Home Credit Philippines secures P2.25-B loan

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Home Credit Philippines secures P2.25-B loan

HOME CREDIT Philippines (HCPH) has secured a P2.25-billion loan as it eyes to aggressively expand its lending operations in the Philippines, the company announced yesterday.

In a statement, the financing firm said it has secured a fresh credit line from five banks operating in the Philippines, with the fresh funding seen to keep the company on track to hit its P12-billion target for loan receivables for 2017.

Citigroup Global Markets Asia Ltd. arranged the syndicated loan, which was sourced from Citibank N.A (Philippines), Union Bank of the Philippines, East West Banking Corp., Rizal Commercial Banking Corp., and CTBC Bank Philippines.

Home Credit provides in-store financing services for gadgets, appliances, and similar goods. The Prague-based firm started operations in Manila four years ago and extends financing services to those without credit cards and even to first-time borrowers.

Home Credit Chief Financial Officer Zdenek Jankovsky said the loan will be used to sustain the company’s “fast and aggressive expansion in the country” coming from a 1.4-million client base, and is “highly strategic” in terms of maintaining the “steep” growth in relation to borrowings.

The lending company serves some 3,300 stores in Metro Manila and 39 provinces nationwide, offering low-cost borrowings with minimal documentary requirements.

HCPH Chief Executive Officer Annica Witschard previously said that they are bullish on growing their customer base on the back of robust economic growth, a large unbanked population, and growing middle class who can tap Home Credit’s “competitive” interest rates.

HCPH is the local unit of Home Credit B.V., a non-bank financial provider based in the Czech Republic. The company is looking to grant as much as P12 billion in credit lines this year. As of end-April, total receivables stood at P5.4 billion.

Home Credit is the first non-bank financing entity which submitted loan data to the state-run Credit Information Corp., which is building the Philippines’ national registry of credit information.

Loans granted by non-bank firms offering quasi-banking services reached P148.158 billion as of end-June, surging by 28.1% from a year ago, according to latest data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. With the rapid loan growth among non-bank players, soured debts stood at P5.885 billion to account for 4% of total credit. — Melissa Luz T. Lopez