GSMA Puts Spotlight on Digital and Financial Inclusion at Women Deliver 2016

LONDON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Mats Granryd, Director General of the GSMA, will be joined by a panel of
esteemed speakers for an exploration of issues surrounding the mobile
phone gender gap at the Women Deliver 2016 conference this week in
Copenhagen. In addition to Mr. Granryd, the session, “Accelerating
Digital and Financial Inclusion for Women”
taking place on
Wednesday, 18 May, 15:00-16:00, features the following speakers:

  • Her Majesty Queen Máxima of the Netherlands, UN
    Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for
  • Ms. Sarah Hendriks, Director, Gender Equality, Bill & Melinda
    Gates Foundation
  • Ms. Rachel Samren, Executive Vice President, External Affairs,
    Millicom Group

“It is dismaying that, in today’s increasingly connected world, women
are still being left behind,” said Granryd. “A significant gender gap in
mobile phone ownership and usage exists in low- and middle-income
countries, particularly in mobile internet and mobile money services.
Access to mobile is key in ensuring digital and financial inclusion for

The panel will highlight action that can be taken to accelerate digital
and financial inclusion for women and build networks for future action.
Closing the mobile gender gap will bring important benefits to women and
society as a whole. GSMA studies have found that mobile phone ownership
and usage can make women feel more connected and safe, provide access to
critical services and facilitate increased employment opportunities.
Further, providing women greater access to mobile can help achieve the
United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, particularly those
relating to gender, healthcare, employment, financial services and

The GSMA launched the Connected Women Commitment Initiative to reduce
the mobile gender gap in February. Through the Commitment Initiative,
mobile operators are making formal commitments to increase the
proportion of women in their mobile internet and/or mobile money
customer base in developing countries by 2020.

“The mobile industry will not be able to close the gender gap working in
isolation,” continued Granryd. “Deliberate action is required from all
stakeholders – industry, the development community, governments – to
increase digital and financial inclusion for women and deliver the
important benefits this enables.”

About the GSMA

The GSMA represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide, uniting
nearly 800 operators with more than 250 companies in the broader mobile
ecosystem, including handset and device makers, software companies,
equipment providers and internet companies, as well as organisations in
adjacent industry sectors. The GSMA also produces industry-leading
events such as Mobile World Congress, Mobile World Congress Shanghai and
the Mobile 360 Series conferences.

For more information, please visit the GSMA corporate website at
Follow the GSMA on Twitter: @GSMA.


For the GSMA
Charlie Meredith-Hardy
7917 298428
Press Office