Home Startups Here’s how Kenya’s Paylend is helping MSMEs with data tracking and loan access.

Here’s how Kenya’s Paylend is helping MSMEs with data tracking and loan access.

by Weddy Thuranira
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Paylend, a Kenyan fintech startup that helps SMEs better record data and access loans, is undertaking market research in Tanzania and Nigeria ahead of beta tests in those countries.

Paylend was founded in 2019 by Bendon Murgor and Eliutherius Juma with the goal of digitizing the manual, black book data recording that MSMEs have traditionally employed.

The loss of the book or tampering with records causes a schism in the firm, resulting in strained relationships and a significant loss of revenue. This is the most significant issue that Paylend seeks to address.

Due to insufficient recordkeeping of daily transactions, most MSMEs in Africa endure stunted growth. Paylend identified a culture in the African market where retailers extend credit to their clients and expect them to pay back within a week or month. The shops are usually tipped by these consumers. These transactions are recorded on paper in the stores, which is a time-consuming and inconvenient procedure. Paylend plans to digitize this procedure and include the shops’ cash payments transactions, allowing them to better grasp their true value and expand based on precise data.

Paylend gives business owners access to proper transaction documentation, making them bankable and providing them with a comprehensive credit management system.

Paylend is more of a complement to other financial products than a competitor because it provides data that can help other stakeholders make better decisions and drive more revenue.Banks, for example, can use Paylend’s data to identify potential loan recipients. Additionally, insurance companies might design policies to cover the credits that stores provide to their consumers for a monthly cost.

The startup has approximately 6,500 customers in Kenya who use its mobile app and USSD to access goods and services or redeem certificates. It has now onboarded over 2,000 locations. The startup is actively working on extending to new markets, charging a percentage of a customer’s subscription cost to a retailer, as well as withdrawal fees and commissions.

Nigeria, Tanzania, South Africa, and Zambia are among the countries that Paylend intends to expand. In preparation for a beta test in the fourth quarter of 2021, the business is already conducting surveys in Tanzania and Nigeria. Paylend will be active in three markets by the end of 2022: Kenya, Tanzania, and Nigeria.

This expansion will leverage the power of Adalabs, Paylend’s incubator, being present in these markets. The startup is also in the process of engaging venture capitalists to fund a seed round in the coming months.

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