After only two years on the scene, UangTeman, Indonesia’s first online lending service, which allows Indonesians in Jakarta, Bandung, Yogyakarta, Solo, Magelang, Surabaya, Semarang and now Bali greater access to quick and transparent loans, has become a lucrative business.
UangTeman chief executive and co-founder, Aidil Zulkifli said there is certainly a market to be tapped in Bali, with 35% of Balinese still not having access to mainstream loans.
UangTeman is one of a few local fintech companies who use a balance sheet lending model, which means it distributes funds from its own pocket instead of passing funds from individual or business lenders in a peer-to-peer business model.
“There has been a shortage of lenders in Indonesia who are actually responsive to the needs of their customers,” Aidil told the Jakarta Globe in Denpasar, Bali, on Sunday (05/02).
According to Aidil, many people in Bali who have little access to borrowing money end up borrowing from middlemen or loan sharks.
“UangTeman’s presence in Bali will make it easier for local communities to access the service, because everything is done online,” Aidil added.
In January, UangTeman launched their iOS app to cater to increasing demand and allow more access to the service.
“Our ultimate goal is simple, to make one-click loan available on whatever device or system you’re using and in a fair and transparent way,” Aidil said.
In December 2016, OJK introduced the first set of regulations for fintech lending in Indonesia, prompting big changes in the industry.
“There were no clear regulations on what fintech lending was all about so we have to be at the forefront of educating OJK about what is required for regulating online lending because we’re the first guys on the ground,” Aidil said.
According to Aidil, one of the biggest challenges in expanding UangTeman in Indonesia has been challenging the existing money culture.
“Indonesia is not just one country, Indonesia is many countries within one country; each city’s profile is very different from the other,” he said.
“We need to understand the distinctive risk profiles of each city, understand the money culture in each province,” he added.
Bali is the first city UangTeman sets its sights on in 2017 with Makassar, Batam and other cities in Sumatra to follow soon. It also has plans to expand to other Southeast Asian countries next year.