SC Ventures, the innovation, fintech investment, and venture arm of Standard Chartered, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Yabx, a company founded by Comviva and part of the Mahindra Group, to address the deep-rooted need for responsible consumer finance and Financial Services (FS) in Africa.
Industry sources added that there are more than 700 million mobile wallets and about 450 million bank accounts in Africa. However, access to formal credit is still severely limited due to the poor credit infrastructure and the slowly developing risk appetite of financial service providers, mainly traditional banks. They also added that the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated digitization in the financial sector, creating a fertile environment for bringing new and disruptive products to market. The partnership between SC Ventures and Yabx is capitalizing on this to develop unique, Africa-tailored products that will improve access to credit for underserved communities across Africa.
Industry sources added further that Agile, cutting-edge technology, and data analytics combined with a deep understanding of banking will reduce the cost of delivering innovative lending products, thereby expanding integration into underserved African segments where it is needed most.
Given the scale and complexity of this opportunity, SC Ventures and Yabx have taken a collaborative approach to address this challenge. Using an innovative, data-driven scoring and analysis engine, based on extensive experience in African markets, loans are made to clients for specific purposes such as education and qualifications. These credit products will initially be launched in Uganda and later expanded to other African countries.
Jiten Arora, a Member of SC Ventures stated, “ We are excited at the prospect of using a data and technology-enabled partnership model to bring dedicated communities to life for underserved populations in Africa, a continent we know well and have a strong commitment to to provide credit. “
Comviva Chief Executive Officer Manoranjan Mohapatra commented, “ Yabx has experienced exponential growth over the past year and we will continue to invest in its mission to serve millions of consumers and MSMEs in emerging markets who have limited traditional sources of funding. “
Rajat Dayal, CEO of Yabx, stated: “ We have many synergies with SC Ventures in Africa and are uniquely positioned to create a seamless integrated finance experience. This partnership will fill current market gaps, drive digital innovation and bring significant benefits to Africa’s underserved population.”
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