FinTech: ZestMoney Launches Buy-Now-Pay-Later Offers For Apple Products In India
“No credit card, debit card, or credit score required.”
Lizzie Chapman, CEO and Co-Founder at ZestMoney, said in a LinkedIn post that her company had partnered with Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) to “drive affordability in India.” Though premium products, such as those from Apple had so far remained out of reach for India’s price-sensitive consumers, that would change now, Chapman wrote.
Through the nation-wide, omnichannel tie-up with the iPhone manufacturer, ZestMoney has launched a range of specially designed financing schemes for all consumers aspiring to buy Apple products. The offers are open even to those new to credit.
ZestMoney is based in Bangalore, India. Lizzie Chapman, Priya Sharma (CFO/COO), and Ashish Anantharaman (CTO) founded the credit startup in 2015.
The company focuses on India’s underbanked population, millions of whom do not yet have a credit card and, therefore, any credit history. Only three people out of 100 have a credit card.
Using AI, other data points, and the borrower’s record with ZestMoney, the fintech helps the customer build a credit profile.
It aims to offer zero cost EMIs (Equated Monthly Instalments), zero processing fees, and cardless credit approval in a matter of minutes.
How ZestMoney Works
Customers complete a digital KYC (Know-your-Customer) to qualify for a credit limit from ZestMoney’s financing partners. Thereafter, the customer can pick a merchant, select a product, select a repayment term, and complete the purchase. The whole process is completely online and digital.
ZestMoney’s Apple BNPL solution
The COVID-19 pandemic and overnight switch to “work-from-home” or “learn-from-home” have led to a sharp surge in demand in India for electronic products such as tablets, laptops, and PCs.
The range of Apple’s products such as Apple watches, iPads, and MacBooks have become more affordable for Indian consumers if they can pay for them in deferred installments.
ZestMoney’s BNPL offer includes various “Zero-cost” EMI schemes that even people with limited or zero credit history can avail of.
Chapman said, according to The Economic Times: “We are so excited that ZestMoney can power the dreams of Apple customers to afford their favorite Apple products. We are seeing a huge demand for iPhones, iPads, MacBooks, and smartwatches at this time. The popularity of Buy Now, Pay Later is playing out strongly for this premium category as people plan their finances better to make the most of their income in these difficult and uncertain times. Excitingly, we are seeing significant demand coming from Tier II and III cities, where we expect to drive significant growth in Apple ownership. We expect the demand to double during the festive season.”
Indian fintech scene
A recent report from McKinsey & Company and Matrix Partners India said fintechs are now a critical constituent of the financial services in India, having pioneered several innovations that have boosted access and penetration of financial products.
However, the report said the pandemic had adversely affected the prospects of fintech lenders in India.
“Lending has been significantly impacted by the pandemic (short-term confidence index of -25),” according to the report. “However, most respondents remain bullish in their long-term outlook with a confidence index score of 65.”
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