Nairobi, Kenya - “The thing we have in common here is this crazy belief that we can do what banks with a hundred times the amount of money have not been able to figure out how to do and change the way that credit works to consumers and SMEs in sub-saharan Africa,” - Daniel Goldfarb
The Africa SME Finance Forum last week focused on using digital technology to create new avenues for financing SMEs. We believe that alternative lenders play a huge role in making increased access to finance a reality. But like SMEs and individuals they support, alternative lenders also need access to finance.
At Lendable, we use technology to bridge the gap between alternative credit investors and high growth alternative lenders in Africa. Building onto the themes of the SME forum, we brought together investors and alternative lenders for our latest industry event for the alternative credit space. Focusing the discussion on raising capital, alternative lenders and investors discussed challenges of raising capital, especially at the early stage, and offered best practices for working with investors.
“The financial landscape is very fragmented. So for companies like us, and for many in the alternative lending space, it’s very difficult to find the right partners. It’s often by word of mouth, so what’s really very helpful is to get a market map of who’s doing what, and know exactly who’s where and who’s interested in what kind of investment. And this session here this morning is maybe the first step of creating such a marketplace.” Maarten Susan, East Africa Regional Director, FACTS Africa.
A big thank you to our co-conveners at Apis Partners, our investors from Omidyar and KawiSafi, and all the investors and alternative lenders who joined us.