A unique solution to access small-scale consumer loans, this is what funds like Speedinvest, Kima Ventures, The Ark.Fund or Seedrocket4founders see in Finnu, which just closed its first investment round wor €700,000. This unique solution is, in the words of the Startup, the option to “pawn your mobile phone without giving it away”. In case the borrower does not repay the loan, Finnu restricts the use of the mobile phone, which serves as collateral. Finnu will launch in Mexico, its first market, early September.
In Mexico, the percentage of people who have access to traditional credit products, such as credit cards for instance, is very low. As an alternative, about 13 million people every year use pawn loans to meet their financing needs. This gap in supply has also attracted many microcredit-oriented fintech startups in recent years. However, the high interest rates and practices of the sector were always to the dislike of Finnu’s founders: Julian May, Piotr Godzinski and Ruchali Dodderi, who wondered whether there was another, more beneficial way for clients to access microcredit. This is why they came up with the solution proposed by Finnu.
Finnu will soon be available in Mexico’s Google Play Store with a completely different positioning to the current alternatives: pawn shops and online microcredits. Users will be able to download Finnu on their smartphone and request a loan of up to $5000 MXN, around 200€, using their mobile phone as collateral, and giving permission to restrict the use of the phone in case of default – all without giving access to personal data on the device. In less than 24 hours, the person will receive the money in its bank account. Finnu helps its users build up or improve their credit history which will allow them to access better rates in the future.
Speedinvest, Kima Ventures, Seedrocket4founders, The Ark Fund and two business angels from the UK and Bolivia have participated in this investment round. Julian May, co-founder, is very excited about the support of these important funds and the interest Finnu’s value proposition is generating. “Finnu has a solution to a real problem: the difficulty to access credit in Mexico. Even if you don’t have a credit history yet, we believe you deserve access to fast, secure and transparent credit that will help you grow” says Julian.
“Even if you don’t have a credit history yet, we believe you deserve access to fast, secure and transparent credit that will help you grow.” Julian May, co-founder of Finnu
Finnu’s launch is just around the corner. “The launch in Mexico is our first big challenge. Every day we get to know our future users better and think of solutions that generate a positive impact on their financial health” Piotr Godzinski, co-founder of Finnu. Various Latin American countries, such as Colombia and Brazil, are on Finnu’s roadmap, although as Piotr indicates, the focus now is 100% on Mexico.