Talino Venture Studios and Chemonics International, a sustainable development firm, have launched and seed-funded Higala, a startup Inclusive Instant Payment System (IIPS) in the Philippines.

As an IIPS, Higala will serve as a financial superhighway that will connect rural banks and microfinance institutions that are currently excluded from payment networks because of high switching and on-ramp costs.

Higala President and CEO Vice Catudio said:
“Higala will help modernise our country’s digital financial infrastructures and enable the participation of financial institutions through our network. Our goal is to make banking more inclusive, especially to the underserved segments of the population that have limited access to traditional banking services.

“Through Higala’s open payment platform and suite of solutions, we will enable new market players to aggressively develop and market innovative payment services to both consumers and merchants. This includes integrating solutions such as regulatory technologies like e-KYC and AML-TF monitoring, AI-based risk detection and management, banking microledgers, payment hub that will enable instant fund transfer across participating banks, and a global transaction gateway for remittance.”

Higala promotes inclusion by lowering the cost of real-time payments

These real-time payments help financial institutions to reasonably price their instant payments. It also aims to provide inclusive financial solutions to the underbanked as well as rapidly enable merchants to accept digital payments.

Higala is also building a core instant payment technology that can accommodate financial institutions of all sizes and turn banks into digital banks through white label app services.

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Talino CEO Winston Damarillo, added: “At Talino, we are committed to the sustainable execution of development that benefits all stakeholders, especially the unbanked. “With Talino and Chemonics providing funding for Higala, we bring together the impact of venture investing and global good to expand the benefits of financial inclusion to segments that need them most.”