Colombian online loaner Finaktiva recently wrapped up a Series A round for US$9 million through debt and equity. Investment leaders were Triodos and Alphamundi. They were joined by Bancoldex, Aktiva, Bancolombia, Confiar, as well as some entrepreneurship-centered family offices.
Apparently Triodos was interested in Finaktiva because of its positive social, environmental, and economic impact in Colombian SMEs.
With this investment, Finaktiva will fund their operations, tech development, and staff.
Finaktiva is a digital credit platform for small businesses. As of its founding, the startup says it has funded over 400 early-stage companies throughout 25 cities in Colombia. With this recent round the fintech has reached US$15 million in funding after 2 years operating.
Perhaps one of Finaktiva’s greatest strengths is all their services are online. This addresses the problem of financial inclusion. Finaktiva aims to be a neobank for entrepreneurs. This represents a growing trend throughout the the startup ecosystem in Latin America.
Differentiators in loaning startups
The field is still wide open for financial inclusion in Latin America and fintechs that focus on credit loans to people. SMEs are more than welcome. Thinking ahead though, there are various factors that may make a difference as competition grows.
For example Finaktiva reports that it can approve a credit loan for an SME within five days. However, as competition gets more fierce speed in loan approval may become a differentiator along with other factors such as the interest rate, amount available and additional credit terms.
Likewise user-friendliness and the user experience are additional major factors.
Moreover, as startups cover ground in urban settings, the new final frontier will be credit loans and financial inclusion in more rural parts of Latin America. This will also bring about the need for further financial education of potential customers, which means startups should separate funds for this as well.