Home » Local digital lending user base witnesses 125-fold growth in two years

Local digital lending user base witnesses 125-fold growth in two years


By: Staff Writer

Colombo (LNW): Sri Lanka has witnessed a substantial increase in the user base for online loan applications across leading lending applications, Robocash, a leading legal and authorised online lender, revealed.

From a modest 10,600 in August 2021, the user base for online loan applications in Sri Lanka skyrocketed to 1.3 million by November 2023.

This is an exponential 125-fold surge in just over two years. “With an average monthly growth rate of 19.5 percent, this market exhibited rapid attraction of its target audience, showcasing consistent exponential growth without significant turning points,” Robocash said.

The online lender highlighted that these digital lending applications redefine convenience and speed in accessing financial services. Some apps boast lightning-fast approval times, offering innovative features and promising fund disbursement within minutes of application submission.

Others prioritise security through advanced fraud detection mechanisms, leveraging over 1,000 data points for risk mitigation.

Moreover, unique solutions like income diversification options are reshaping the lending landscape.

The growing popularity of these apps is propelled by their accessibility and inclusivity.

They empower users by providing immediate access to crucial financial information, interest rates and terms, allowing swift and informed decision-making without external consultations.

This accessibility has widened the lending landscape, extending financial solutions to underserved segments such as small farmers, women entrepreneurs and rural households.

Responding to regulatory gaps, the Central Bank of Sri Lanka plans to create a Credit Regulatory Authority, which aims to enhance oversight for credit firms, including digital lenders, improving industry practices.

“The growth of digital lending users is a reflection of increased trust in these types of services as a means to provide formal credit to the underserved,” said Robocash Sri Lanka Country Manager Konstantin Bereutsyn, commenting on the research.

He further echoed the reminder from the Digital Alternative Lending Association (DALA), of which Robocash is a member, for customers to solely engage with legitimate financial institutions for secure and ethical transactions.

Increased investment in technology by banks and financial institutions has placed the global Fintech industry at a value of over US$ 5,500 billion.

The industry’s growth shows no sign of retardation with the maturing of new technologies such as Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) and Artificial Intelligence (AI).

Further, the advancement of Blockchain technology in recent years has led to increasing popularity in Fintech’s latest development.

Dan Schulman, the Chief Executive Officer of PayPal anticipates digital currencies being the medium of everyday payments in the near future.

People are pushed to use a ‘contactless’ form of exchange due to the safety protocols in place courtesy of the global pandemic.

Despite holding a firm place in the future of the global banking sector, Central Bank believes that there are still unresolved issues for digital currencies.

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