Consistent with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, in 2015 MasterCard made a strong commitment to financial inclusion. Their pledge with the UN is to reach 500 million people previously excluded from financial services by 2020. Mexico, which remains a heavily cash based economy, was chosen by MasterCard as a pilot market for its financial inclusion initiatives.

To further these commitments, in 2017 MasterCard Mexico (the Company) launched a Financial Inclusion Pilot (FIP), working with local microfinance institutions and banks. The pilot aims to include more consumers in the formal banking system and encourage the use of electronic card based payments, rather than the traditional cash; in other words, to move from cash to cards. MasterCard Mexico asked the 2017 Capstone Team to assist the Company and its microfinance project partners in understanding the objectives and evaluating the progress of the FIP.

To understand what drives usage, the 2017 SIPA Capstone Team analyzed the financial inclusion ecosystem in Mexico through a stakeholder analysis, illustrated the benefits and challenges for different stakeholders in a cash-based system and a cashless system, and created a framework for increased inclusion and card use, with indicators relevant to specified business and inclusion goals. Together, these tools provide a landscape analysis of the Mexican financial inclusion ecosystem, and lay out a pathway for the Company and its project partners to drive and measure progress toward a sustainable and scalable program of benefit to microfinance institutions, their clients, and the broader Mexican community.