"Branch International, a fintech company that pioneered personal loans via smartphones, raised eyebrows early this year when it announced that it was buying Century Microfinance Bank.
The company’s majority acquisition of the microfinance institution regulated by the Central Bank of Kenya made it the first fintech to acquire a regulated bank in the region.
In a statement announcing the deal, the Central Bank of Kenya said the deal would 'bring financial services to the emerging markets by leveraging the power of technology.'"
Meet Branch, the paperless bank transforming financial service delivery
May 10th, 2022
"It might be called Branch, but this bank has no branches. What it has is a platform that delivers high quality, fully electronic financial services to anyone who has a smartphone in Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania, and India. Nobody knows exactly how much of the Amazon rainforest has been destroyed due to copious amounts of paper needed to carry out banking operations for centuries. Banks have traditionally always used a lot of paper. Transactions were recorded on paper. Account records were maintained on paper. Teller receipts, service request forms, account opening forms, and loan applications had to be printed on paper. Multiply this by the estimated 6 billion bank accounts worldwide and you get the picture."
Branch deepens efforts to revolutionise digital banking in Nigeria
October 22, 2021
"Branch International, one of the leading fintech players in the Kenyan market has over the years increased its user base across the region to more than three million. The acquisition of Century Microfinance Bank will allow the fintech firm to deploy more solutions to grow its digital and physical foothold in the Kenyan market."
How digital platform delivers unique financial services to mobile generation
September 1, 2021
"It has become clear that today’s fast-paced financial world requires banking services that can keep up with the demands of the digitally-savvy and largely-mobile generation. This is no longer a luxury, but an absolute necessity for all."
"Branch is that digital and finance platform with a core mission to deliver world-class, unique financial services to the mobile generation. That basically includes all who have access to a mobile device- such as you, reading this piece. Branch recognizes the need for a clutter-free and highly innovative finance platform to meet today’s unique financial challenges, and they provide just that; in a way that no one else does."
Inside Branch's 20 percent investment push to beat Nigeria's bank offerings
June 30, 2021
"When Branch launched in Nigeria in 2017, it was a single product company with a money lending license to offer loans to individuals. Loans start from as low as ₦1,000 (~$2) and increase gradually up to ₦500,000 (~$1,200) as the borrower repays. Four years, ₦40 billion (~$97 million) and three million loans later, the business is evolving."
Branch promotes financial inclusion via digital banking
June 14, 2021
"It said the product features included free and unlimited money transfers; free bills payment and airtime purchase; and a 20 per cent annual investment returns without any withdrawal restrictions.The Managing Director, Branch Nigeria, Adedayo Ademola, said, “At Branch, it is our commitment to keep up with our objective of leading the way in digital banking, in order to improve the financial wellbeing of Nigerians, unlock the greater potential within the financial services sector and promote seamless banking across the country."
"With over 23 million downloads, Branch has become one of the most popular lending apps in the world, offering two specialised services: Unlimited free money transfer (unmatched amongst today’s finance apps) and 20 per cent per annum investment returns, which is amongst Nigeria’s highest."
Branch International looks to dominate Nigeria's digital banking space
May 17, 2021
"What we are launching today is Branch as a full serviced digital bank. So now you have the opportunity to invest with Branch and get 20% ROI annually. We also have a wallet product that gives free transfers and zero comisisoned bill pay services"
Branch Invites Nigerians to compare and save, announces free unlimited money transfers.
May 10, 2021
"“Finding the best deal when it comes to your money can be overwhelming. We have made it simple. Compare our 20% returns and free money transfers to see how Branch is better than your bank,” says Dayo Ademola, Managing Director of Branch Nigeria."
Branch announces free unlimited money transfers, investment returns of 20%
May 10, 2021
"Branch has said its two new services of unlimited free money transfer is unmatched amongst today’s finance apps and the 20 percent per year investment returns amongst Nigeria’s highest. These new offerings complement instant loans of up to N500,000, free bill pay, airtime top ups, and other existing services found within the app. Taken together, customers can now use a single app to manage their money with unmatched value."
Branch announces free unlimited money transfers and Nigeria’s leading investment returns at 20%
May 10, 2021
"Unlike other investment platforms where the money is locked for a fixed period, our customers can withdraw their investments after a 24-hour period. Branch’s 20% per annum return is paid weekly. Investments through the Branch app are channeled into low risk financial instruments with capital preservation as the ultimate goal. Branch also forfeits its commissions to customers in order to provide returns that are amongst Nigeria’s highest."
