KENYA – Standard Chartered Kenya, a commercial bank, has launched a lending mobile app for its clients to meet the growing demand for short-term unsecured loans easily disbursed through mobile wallets.

Known as SC Juza, the 100% digital product allows clients to borrow between KES 1,000 to KES 100,000 (US$7.72-772) with a two-month repayment period.  

Interest will only be charged on the days the loan is held, enabling clients to benefit from early repayments. 

SC Juza represents the continued evolution of our digitization strategy. We hope to expand on the gains we have seen in our market with mobile lending products by offering a comprehensive solution that is highly inclusive,” said Kariuki Ngari, MD & Chief Executive Officer, Kenya and Africa for Standard Chartered.

SC Juza will also allow our clients to borrow with dignity, in line with our ambition to uplift participation in the financial ecosystem for the underserved.” 

Over the last month, SC Juza has been offered to a small segment of customers to enable testing and feedback. Initial use indicates that over 13,346 clients have attempted to register on the App, with 88 percent being able to secure loans. The average loan ticket size secured is KES 10,000 (US$77.2).

Users will need to download the SC Juza App, allowing them to access credit upon meeting minimal requirements such as a proven track record of loan repayments and a six-month M-PESA subscriber history. Loan requests will be processed and disbursed speedily into clients’ mobile wallets.

The App will provide users full transparency regarding loan service charges to ensure clients can access transparent and inclusive service. 

The processing fee for each approved application is set at 5.5%, and the loan interest rate is 1.6% per month.

To further assist borrowers, the loan tenure is 60 days (approximately two months), providing an extended period for consumers to fulfill their financial obligations without the stress of immediate repayment. 

Notably, the service fee is applied only after the first 30 days, adding a layer of flexibility for early repayments. 

Moreover, interest is accrued daily, meaning that each day adds a small, calculated interest amount to the individual’s outstanding balance, ensuring that the cost of borrowing is clear and accumulative.

The bank has implemented several measures within the lending app to safeguard consumers from fraud, leveraging built-in technology. 

These measures include technology specifically designed to detect SIM swaps, verify identities through the Integrated Population Registration Services (IPRS), and confirm with Safaricom that a number is legitimate and has been registered for more than six months. Additionally, the app incorporates checks with Credit Reference Bureaus to enhance security further.

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