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Local Thai bank to co-develop innovative financial products and services

Krungsri Finnovate, the venture capital arm of Krungsri, announced that its investment in a Singapore-based ridesharing firm has now been completed.

In addition, a Japanese bank holding and financial services company announced previously that it will invest up to THB22 billion the ridesharing firm through MUFG Bank, MUFG Innovation Partners and Krungsri Finnovate, to co-develop innovative financial products and services based on combined customer insights to better cater to the financial needs of the ridesharing company’s users, driver-partners and merchant-partners.

In Thailand, the partnership between the local bank and the ridesharing firm will help Krungsri tap into a new customer base and also promote ‘sustainable banking’ through financial inclusion for populations among the new clients, the company said.

Specifically, the partnership will build on the ridesharing firm’s Financial Group’s pilot lending services in Thailand and Krungsri’s extensive consumer lending expertise.

The two parties will also co-develop new lending solutions for participants in the ridesharing firm’s ecosystem, including driver-partners and food merchant-partners.

The two will leverage alternative data and AI technology to build credit scoring models, and provide innovative lending products to serve the underbanked population in Thailand, the company added.

The leading app in Thailand and Southeast Asia currently offers convenient and digital everyday services such as ride-hailing, food and package delivery, and digital payments, to millions of users each day.

The President and Chief Executive Officer of the local bank stated that the ridesharing firm is very well-known and has become an integral part of Thai people’s lifestyle. Being a strategic part of the firm’s ecosystem, this partnership will enable us to render the bank’s innovative products and services to the company’s users, merchants and drivers, some of whom may be underbanked.

Linked to the bank’s ESG mandate, the partnership aims not only business outcomes but also economic and social returns, including employment creation and income distribution, which ultimately will lead to socio-economic development of the country.

The Senior Managing Director at the app’s Financial Group stated that the company believes in the need for ecosystem partnerships to efficiently serve the underbanked in Thailand and across Southeast Asia.

Together with Krungsri, the two will leverage the company’s deep customer insights with Krungsri’s expertise in banking to give micro-entrepreneurs and gig economy workers in Thailand access to microloans and other financial services.”

It was noted that the Krungsri Finnovate joining MUFG Bank and MUFG Innovation Partners to enter into a capital and business alliance with the ridesharing app will certainly strengthen partnership synergy in Thailand.

Through the co-development of alternative underwriting and credit scoring methods, such as behavioural data from both partners’ platforms, the two parties will jointly underwrite loans to the entire the ridesharing firm’s ecosystem, encompassing Users, Drivers, and Food merchants.

It was noted that access to basic financial services, such as lending is still out of reach for many micro-entrepreneurs and small businesses in Thailand.

The company has started to pilot lending services for its driver-partners and food merchants, and this new partnership with the local bank on data innovation will accelerate the firm’s vision to support the daily financial needs of all Thais.

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