Meet Branch, The Paperless Bank Transforming Financial Service Delivery
May 10, 2021
"With a rise in smartphone users across the globe, Branch is keying into a unique opportunity to build a customer-first financial product for people all over the world. There is no longer any need to jump through hoops or fill out endless paperwork just to get a loan. Very importantly, unlike many other lenders, Branch practices ethical debt collections and strictly avoids aggressive methods of collections like debt shaming or harassment of phone contacts."
Branch Announces 1 Millionth Loan Disbursed Since Launching App Two Years Ago
May 6, 2019
"Branch has seen unprecedented global growth, now operating in Nigeria, Kenya, Mexico and India. Users in these countries have downloaded the app over 5 million times. Also, Branch has now processed over 14 million loans worth over $350 million across these countries. Thanks to its sterling records, Branch has received over $250 million investments since 2015. Most recently in April 2019, the company announced a $170 million funding."
Following $170m investment round, Branch is looking outside Africa’s banking system to serve the unbanked
April 10, 2019
"But Branch, one of the prominent players in the sector, is making a move to change this, following a new global partnership deal with Visa which also comes with an investment from the latter. Apparently, Foundation Capital and Visa recently led a $170 million Series C investment round in the company."
Branch International partners Foundation Capital, Visa to raise $170m financing
April 9, 2019
"Branch International in collaboration with Foundation Capital and Visa, has announced a new global partnership and investment from Visa (NYSE: V) to raise $170 million series C financing for people unreached by banks."
Fintech start-up Branch raises funding for EM lending push
April 8, 2019
"Branch International, a Silicon Valley-based start-up that offers loans to first-time borrowers and customers without bank accounts in Africa, India and Mexico, has raised $170m in new financing. The deal, which is made up of a combination of equity and debt, forms part of a new alliance with payments group Visa."
Mobile Lending App Branch Partners With Visa, Announces $170 Million In Fresh Funding
April 8, 2019
"Fintech startup Branch International, which assesses creditworthiness using smartphone data, has raised $170 million in Series C financing and announced a new partnership with Visa. Foundation Capital and Visa led the round, which also included...."
Smartphone App-based Startup Branch Set To Operate In India
March 14, 2019
"San Francisco-based startup Branch International, a mobile app-based lender with operations in Africa and Latin America, launched in India this month. Branch offers customers personal loans from Rs 500 to Rs 50,000 through its Android app and is one of the..."
Mobile app-based lender startup, Branch International, enters India
March 13, 2019
"MUMBAI: San Francisco based startup Branch International, a mobile app-based lender with operations in Africa and Latin America, launched in India this month. Branch offers customers personal loans from Rs 500 to Rs 50,000 through its Android app and is one of the first..."
Branch wins AI excellence award at African Fintech Summit
December 3, 2018
"Artificial Intelligence sits at the core of Branch’s operational processes in its goal to deliver world-class financial services to its customers. AI allows Branch to leverage smartphone data to make lending decisions and eliminate the need for a collateral, paperwork, or guarantors. It also allows Branch to serve customers who are traditionally unable to receive loans from traditional financial institutions. As a result, millions of underserved customers in Nigeria now have an opportunity to access quick loans in minutes and build credit regardless of their banking history."
This young lending startup just secured $70 million to lend $2 at a time
March 28, 2018
"You don’t hear of many $2 loans in the United States, where $2 won’t buy you more than a chocolate bar. But in cities like Lagos, Nigeria, and Nairobi, Kenya, $2 has the buying power of roughly $40, making such 'micro' loans useful when you’re running..."
IFC to invest Sh309m in mobile phone microlender Branch
December 20, 2017
"Branch, a Facebook-linked mobile phone money lending app, is set to receive an equity investment of Sh309 million from the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to fuel its expansion. IFC, the World Bank’s private financing arm, says the..."
Branch Mobile Lending App Disburses 4 Million Dollars in Loans Monthly
July 28, 2017
"If you have never heard of Branch, pay attention. Branch is a mobile lending app, founded in 2015, that offers loans of up to Ksh. 50,000 through its Android app. The app builds a credit score of the user by analysing their M-Pesa usage and over..."
Tested By Adversity, Fintech Branch Emerges Stronger (And Better At Risk Management)
July 24, 2017
"Branch makes small personal loans to people in sub-Saharan African countries like Kenya, Tanzania, and Nigeria via their Android phones. Applicants download Branch’s app which scours personal data on their phone such as texts, calls..."
Lending Startups Look at Borrowers’ Phone Usage to Assess Creditworthiness
November 30, 2016
"A handful of Silicon Valley-backed startups are looking to revolutionize lending in the developing world, where banks are scarce and many would-be borrowers have no credit history. Their strategy: Show me your smartphone, and my app will find out..."