Branch, the popular lending app, has today announced that it has received Ksh 350 million capital investment based on a commercial paper issuance that was arranged by Barium Capital, a Centum-owned capital-raising advisory firm. The company says this capital investment will help it expand its financial services and lending products in Kenya.
This is the second time the company has issued commercial paper in the Kenyan market. Last year, the company raised Ksh 200 million through another commercial paper issuance.
Branch is one of the most popular lending apps in Kenya issuing instant loans from as low as Ksh 250 through M-Pesa. The company has been around since 2015 and says that it seen exponential growth over the years and that it has so far disbursed more than $100 million, and has distributed more than 6 million loans. It currently has over 1 million users in Kenya and issues tens of thousands of loans in Kenya every day.
The Right Market
These are impressive numbers and just show how a huge percentage on Kenyans are not being targeted by traditional financial service providers. Most of these traditional service providers do not have products specifically made for such customers and this is where we see apps such as Branch come in. For small business owners or individuals who want small amounts within a short period of time, apps like Branch come into play. Since these services are instant, you do not have to sit around for hours to know if your loan request has been approved. This is crucial for that small business owner who may need money to restock.
“The rapid growth of smartphone adoption, paired with the affinity for mobile money has put Kenya at the forefront of the financial technology explosion,” said Branch Head of Global Operations Daniel Szlapak. “We’re proud that our services have seen such high adoption here and are excited to continue to build best-in-class products for Kenyan customers.”
Speaking after the successful close of the fundraise, Teresia Muthoni, CEO of Barium Capital said, “Branch has built an absolutely first-rate operation. We have been impressed by what they’ve been able to achieve so far, and we are very happy to have secured a seat on the Branch express train for our investors.”
What About Branch
Branch is a machine learning-powered provider of mobile financial products. The company prides itself into being customer-centred with fast, fair and flexible products. It does not charge late fees for those who pay late.
To use Branch, all you do is download the app and register through it and you are on your way to getting your first loan. Branch’s algorithms process thousands of data points to create personalized loan options in a matter of seconds.