David Darkwa has over 7 years’ experience in providing financial services to the poor. He started off at Microsoft Research, where he worked with the company’s Technology for Emerging Markets group to develop text-free solutions and test their viability among the rural poor in India. He spent the next few years driving the corporate and operational strategy of a major MNO wallet offering at a large national bank in Ghana, and afterwards leading a mid-size Ghanaian fintech company to launch West Africa’s first ATM multi-switch card-less technology. This technology provided a critical base for African MNOs and banks (including MTN, Airtel and Ecobank Group) to offer viable financial services to the poor.
Mr. Darkwa has developed and led the implementation of multiple digital financial services products on the African continent, and provided advisory support to global private and development organizations to pilot and scale digital solutions in the agriculture, health, and financial services sectors. He was the in-country lead for a two-year Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation engagement to scale digital bulk payments in Uganda and has subsequently consulted for a wide variety of Gates and UNCDF funded projects in Ethiopia and Uganda, focusing primarily on research, analysis and strategy formulation, and implementation support.
Mr. Darkwa focus areas include digital financial systems ecosystem assessment and scaling, technical solution build out and deployment, product management, and multiple stakeholder management. He has a B.Sc. in Management Information Systems from Ashesi University in Ghana and an MBA from the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia, U.S.A.