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One Finance Limited (OneFi), owner of online lending platform Paylater, has secured a $5 million debt facility to deploy more loans to customers, through a range of new products. The financial assistance is provided by Lendable, a technology-enabled funding provider based in New York and Nairobi.

“Securing this investment from Lendable represents the first internationally-backed commercial debt transaction for us, marking an important stage of our company’s development as we look to serve the “next billion,” OneFi CEO, Chijioke Dozie said.

The facility comes just two months after the company secured Africa’s first credit rating for a FinTech platform, achieving a “BB” Rating with a “Stable Outlook’ from Global Credit Rating Co. With this new capital, the company will now look to extend its services and double in size within Nigeria before entering new markets in 2019.

“As we transition into a full-service digital bank, this financing will allow us to execute on a number of new products. This includes our partnership with Visa, whereby we’ll be providing credit via quick response (QR) codes at supermarkets, clinics and on public transport,” Dozie added.

There are currently only 120,000 active POS merchants in Nigeria, with over 50 percent of transactions occurring in Lagos alone.

Leveraging the power of the mobile phone, of which there are 150 million active connections in Nigeria, Paylater is aiming to help millions of customers transact at their point of need, and drive offline payments via lower cost QR installations.

For Lendable, which provides credit facilities to consumers and SME credit providers in Africa, this investment in OneFi marks its first deal in Nigeria.

Paylater provides hassle-free loans and has transitioned to a one-stop-shop offering additional products such as savings, bill payments and credit reporting. Since its launch in 2016, the platform has deployed over $60 million across 750,000 loans, approving over 1,500 loans a day with an average of $80 per loan.

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