"Being tailored, human, and simple": How a fintech topped $10bn

OnDeck recently achieved a milestone in the fintech industry by becoming the first online non-bank lender to surpass $10bn in total loans originated to small businesses.

A pioneer of the fintech lending industry, OnDeck began offering its first small business loan in 2017 and has since accumulated more than $10bn in total loan volume in just 11 years. In 2017 alone, it originated $2.1bn-worth of loans.

Filling the gap
In an interview with MPA, OnDeck Australia CEO Cameron Poolman said the business attributes its success to making borrowing easier for small businesses.

“We focus on being tailored, human, and simple,” Poolman said. “We launched in the U.S., and later in Canada and Australia to solve a major issue facing small businesses: efficient access to capital.”

Poolman said the internet has and will continue to revolutionise and speed up the way underserved small businesses access capital. Today, the company helps “fill a credit gap across hundreds of industries by providing fast, secure, and transparent loans that enable small businesses to grow, generate economic activity, and create jobs”.

When OnDeck identified the credit gap over a decade ago, it transformed the means by which small businesses access capital through its proprietary technology and a small business credit scoring system called “OnDeck Score” that efficiently evaluates a business’s creditworthiness and makes lending decisions possible in real time.

“The cutting-edge technology we use to evaluate businesses based on their actual performance, and not solely on business owners’ personal credit scores, makes it possible for us to responsibly expand access to credit for small businesses and to unlock significant potential for their growth and productivity,” Poolman said.

It’s all down to attention
Customers and their experience are the focus of OnDeck’s every decision. The company closely monitors customer feedback via tools such as NPS and Trustpilot.

“It’s down to the fundamentals of attention to detail, transparency, agility, good engagement, listening to what customers want, and all the other elements that make up a positive customer experience,” Poolman said.

Last year, approximately half of OnDeck’s loan originations came from existing customers. OnDeck’s primary goal in Australia is to help the country’s small businesses reach their goals and objectives, and enable them to take advantage of opportunities that come their way.

“We believe with this embedded in our culture, it will well position OnDeck in Australia in terms of volume, customer experience, integrity, governance, processes and operations,” Poolman said.

“To get there, we’re methodically and responsibly building our business in Australia in a way that is strategic and sustainable.”

 

This article was written in partnership with OnDeck.