August of Money

The Quest For #Cashless Society

By Mehul Desai
Published by LTP Studio

August of Money examines the ongoing evolution of cash towards a true Cashless transaction environment. Based on the premise that while cash has always been a state-driven public utility whereas cash-replacement is a private endeavor, August of Money presents a different approach towards building a true Cashless Society, connecting the dots between eCommerce, Big Data and IoT, proposing the building blocks for Utility and Usability, and speculating on how the ePlumbing for Cashless will impact everything from socioeconomic growth to national security.



You can also download the e-book for the current edition of August of Money on any of your favorite platforms below for $9.99. Visit this page often as we continue add new platforms where the e-book will be available.








The interactive book is available online on exclusively to LTP readers along with an interactive PDF download. Click on the “Download Interactive PDF” button above to enjoy the experience and content right here on LTP. You will have 2 options to purchase: The current version of the book (completed section I and outlines of sections II and III) is available for $9.99 and the the entire book can be pre-ordered for $15.99.


The AoM Blog

Articles and Podcasts Related to August of Money

The Secret Sauce

November 27, 2017 By : Mehul Desai

We have a historical basis for establishing that money – fiat, commodity or otherwise – is a state-backed utility. And for good reason! What is more important is the understanding and agreement that this has to become the basis of evolving cashless from cash rather than cash-replacement.
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Progression of FinTech to FinServ

November 6, 2017 By : Mehul Desai

Conforming to and simultaneously molding user behavior around new products & services for secure mobile transactions are critical for driving adoption. Ensuring that these products and services are built and deployed in such a way that they can continuously evolve to changing user behavior is a critical component for ensuring scale.
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The Disruption Hypothesis

October 30, 2017 By : Mehul Desai

M-commerce, given its relatively one-dimensional nature involving the consumer and a provider, is relatively easy to figure out. After years of trial and error, some of the challenges related to the technology for m-payments are gradually falling into place.Read More

Convenience & Security Alone Will Not Save the Day

October 23, 2017 By : Mehul Desai

Identity management, which encapsulates the issues of security and privacy, will be one of the most critical factors to ensure that secure m-transactions can successfully scale. Security of an individual’s data will have to become the responsibility of a trusted community, where the risk and rewards of accessing an individual’s data are stacked up for the consumer rather than against. Effectively, the issue of security will dovetail into the larger issue of privacy, and the key will be to find the right balance between disclosure and oversight.Read More

The Devil’s Advocate

October 19, 2017 By : Mehul Desai

The issues related to scaling new technology, specifically in terms of stress testing its availability and redundancy, are very well known to entities that successfully operate such products and services at scale. While this is a tried and tested field, and hence, has proven tools and methodologies; the factors that typically trip up most providers can eventually be traced back to user behavior. What the inventor would classify as an outlier or erratic behavior in a lighthouse customer may turn out to be its Achilles heel.Read More

What Can the Mighty Mobile Wallet Learn From McDonald’s?

October 16, 2017 By : Mehul Desai

McDonald’s, globally one of the most visible brands, has more than 36,000 restaurants in 120 countries and revenues of more than $24 billion. While we may ridicule the gastronomical sophistication of their menu and debate the nutritional value of their quarter pounder with cheese, there is no denying the fact that it is one of the world’s most popular fast food destinations. About 70 million people attest to that every single day.Read More

If We Ask The Wrong Question, We Will Get The Wrong Answer

May 20, 2017 By : Mehul Desai

When it comes to mPayments, the real question we need to ask is why are we still promoting a disjoint experience. The real solution cannot be about sliding high resolution images of cards and coupons sideways or flipping them around so they do a little jig, at least not while there are irate aficionados waiting to pick up their personalized cup of joe. Read More

‘Never Leave Home Without It’

May 11, 2017 By : Mehul Desai

Most definitions of the wallet refer to it as a pocket-sized case – typically made of leather or some fabric – for carrying money and cards. Historically, there is a broader interpretation where the money and cards can be replaced with articles of necessity, or as the classicist Campbell referred to it “a thing that you stocked with provisions.” Read More

The ‘Build-It-and-They-Will-Come’ Approach

May 6, 2017 By : Mehul Desai

Most mobile payment initiatives that have prevailed over the last two decades are of singular applications or essentially vertical services, initially providing a simplex channel and over time, a more bidirectional interactive channel between the provider’s domain and the consumer’s device.Read More

It’s the (App) Economy, Stupid!

