Nigerian fintech company, One Finance (OneFi) said on Friday, it has raised a $5 million debt facility for its consumer facing platform, Paylater. The facility which comes from Lendable, a New York and Nairobi-based technology funding provider will enable OneFi extend more loans to customers.
A statement from the company disclosed that OneFi will also aim to double its size within Nigeria before entering new markets in 2019. The news comes just two months after the company secured Africa’s first credit rating for a fintech platform, achieving a ‘BB’ Rating with a ‘Stable Outlook’ from Global Credit Rating Company.
Since the platform was launched in 2016 by brothers Chijioke Dozie and Ngozi Dozie, Paylater has deployed over $60 million across 750,000 loans, approving over 1,500 loans a day with an average of $80 per loan.
“Securing this investment from Lendable represents the first internationally-backed commercial debt transaction for us, marking an important stage of our company’s development as we look to serve the “next billion”,” says Chijioke Dozie, OneFi CEO.
Customers of Paylater can expect new products. Dozie noted that a recent partnership with Visa is enabling the company launch its credit via QR codes at supermarkets, clinics and on public transports by the first half of 2019.
Paylater is hoping to disrupt the Point of Sale market in the country. Nigeria currently has 120,000 active Point of Sale (POS) merchants, with over 50 per cent of transactions occurring in Lagos alone. Paylater plans to leverage Nigeria’s 150 million active mobile connections to help millions of customers transact at their point of need and drive offline payments via lower cost QR installations.
“We are incredibly excited to launch this partnership with OneFi, a market leader, as we build our presence in Nigeria,” says Daniel Goldfarb, Lendable CEO. “At Lendable, we build financial products to enable lending companies to scale, and we are proud to support OneFi’s mission of providing credit to the underbanked consumer and SME segments in Nigeria. They are an incredible example of a company that has found product market fit in a massive market, and are working tirelessly to provide a best-in-class service to those customers.”
Lendable, backed by Omidyar Network, KawiSafi Ventures, FMO, and other leading institutions provides credit facilities to consumers and SME credit providers operating in digital lending, microfinance, and a range of Pay-as-you-go (PayGo) services. This investment into OneFi marks the first Nigerian deal Lendable has signed, and one of a handful of new Nigerian clients for the company.
Paylater provides hassle-free loans without need for human intervention or bias in decision making. The company has transitioned to a one-stop-shop offering additional products such as savings, bill payments and credit reporting.To-date, the Paylater app has been downloaded over 1 million times with over 1,575 loans approved daily with all applicants getting a free credit report.
In 2017, Paylater was one of three African startups selected to join the fifth class of Google’s Launchpad Accelerator. In the same year, the platform was also one of 20 finalists of the Ecobank Fintech Challenge.