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When Sydney entrepreneurs Greg Moshal and Beau Bertoli got sick of the long and arduous process involved in applying for relatively small business loans, they decided there had to be a better, more efficient way.
As a result, seven years ago they launched an online small business lending platform called Prospa and this week Prospa floated on the ASX, raising over A$100 million in the process.
Having lent over A$1 billion to more than 19,000 small Australian businesses in those seven years since launching, the two entrepreneurs opened up Prospa.co.nz for lending in New Zealand in late 2018, and have already lent over $NZ12.5 million to NZ small businesses in that time.
Speaking with #nzentrepreneur editor Richard Liew, Adrienne Church, General Manager of Prospa New Zealand, said that the company is looking forward to having as big an impact for New Zealand small businesses as they have for our counterparts in Australia.
“We’re a cofounder led business,” said Church, in reference to Prospa founders Moshal and Bertoli who operate as joint CEO’s.
“They recognised there was a gap in the market primarily because they had that experience themselves.”
Prospa has built their niche providing business loans of $5,000 to $150,000, with no security required for loans under $100,000.
But it is their streamlined “paper work free” application process and fast loan approval times that Church believes small business owners appreciate most.
Loan applicants can initiate their application online or by calling Prospa directly. A short interview with a Prospa lending consultant follows while Prospa’s intelligent risk assessment simultaneously pulls 450 data points from assorted data sources enabling decisions to be made sometimes within just 10 minutes of completing the application process.
“We know small business owners are time poor, we know they’re having to do a hundred things and wearing multiple different hats… for our process we really only ask 21 questions while we’re talking to them,” says Church.
Funds are then often available for drawing down within 24 hours.
With over 500,000 New Zealand businesses falling into the category, Church says the lending market for small and medium enterprises here is worth at least $4 billion per year and Prospa will be hoping to provide a large portion of that. A growing broker channel will also enable business owners to apply for funding through their preferred financial services advisor.
Supplementing their entry into the New Zealand market, Prospa will also be providing regular market commentary and thought leadership content for business owners here on #nzentrepreneur, starting later this month.