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Fintech – funding SMEs smartly

Article provided by Pollen Finance

Small businesses contribute significantly to the economic and social development of South Africa by not only bringing innovation and change, but also by helping to alleviate poverty by means of job creation.

This sector however needs to be nurtured in order to overcome the bigger economic challenges we face as a country. Numerous research surveys done amongst SMEs has shown that the single biggest challenge to small businesses is access to funding. Money that can be used to fund growth through acquisition of equipment, stock purchases, new product development, partnership buyouts and many other opportunities.

Enter fintech.

Fintech, which stands for financial technology, can be described as an emerging tech sector that focuses on delivering better products and services than the traditional financial institutions. This is achieved by making financial services more easily accessible to the consumer and at a reduced cost.

Referring to this sector, Michael Jordaan, former FNB CEO said, “It is important to understand that one of the big benefits that small start-ups have is relative freedom from bureaucracy and an ability to move very fast.”

Global investment in the fintech sector grew from $930 million in 2008 to $17.4 billion in 2016 (Forbes).

The University of Cape Town will launch a fintech degree in Jan 2018 – the first in the continent to do so and indicative of how they foresee the future growth of this category.

The good news for small businesses is that this growing competitive advantage that fintech holds, has, over recent years, seen the emergence in South Africa of numerous players following the global trend.

“We understand the frustration of SMEs when it comes to raising capital for business growth. Traditional channels are cumbersome and with sophisticated back end technology, funding can be provided within just a few days,” says Louis du Plessis, CEO of Pollen Finance- SA’s leading fintech loan provider with loans in excess of R400 million in just 2 years. It is believed that the value of the market in South Africa is worth a potential R180 billion.

Companies like his are changing the way businesses borrow. Revolutionary technologies are constantly invading the space serviced by traditional providers making it easier and faster to access much needed growth capital.

No one borrows money without determining the risk factor and the digital age allows quick access to numerous sources of credit vetting. Modern banking allows for easily acquired, online statements. SARS statements of account are accessible through their eFiling platform.  Credit checking companies such as Windeed and Compuscan, are just a few clicks away.

This access to information allows the lenders to make fast and responsible business decisions. Now businesses can be funded within a matter of days with a lot less stringent criteria. With no physical meetings needed, the whole application process can be done online from the comfort of one’s office using your mobile phone, laptop or tablet.

Financing has never been easier

Pollen Finance is an online business loans provider – for fast, easy access to business funding go to

Pollen Finance is a proud Partner of the NSBC.