Survivors

10% of India | 97 million people

skeptical, religious, conservative

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Watch Malleshwam's

Short Documentary

MALLESHWAM'S STORY

Meet Malleshwam

 

“When there was a drought, I didn’t know if I had enough for my family to have 1 meal per day.”

Malleshwam is a 58-year-old farm laborer living in Medak with his wife and daughter. His older son lives in the adjacent house with his wife and newborn. Malleshwam has never received formal schooling and has been working on farms since he was nine years old. He owns ten small portions of land, but they are distributed across eight locations and hold no monetary value. Malleshwam lives a hand-to-mouth existence. He has no fixed income and survives by borrowing small loans from larger farm owners within his community. He is never charged interest, as he only borrows from two to three farmers with whom he has a long-standing relationship. He only trusts a handful of people in the community. He uses all his money to meet his family’s basic needs, to clear outstanding credits of ₹ 1500 per month, and buy ration in bulk. He rarely has anything left over at the end.

Though formal financial services could help lift Malleshwam out of a relentless cycle of debt, why does he not not trust these sources?

 
 

SEGMENT OVERVIEW

Survivors,

by the numbers

Like Malleshwam, Survivors are mostly men who are farmers with very limited education and income. Approximately 97 million (10% of the Indian population) fall in this segment.

Survivors

India Average

GENDER (MALE)

65%

53%

AGE 35 OR BELOW

46%

32%

SOCIOECONOMIC (SES 1-3)

81%

58%

HIGH INCOME VOLATILITY

72%

53%

Survivors are the most financially exposed of the segments – they face considerable difficulty in raising funds to meet daily needs, especially due to volatile incomes. They are also the least confident in their ability to raise funds in an emergency.

Financial Behavior & Attitudes

SAVINGS BEHAVIOR & ATTITUDES

Survivors save infrequently and are the least likely to save with any type of financial service provider of all the segments.

SAVINGS ACCOUNTS

They have lower uptake of informal financial group channels due to their social isolation, and have a low uptake of mobile money due to low access to smartphones.

BORROWING BEHAVIOR & ATTITUDES

Survivors tend to borrow frequently and exhibit high borrowing dependability. Due to their financial vulnerability, Survivors seek out certainty over risk.

BORROWING ACCOUNTS

Like most other India segments, Survivors infrequently borrow using mobile services or in group settings.

Survivors

India Average

Explore our complete set of findings:

 

DESIGN OPPORTUNITIES

How might we create products and services

for Survivors that...

Provide

Guaranteed Returns

Help assure Survivors

of the safety of their

funds and offer low

volatility rates

Offer High

Flexibility

Enable them to build healthy financial habits even when they feel as if things aren’t going well

Prioritize

Safety & Stability

Alleviate distrust of financial institutions based on previous experiences (e.g. lost funds, financial fraud)

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 The Human Account is led, created and developed by Dalberg with Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, and funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

 

Local partners are Lagos Business School in Nigeria, Ashoka University in India, not-for-profit development finance company, Karandaaz in Pakistan, and research and advisory firm, Busara Center for Behavioral Economics in Kenya.