Kreditech Creates a “Digital Bank for the Underbanked”
October 2, 2015 Leave a comment
J.C. Flowers & Co. was one of several companies to invest in the German consumer finance technology company Kreditech to the tune of EUR 82.5 million in Series C financing. J.C. Flowers led the pack in terms of investments, with Peter Thiel and Amadeus Capital Partners contributing earlier this year. Kreditech is a forward-thinking technology company aiming to provide an integrated financial services platform that would become the “digital bank for the underbanked.”
“We are excited to bring these world-class investors on board who will support us in strengthening our integrated financial services platform, bringing us closer to our vision of becoming the ‘digital bank for the underbanked,’” said Kreditech’s co-founder and CEO Sebastian Diemer.
Kreditech moves beyond traditional financial services to offer loan processing to people who normally might not have access to traditional credit bureaus and financial services providers. Loren Felsman of J. C. Flowers, who will be joining Kreditech’s board, noted that the company is moving into areas other financial companies won’t crack for years in an effort to make the loan application process easier.
Kreditech co-founder Alexander Graubner-Muller has always had a fascination with algorithms and statistical data. An avid coder since high school, Graubner-Muller has tried his hand at a variety of algorithm-based companies and products, particularly those that offer investment suggestions based on user-specific data. These skills and interests came in handy when Kreditech began to focus on providing a simpler loan process. “There was not yet a technical solution to make this process fast and efficient,” Graubner-Muller said in an interview with Dataconomy.com. “We realized that this is a huge opportunity to innovate a whole industry and were confident that we can build an algorithmic solution. Our goal was to make a loan application as easy as purchasing something on Amazon, an ‘Amazon for Consumer Finance.’”
Today Kreditech works primarily in Poland, Spain, Mexico, Russia, and the Czech Republic. They plan to launch in Brazil next year. Current loan sizes are between €800 and €1,500 and are set to grow even further from the initial microloans the company started with, which ran from €200-€400.
“We view the addition of J.C. Flowers, Peter Thiel, and Amadeus as a major validation of our business model,” said Kreditech CFO Rene Griemens. “The company has now raised cumulative equity and debt funds of more than EUR 300 million, of which EUR 160 million are unused debt facilities available to finance further growth.”