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Can issues with onboarding new borrowers limit micro-finance success?

Onboarding new customers is a popular topic for banks and insurance companies. Many companies have built technologies to identify the person seeking financing, yet in developing markets its fair to assume that the lack of digital data makes it more difficult to properly conduct KYC/AML and other checks necessary in today’s world. Take for example a company by the name of Trunarrative. This company has a host of technologies that identify the applicant. Besides being able to run the applicants name through a database, they allow a applicant to take a photo of their ID. They claim they can verify a person’s ID in over 200 jurisdictions. While i haven’t had the opportunity to check the locations they cover, I assume that in many countries where micro-finance is leading the charge, they don’t have the necessary coverage. As is the case today, most lenders in developing countries rely on a boots on the ground operation and most likely have multiple offices within a country. These offices require staff and the more offices the higher the operating costs for the micro-finance company. These costs are added to the cost of the loan. Wouldn’t it be easier to have an online application? A technology that can solve this issue is This company provides the lender with a module they can include in their application which allows the borrower to take a photo of their ID through their smart phone as well as take a photo of their face at the time of the application. The lender is then able to view both the photo of the ID and the photo of the applicant and to decide if they match. Technology is advancing and micro-finance companies need to be early adapters so that they can lower their operational costs and pass on the savings to borrowers

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