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Posted: 17 Feb 2009 07:14 AM PST
The GSMA, a worldwide consortium of mobile industries, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (owned by the guy who used to run Microsoft and his lady wife) have teamed up to found the the Mobile Money for the Unbanked (MMU) initiative, allowing folks in developing countries to carry out mobile banking from their non-smartphones and keep and grow their money in a safe and affordable fashion. The Foundation has donated $12.5 million to the endeavor and is currently working to "catalyze a new wave of mobile money innovation" and will support 20 projects in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The ultimate goal? Supply 20 million unbanked people with mobile financial services by 2012.