May 1, 2017 By : Mehul Desai

In the world of m-commerce, vertical services were the first movers, and for the larger part continue to proliferate. Carriers enabled subscribers to top-up accounts directly from their phones. The next step was for subscribers to procure digital goods and services beyond airtime through catalogs, in some cases fronted by the carriers through their walled-garden network and in other cases through third-party providers. Read More

Is the Glass Half Empty or Half Full?

April 24, 2017 By : Mehul Desai

At the turn of the 20th century, less than 10% of US households owned a stove, or had access to electricity, or had a phone. It took more than 50 years for all three to achieve around 90% coverage. It took the car more than 70 years; the radio, refrigerator and color television more than 20 years; and the cell phone about 10 years to achieve similar adoption; mobile money has not achieved that dubious distinction, yet. Read More

The Key To ePlumbing Cipher

December 13, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

With the proliferation of mobile devices, the success of e-commerce has migrated to the mobile channel. The first step was to mobilize existing websites, effectively providing every e-commerce site with a mobile commerce extension. In addition to brick-and-mortar and the web, mobile became another channel. Over a period of time, it started to become obvious that the force of mobility was so significant that it had created its own paradigm. The expression mobile-first-strategy started to gain traction. E-commerce morphed into m-commerce, and with a firm presence in the real world, m-payments followed closely on its heels. Read More

Big Data Is the 800-Pound Gorilla in the Room

December 11, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

The beauty of transactional data is its transient nature, which can help augment more conventional static profiling capabilities to create high-quality dynamic profiles. It is still early days but clearly, the advantage the large networks have – social or otherwise – are centered on their access to large data sets. Their ability to analyze these datasets and link the analysis to services delivered in as close to real time as possible is truly priceless. Read More

The Illusion of Payment Disruption

December 10, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

There has been growing discussion over the past few years on the new transaction rails, and how the Internet has disrupted payments just like other industries. Unfortunately or fortunately, the payments industry is not that easy to disrupt. Every serious attempt that has managed to garner some scale has ended up either enabling the legacy infrastructure or leveraging the existing infrastructure, merely becoming another delivery channel for the last mile. Read More

The Infrastructure of Infrastructure

December 8, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

What will remain constant – whether we have a one-dimensional or multidimensional perspective of privacy – is the need to securely conduct transactions at scale; the need of a single-sign-on credential that can generate a multitude of tokens depending on the personalized transaction ecosystem, seamlessly traversing closed-loop and open-loop environments. Read More

Privacy Is Not Personal, Rather A Community Concern

December 4, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

There have been innumerable attempts to build a universally acceptable and scalable federated identity management system. A system that if and when becomes feasible will aim to replace all other forms of real-world identity superimposed on the virtual world, as well as become the single-sign-on or SSO across all digital assets. Viewed from the perspective of identity, all transactions – commerce included – become a form of identity exchange. Read More

Closed-Loop Credentials Vis-à-Vis Expanding Marketplaces

November 27, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

Buyers and sellers are two sides of the same coin; one would not exist without the other. If the ownership of an asset is to move from one party to another, what is absolutely imperative is that there be a seller and a buyer. Once the intent is established, the asset in question needs to be valued, and once the valuation is acceptable to both parties, an exchange can take place. Read More

The Utility and Usability of Secure Omnicommerce

November 18, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

What do cowry shells, shekel, dinar, krugerrand and Apple Pay have in common? They have aspired or are aspiring to be the global commerce enabler of choice. Some of them have achieved significant notoriety and some of them have gone on to set the stage for the monetary system that has now become the fiat world’s lifeline. The jury is still out on the last contender. Read More

Dire Straits’ Telegraph Road Has Come a Long Way

October 16, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

While the commerce world was going through a sea change, so was the world of access and devices; one shaping and impacting the evolution of the other in ways no one could have predicted let alone planned.

Read More

Advent Of E-Commerce

October 11, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

Anthropologists would rightfully argue that the first instance of some kind of an exchange or transaction was most likely before humanoids evolved into humans. As humans evolved into hunters and gatherers, and further into agricultural societies, what started with the barter of commodities – and eventually, other items of necessity – continued to gain complexity.

