CGM’s digital finance initiatives focus on four main themes: States, markets, academia and end-clients, with a special focus on financial inclusion. Growth economies are experiencing a digital financial revolution propelled by an enabling ecosystem facilitated by governments and by digital and financial innovators. This has allowed unbanked communities and vulnerable groups to access formal saving, credit, remittance and risk solutions.  

Focus Areas


We collaborate with the government to provide policy, research,and advisory services to support the creation of a framework for a thriving digital finance market while providing adequate protection to the most vulnerable and to the system overall. Our product design and research focuses on the basic plumbing/the rails of a national financial system- payments, identification and record keeping.


Profitable firms are key to a thriving marketplace. Continued profitability is driven by innovation. We provide product design, research, and capacity development through  training to firms foster and help maintain their innovation leadership. Growth economies’ fintech infrastructures are anchored by small merchants.  This sub-theme is of special importance to CGM where we explore the factors critical to  small merchant productivity and resilience.

Economic empowerment of the vulnerable, especially women:

Access to financial services has an outsized impact on historically underserved vulnerable groups. CGM’s research focuses on evaluating the impact of fintech solutions with a lens of consumer protection


Impact of Video Know-Your-Customer (KYC) technology to improve financial inclusion in India

A thought leader, innovator and implementer of technology solutions. FINO enables end-to-end customer sourcing and servicing.

Segments of the population in low- and middle-income countries, such as daily wage earners or small business owners in rural areas, typically have limited access to formal financial services. Contactless digital payment technology could expand financial access for underbanked populations by reducing the need for physical banks and in-person services, which would also limit risky person-to-person interaction during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Visual Know Your Customer (V-KYC) is a completely touchless, artificial intelligence-based digital banking technology that scans the video and audio of customers’ mobile calls and processes the data to provide instant and remote authorization and screening of potential customers. The V-KYC technology can potentially onboard and expand payments banking access to new merchants and end clients, increase transactions through eschewing the need for in person authentication, enable the uptake insurance services and money transfers. The research team aims to evaluate the impact of a novel V-KYC product on the expansion of and access to formal banking in India. In collaboration with FINO, one of the largest payment banks in India, the research team will develop and deploy the V-KYC technology and through a randomized control experiment study its impact on financial and business outcomes such as onboarding levels, volume and breadth of transactions, servicing of existing clients, and access to government subsidies and loan instruments. The team will also survey individuals and business owners to measure V-KYC’s effect on respondents’ ability to weather the economic shocks of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Empowering Fin-tech Merchants: AI-Powered Interactive Information Journeys in Real-world Trials

Yixiang Xu, Rupa Ruchismita, Ganesh Iyer

In emerging markets, local merchants often act as financial agents, providing crucial access to banking services for underserved communities. By significantly reducing the cost of financial access, these fintech-enabled merchants offer a promising path for financial inclusion.

Access webpage here.