Economies of Trust

Why trust matters
Trust is the basis of economic and social transactions. When a buyer pays a seller using issued currency, the seller, in good faith, trusts that they can redeem value for the currency. We trust that the money we receive can be used to pay for other goods and services.  When a friend goes out to the movies with another friend they trust their friend will not harm them during the entire social interaction. Trust underlies most of our interaction.

I can’t imagine any banking services or financial services that don’t depend on trust. Trust has allowed the stock market to work and for banks to grow. Trust has facilitated world economies — however in some economies, especially the African market (in 50 years will be the largest consumer market) Trust has not yet been established.

The opportunity
Investing and doing business in Africa is often risky. Many Africans and non-Africans avoid business in the African continent. I know many Africans who by rule refuse to invest in Africa, and often for good reason. In Africa trust is hard to achieve, it’s often a social construct that takes lots of development. No one has found an effective quick way to establish trust. It is possible that the African continent is a multi-Trillion dollar economy — yet much of it can’t be realized or achieved simply because of Trust.  Establishing trust in Africa is a very huge opportunity. Whoever establishes trust for African financial transactions, goods and services will perhaps literally change how the world economy functions. The next millionaires and billionaires will use technology and social sciences to bridge the gap of trust.

Next Steps
I can’t claim to have all the answers but I think what’s needed now is ingenuity: Tools and Services that can make trust easier. Tools and Services to create smoother economic transactions.

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