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‘Will the Real Slim Shady Please Stand Up’

September 11, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

There are many that profess the path of evolution from cash to cashless is through cash-replacement. Then there are those who knowingly or unknowingly confuse cash-replacement with cashless. The main reason for establishing this critical point of divergence is to establish the understanding that cashless is better evolved from cash, rather than from cash-replacement.

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Cash Is a State-Backed Utility – Part 3

September 01, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

The only reason cash works, as in everyone accepts it, everyone trades it, everyone saves it, and everyone bets on it – literally and metaphorically – is because the state backs it.

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Cash Is a State-Backed Utility – Part 2

August 14, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

The first recorded use of fiat money was in 1000 AD in China, which in form was more like a state-backed note. It wasn’t until the 10th or 11th century that fiat money gained momentum in China. First the Song dynasty, subsequently followed by the Yuan dynasty, institutionalized paper currency as a fiat of the state.

Read More

Cash Is a State-Backed Utility – Part 1

August 8, 2016 By : Mehul Desai

The year 1971 was a seminal one for the world of finance: West Germany withdraws from the Bretton Woods system, the US cancels the direct convertibility of the dollar to gold, the US dollar floats against the Japanese yen for the first time and John Lennon’s second album, Imagine, is released.

Read More

“Owning #Cashless”

September 28,2015 By : Mehul Desai

I recently was with a couple friends where I was asked a very pointed question – what would I like to achieve with Until then I had not put much thought into the larger purpose of August of Money; I did not want to be presumptuous. August of Money?

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August of Money Blog Post – September 14th 2015

September 14, 2015 By : Mehul Desai

While I still bump into someone every once in a while that admonishes me for not thinking about putting a credit card on a cell phone, for the larger part the proverbial cat is very much out of the bag.

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Introducing “August of Money – The Quest for Cashless Society”

August 4, 2015 By : LTP Team

In the second installment of our continuing podcast series, LTP is excited to present “August of Money – The Quest for Cashless Society”, an upcoming new book by Mehul Desai. Host Aditya Khurjekar has a free flowing

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When Can We Move From 2 Digital Transactions a Month to 10 a Day?

August 11, 2015 By :Amit

The digital money discussion right now is louder than it ever has been. Mobile payment companies are witnessing a slow but steady change in consumer behaviour. People are trying out Apple Pay and several other

Read More

H as Cash Replacement Gone From Being the Philosopher’s Stone to a Trojan Horse?

August 17, 2015 By : Amit

Cash replacement was designed to solve a problem; it was not supposed to be a bug looking for a windshield. It was supposed to be a transaction service, and possibly even more profound would be the impact of

Read More

ePlumbing Is What We Need to Build for a Truly Cashless Society

August 25, 2015 By : LTP Team

There are several enabling components that are required across all personalized transactions, whether they are for finance, retail, health, education or government. The components that should be considered by corporates

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LTP Studio presents “The Cashless Society”

April 21, 2015 By : LTP Team

In this first episode of our at home podcast series, “The Cashless Society”, we’ll try to understand “Cashless” as a concept and how it is different from cash replacement. With Mehul Desai as our special guest,

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This Is Perhaps The First Serious Move By Any Country To Go Cashless

May 8, 2015 By : Amit

In a recent podcast on LTP, Mehul Desai (of the C-Sam fame) told us,”Cash replacement is very different from cashless. And in our lifetimes, at least, we might not see a true cashless world.” The buzz these days is

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Are We Really 5000 Years Away From a True #Cashless Society? [Podcast]

August 11, 2015 By : LTP Team

In the third installment of our continuing podcast series, “August of Money – The Quest for Cashless Society”, host Aditya Khurjekar has an insightful conversation with special guest Joe Hurley of Discover Financial

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Importance of the 2nd Largest Remittance Network for the Financially Underserved and its Potential for the Last-Mile in a “Cashless” Society

August 19, 2015 By : LTP Team

In the fourth installment of our continuing podcast series, “August of Money – The Quest for Cashless Society”, host Aditya Khurjekar has an in-depth discussion with special guest Sudhir Shetty of UAE Exchange

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The Emergence of the Internet-of-Things and Big Data – August of Money Podcast

August 26, 2015 By : LTP Team

In June 2015, we published the news that a UK-based international remittance FinTech company, Currency Cloud, raised $18 Million in Series C to expand in the U.S. We have followed this

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