You might have heard a brand new website called Lendico making waves as they bring peer-to-peer lending to South Africa, promising low rate loans to customers and high returns for people willing to fund these loans….But how legit is the company?
What is Peer-to-peer Lending?
Also known as crowd-lending, peer-to-peer lending websites are essentially online matchmakers – they match people looking for loans, with investors looking to provide these funds and benefiting from the higher rate of return. The benefit for the loan applicant is that since the financial intermediary is cut out, they are likely to benefit from lower rates! And some investors with more risk appetite might fund more riskier loans that would not normally be funded by your conventional loan provider….
How does Lendico compare?
Lendico is the first real peer-to-peer loan provider to hit local shores – and it looks like the timing couldn’t be more perfect! With payday loan providers such as Wonga providing short term funding at very high costs, a cheaper alternative will be very welcome to local consumers struggling to keep up with the high interest repayments on their payday loans.
Even for customers looking to borrow larger amounts and having been frustrated by the conventional risk assessment or those with less than perfect credit scores might find a solution to their financial difficulties at Lendico.
And similar to online payday loan providers, the application process for a Lendico loan is handled entirely online and avoids any unnecessary paperwork and since you are in charge of wording your loan “project”, the final amount and repayment schedule is fully customised to your individual needs!
How much does a Lendico loan cost?
To post a loan project on Lendico is free, and the only charge is a once-off Lendico Fee of between 0.5% – 7% depending on your loan amount. This is however capped at a max of R1000!
In terms of interest rate, your rate will vary based on your credit history and other personal factors, but Lendico claims to charge between 7% and 21% as interest!
When you compare that to the 0.17% PER DAY (or a massive 62% effective APR) that payday loan companies charge, these charges appear to certainly represent a great saving to the customer!
Who’s behind Lendico?
If you still have doubts as to the credibility of Lendico, you should be convinced when you look at their impressive track histry and well-know backing companies! Lendico South Africa is part of Africa Internet Holding (“AIH”) and is backed by Rocket Internet, Millicom and MTN. AIH is committed to launching and running successful and vibrant internet ventures which boost the evolution of the African online culture and has already started well-know websites such as Jumia and Zando (online retailers), Kaymu (online marketplace), Hellofood (food ordering platform), Carmudi (vehicle marketplace), Lamudi (real estate marketplace), Jovago (online travel agency) and Easy Taxi (taxi booking platform).