Monique Baars is the founder of Fineazy, a mobile service designed to teach consumers about financial concepts, such as banking services, loans, insurance and investment. With Africa having one of the lowest average financial literacy rates in the world at 31%-40%, Fineazy is building financial capability and trust using tailor-made content, local storytelling, personalized learning journeys and an AI-powered chatbot. It is a simple yet powerful solution that is relevant and accessible to the African context and fits seamlessly into daily communication on SMS, Messenger or WhatsApp.
She is also a Director of ClickMaths, an organization founded on the belief that the best way to improve South Africa’s struggling education system is through the use of freely available, open-source technology. They collaborate with like-minded organizations to make education accessible and more effective for all
Monique is from South Africa and has a Bachelor of Business Science: Finance and Accounting and a Masters in Investment Management from the University of Cape Town. She spent two years as a Management Consultant with The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) working in South Africa, Botswana, France, Bahrain and Kuwait and as a Financial Inclusion Consultant with CARE working in Tanzania and Kenya.
She is a Fellow of the Allan Gray Orbis Foundation which invests in the education and development of individuals with entrepreneurial potential within Southern Africa. She was selected as a Harambean Oppenheimer Fellow in 2019, recognized as the best financial literacy solution by the WEF and was the winner of the DataHack4FI event in Ghana
Monique is also an African innovator who has been admitted to the Harambe Entrepreneur Alliance. The Harambeans network has existed since 2007 and has supported African professionals around the world with mentors, feasibility study grants, scholarships, pro bono legal services, and access to venture capital. It supports visionaries who mostly set up purpose-led startups to promote social change.
The network works in partnership with Fortune 500 companies and Ivy League universities, and their efforts have been commended by many across the globe, including the Queen of England, Barack Obama and Mark Zuckerberg.