Financial inclusion and telecommunications expert Topy Muga is one of the TechWomen emerging women leaders in Africa. In fact, The techie is actually a decorated financial inclusion and fintech personality with a very impressive experience in the digital world, spanning thirteen years. However, where did it all start?
Topy is actually an alumnus of Alliance Girl’s High School where she sat for her high school certificate and proceeded to the Jomo Kenyatta University for a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Information Technology and a Higher Diploma in Management of Information Systems from Strathmore University. The tenacious lady was also lucky to get a Nelson Mandela scholarship to study at INSEAD Business School in France where she received a Masters in Business Administration.
According to her website, Topy strongly believes that financial inclusion is the means to accelerating economic empowerment for the underserved populations. She advocates for greater access to financial services by all men and women, young and old.
In this regard, Ruth has been the M-Pesa Principal Product Manager at Vodafone Group based in London, England where she led M-Pesa commercial and strategy for emerging markets, product development and new markets launches.
Besides her expertise in financial inclusion, Topy is also a fintech expert. and her personal mission is to enable as many individuals and businesses around the world experience other ways to enhance digital, tech, and socio-cultural inclusion in achieving their aspirations.
She has spearheaded financial inclusion initiatives during her work in organizations including Vodafone and Airtel.
Prior to joining Visa, Topy headed Airtel Kenya’s mobile money business. She was a member of the Payments Association of Kenya (PAK) and the Mobile Money Association of Kenya (MMAK) steering committees whose objectives are to increase financial inclusion with assistance of the Financial Sector Deepening (FSD) Kenya.
Topy has held several roles in general management, strategy, operations, technology, and product and business transformation as well which have contributed immensely to her career journey.
Currently, she is the Senior Director for Financial Inclusion Africa at Visa, based in Nairobi, Kenya. She is committed to driving the growth in access to financial services for the underserved population of Sub Saharan Africa.
To add another feather to her cap, Topy was chosen as one of the ten women from Kenya for the TechWomen. TechWomen is an Initiative of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs fintech that brings emerging women leaders in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) from Africa, Central Asia, and the Middle East together with their counterparts in the United States for a professional mentorship and exchange program.
TechWomen connects and supports the next generation of women leaders in STEM fields by providing them access and opportunity to advance their careers and pursue their dreams.
During the five-week program, participants engage in project-based mentorships at leading companies in Silicon Valley, participate in workshops and networking events throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and travel to Washington, D.C. for targeted meetings and special events to conclude the program.
Topy is currently in the USA where she and fellow Kenyan women have just won a seed grant that will help them implement the digniti project that aims to improve toilet sanitation in rural primary schools in Kenya.
Apart from her role in driving financial inclusion, Topy enjoys and regularly participates in initiatives, conferences and events that seek to promote inclusion and encourage women participation in technology. Some of the notable ones include San Francisco International Women Entrepreneurs Forum (SFIWEF) in Spain, London School of Economics (LSE) Africa Summit in United Kingdom and Thought Leadership at the ICT4D Conference in Rockefeller Bellagio Center in Italy.