Small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) in South Africa now have a new platform from which to apply for loans following the launch of Telkom Lend on Thursday (18 August).
Telkom Business said the new service will offer business loans starting from R20,000 up to R5 million, with applications receiving an outcome within 24 hours.
How Telkom Lend works
According to Telkom Business, Telkom Lend is an end-to-end digital platform that requires no paperwork, no long queues and minimal waiting time for a response from financial institutions.
“Business funding from Telkom Lend will ensure that small businesses are able to scale and grow with fast funding without the need to put up any collateral,” Telkom Financial Services managing executive Sibusiso Ngwenya explained.
“This also means that businesses take control of their payments. With funding offers ranging from R20,000 to R5 million depending on monthly turnover, funding can be paid back over three to twelve months on a daily or weekly basis, depending on the business cash flow.”
The platform has an automated scoring model to adjudicate applications. Once an application is approved, funds will be paid into the nominated account within 24 hours. Businesses will not incur penalties for settling outstanding balances earlier, but will instead qualify for discounts.
Minimum eligibility requirements
The following are the minimum requirements for a business to be eligible for Telkom Lend loans:
- Ownership of at least six months.
- Have a trade history of at least three months.
- Have a monthly turnover of at least R30,000.
- Businesses do not need to have a relationship with Telkom Business to apply.
“Data is used to review the creditworthiness of businesses and speed up the funding process. The combination of technology and data analytics not only provides funding for businesses but is also driving financial inclusion while supporting economic growth,” Ngwenya added.
How to apply
To apply, business owners need to visit the Telkom Business Funding portal and either sign up or log in. They will then be guided through an online application process.
“This funding is unsecured, adaptive and fast which means you don’t require any collateral,” Telkom Business states on its website.
Telkom is the latest mobile operator in South Africa to venture into the business lending space. In June last year, Vodacom launched the VodaLend | Business Cash Advance, which offers short-term loans of between R3,000 and R350,000 to SMMEs.
Vodalend provides the cash advances to customers using VodaPay point of sale (POS) devices.