Samsung Invests in Funding Societies, a Marketplace Lending Platform

Funding Societies has received an investment from Samsung Venture Investment Corporation, according to a note from the Fintech.  Details on the investment were not disclosed. Samsung Venture is an investment arm of the South Korean conglomerate, Samsung Group, and has been an active investor in the Fintech sector.

“We are honoured to work with Samsung as an investor, as we find them a strategic and collaborative partner, in our journey to enable growth for SMEs and create wealth for lenders. We will continue to strive to be a digital finance provider of choice and to make a positive impact in our home countries across Southeast Asia,” said Kelvin Teo, Co-Founder and Group CEO of Funding Societies and Modalku (Indonesia).

A Samsung Ventures representative said they are focused on investing in companies at the forefront of innovative technology. Funding Societies’ digital financing solutions effectively bridge the SME credit gap in Southeast Asia and “we are confident that they will continue to lead the region’s digital lending industry and finance the future of these economies.”

Funding Societies is an Asian digital financing platform based in Singapore. The backing from Samsung follows earlier investments from Sequoia India, Softbank Ventures Asia Corp, SG Innovate, BRI Ventures, Qualgro Partners and Endeavor amongst others.

Funding Societies also announced that it has raised credit lines from Asian and European financial institutions to further support small and medium-sized enterprises. Funding Societies and Samsung Ventures, along with Samsung Life Insurance Co., will create a new strategic alliance to introduce prospective partnerships and collaborations.

Beyond boosting its executive bench, Funding Societies said the funds raised will be channeled towards developing the firm’s strategic and new business models in its next stage of evolution, driving its vision of financial inclusion for SMEs in Southeast Asia.

Funding Societies was founded by Teo and Reynold Wijaya in 2015, is an SME digital financing platform that connects SMEs in Singapore, Indonesia, and Malaysia with both retail and institutional lenders.

As of November 2020, Funding Societies reports facilitating more than SGD$ 1.8 billion via 3.3 million loans. The platform has also increased its individual lender base to 200,000 in just over 5 years of operation. Funding Societies seeks to fill the SME funding gap in Southeast Asia – a gap that is estimated at USD $350 billion.

Recently, FS Capital, part of the Funding Societies Group, was amongst the first Fintechs to be included as a Participating Financial Institution (PFI) in Enterprise Singapore (ESG)’s Enterprise Financing Scheme.

Funding Societies has also received an exemption from Singapore’s Ministry of Law to provide loans to sole proprietors.

Funding Societies has also received a tax exemption whereby interest returns for its platform investors will not be taxable from 2020 onwards.

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