Making better and informed financial decisions is the goal of everyone especially if you are constrained by financial resources. You don’t want to waste your money or investment on something that doesn’t yield the best possible returns. Most people in Ghana and Africa at large are unable to make better financial decisions simply because they do not have access to quality financial information, education, and advice. This is emphasized by S&P’s Global Financial Literacy Survey which reports that African countries score the worst in terms of financial literacy in the world. At a continent level, financial literacy in Africa is below 45%. The Report also indicated that financial literacy in Ghana stands at 32%.
The African Observations (AO App) is seeking to solve this problem in Africa, starting with Ghana. African Observations is a mobile app that helps Africans, especially Ghanaians make better and informed financial decisions by way of providing relevant financial information, transformative financial education, and engaging financial advice. By this, the app is tackling the root problem of low financial literacy levels in Ghana and Africa at large. The African Observations app is currently available on the Google Play Store after it was first launched on 28th of May of 2021. The developers of the app, Bethniel Financial Technology confirmed the app will soon be available on the Apple App Store.
During the panel discussion held at the launch, Norbert Dziwornu, a Product Manager of Bethniel Financial Technology, spoke about the relevance of relying on information in making decisions and spoke about how the African Observations app helps with that. He gave an example of this by narrating how in recent times, people have just jumped to invest in cryptocurrencies without really understanding how the market works only to end up losing huge sums of money.
Phillip Twum, a Chartered Accountant and Technology consultant, who was also on the panel made mention of how financial advice is needed in this ever-changing world driven by data. He spoke about how people can leverage on advice rather than hear-say to invest so as to protect their money.
The African Observations App is multi-faceted, everyone can have information from the app to help them make better and informed financial decisions. The app is organized into Markets, Advice, Media, Monthly Observations, and Rewards.
The Markets section gives users information about different financial markets and products such as Mutual Funds, Fixed Income, Currencies, etc. The Advice section allows users to gain advice from experts as well as experiences and opinions from other app users while the Media section gives users insightful financial content in the form of podcast shows, videos, webinars, news and blog articles for now.
The Monthly Observations gives a snapshot of financial markets and investment tips on a monthly basis while the Rewards section incentivizes users towards financial excellence by giving points which can later be converted to cash.
Mr. Edward Akani, the co-founder of Bethniel Financial Technology mentioned that the app has already been tested by over a 100 people and the team is currently working to build it further as the feedback received has been promising. He encouraged everyone to get the African Observations app from the Google Play Store to help them make better and informed financial decisions. He added that the app will be available on iOS for Apple users before the end of July.