Hong Kong: Virtual Bank Airstar Launches SME Banking

Airstar, one of a select few digital banks approved by Hong Kong regulators, has announced SME banking services. AirStar states that following its launch in the summer of 2020 it has experienced a steady increase of both deposit accounts and loan customers and it is now expanding services.

Airstar notes that Hong Kong has approximately 340,000 SMEs, but these SMEs remain underserved. The traditional procedre requires extensive document review and background checks and Airstar will now provide these services in a virtual environment to streamline the process. The digital bank states this is an extension of their vision of “Bank with us, served by us”. Airstar Bank aims to offer more efficient SME banking solutions with better products and services powered by Fintech.

Airstar also has announced that its corporate banking services for SMEs have entered the pilot launch through the Fintech Supervisory Sandbox administered by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority. The pilot trial will seek to include SMEs from different sectors, allowing them to experience virtual banking services. The pilot trial now is open to 100 SMEs.

To encourage SMEs to participate in the trail, Airstar is offering all participants in the pilot trial a 1% p.a. interest rate for the first HKD 1 million placed at savings deposit account between the start of the trial period and 31 December 2021.

Airstar Bank also reports that it is developing a new SME loan product.

Ronald Iu, CEO of Airstar Bank, stated:

“We fully understand the challenges that Hong Kong’s 340,000 SMEs are facing. To address their pain points, we are launching our Streamlined Corporate Account service, allowing SMEs to open a bank account remotely and enjoy the benefits of financial technologies and financial inclusion.”

 

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