The Challenge: 1.7 billion people globally are under-banked or have no banking relationship at all. Approximately 1 billion more have access to a bank, but have no credit history. Lenders want to expand their market to include more new borrowers, but this segment of applicants poses a significant challenge to a lender’s ability to assess identity and credit risk. Prospective Borrowers without access to a bank, savings account, debit card or line of credit must rely on the informal economy of family and friends, cash-on-hand, pawn-brokers and moneylenders. These choices can be insufficient, risky, expensive and unpredictable. For the credit invisible or unbanked, financial access equates with an improvement in their overall quality of life, financial freedom, stability and, for many, fulfilling the dream of home ownership.
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