Brazil’s biggest consumer credit platform, Open Co has secured a US$ 115 million investment led by SoftBank Latin America Fund and joined by current investors, including Raiz Investimentos, IFC and LTS. The proceeds will be used to boost Open Co’s expansion plans, with significant investments in technology and product development.
Created earlier this year by the merger of the two leading consumer credit platforms in Brazil – Geru, Brazil’s first credit fintech, and Rebel, the first credit fintech to use AI to assess clients financial health – Open Co aims to finance consumption for Brazilians in a healthy way, helping to solve the country’s long lasting credit problem – Brazil has one of the highest interest rate spreads in the world.
Throughout the country, 52% of the population use credit to pay for basic expenses, creating an unsecured consumer credit market of US$ 200 billion, of which approximately 70% is in revolving credit with an awful customer experience and interest rates that are in excess of 300% per annum. As a result, more than 60 million Brazilians have overdue accounts or missed payments.
“Access to good quality credit at the point and time of need is the single most important obstacle for Brazilians to achieve financial wellness, increase consumption and create wealth”, says Sandro Reiss, Open Co’s cofounder. “It’s a huge market that is still controlled by incumbents charging extremely high-interest rates, which makes it difficult for people to pay back their loans. It is a vicious cycle; delinquencies are high and interest rates even higher. Our mission is to change that. We have the support of clients, regulators and investors, it is the perfect scenario to do so.”
“As the most experienced consumer credit fintech in Brazil, we are in a unique position to disrupt the market. Open Co built an amazing AI-powered proprietary technology, has a proven operational track record and a unique value proposition combining consumption, credit and financial wellness. With this investment, we will be able to accelerate our pace of innovation and growth, creating more value for our clients in a sustainable way”, completes Rafael Pereira, Open Co’s cofounder.
“We are very excited with the opportunity to partner with the Open Co’s team to improve the quality of Brazilian’s financial lives through credit”, says Felipe Fujiwara, Investment Leader of SoftBank Latin America Fund. “Open Co’s longstanding track record and differentiated underwriting provides better credit alternatives to consumers, for example by increasing access to those who have very low limits with high interest rates. At the same time, their solution offer merchants the ability to meaningfully increase traffic, order value and conversion. We are thrilled to support those efforts continuously”.
The company has helped consumers save over $500 million in interest expenses over the years and has been increasingly establishing partnerships with merchants, retailers and service providers to offer financing at the client’s point and time of need. Open Co has grown three times this past year and plans to grow even faster in 2022 with its buy-now-pay-later offering that is doubling in size every quarter.