely fetch the bio information i approve through an API in less than a minute.

This market opportunity requires a strategic owner-managed technology solution that will make the future of access to and verification of personal information and identity an easier experience.

I co-founded www.elmot.ug in 2008 and recently founded www.varows.com. In both companies we help clients in Africa, Middle East & Europe setup websites including e-commerce businesses. In varows.com we go beyond setup and aggressively work with clients to make sure their websites produce actual returns on investment.

Challenge #1 in our works is  The Frustrating Payments Companies and their irrational transaction policies. Now, I know they have very strict federal or national payment regulations to comply with but I also know that with technology advances like Blockchain, ML, and AI, the key pain points of users can easily be resolved while remaining within regulatory constraints.

Above 6 in 10 of our and our clients’ payments pain-points hinge on Identity-Verification and unsurprisingly so do most payments regulations. This denies over $25 Billion genuine transactions. Each transaction denied is a life changing opportunity denied.

I believe the Identity Management challenge especially in developing economies is the missing link to massive adoption of cross-border digital payments.

Access to and verification of personal information determines access to several services that improve lives. A blockchain powered zero-knowledge proof solution to organize the world’s personal information and make it securely accessible to others especially for verification purposes is something i would love to work on.

From Paypal, WorldRemit, Banks, even the mushrooming Fin-Techs,  and now crypto giant Binance, and hundreds others, identity is still a silent show-stopper for millions of individuals looking to change their lives.

 

Why Product Management?

I attended a meetup on Product Management by ProductTank Which was Good for a start.

Didn’t have chance to respond to a question where someone asked how ReadyPay cops with many people sleeping at 7PM in Eastern Uganda.

I believe this is an opportunity in and of itself, because the more important question to ask (as a Product Manager) is; Why are over 4 Million households sleeping so early? The answer would be that they don’t have access to (or have not heard of ) disruptive products like ReadPay’s to keep them awake.

Technology is there to disrupt our behaviours with hitherto new opportunities. In Africa before knowledge, mail, telephone, cars, internet, etc, you had to hire a SWIFT runner to send a message to the next village.

And this is where good product management comes in as it it is the difference between winning & losing as https://www.kennorton.com/essays/productmanager.html says.

Extrapolate that, it is the difference between profit and loss, between adoption and rejection, between building a sustainable solution and a 1–9 year old company.

Most importantly to my Ugandan brothers and sisters, it’s the reason me and you have no more than 2 locally built apps if not none on our phones. It is the reason we still prefer western products right from the toothpick through undergarments to now Chinese building our roads. We have good engineers but we relegate the importance of Product Management.

 

UMEME contributing to Uganda’s Slow Growth

Naye UMEME do you need a PhD to know that 1 hour without power in business areas like BukotoStreet is worth over 5 days in village & residential areas. And it’s worth over 50 Million in URA taxes. On average you disconnect power for 40 hours a week, that is 2 Billion, 8 Billion a Month and a whopping 64 Billion UGX a year. Wait!! how much do our selfless Doctors, Teachers, etc. et.c. need to stop these daily strikes?

But you make sure power is on in low production areas and off (DMC transformers & other equip) in High production areas, more so during production hours. Sincerely when will Uganda grow. Let’s see how much we have lost in 10 years. 640 Billion. Bannange!!!

On average you need just 50 companies filling tax returns of 1 million. And in these areas there are over 1000 companies combined. And its not just filling but also a dense web of buying & selling of taxable products & services. All this is put on hold when power goes off.