Sometimes you get to a point where you need money urgently to sort out something. You can turn to your friends or relatives for help. However, they may not always be in a position to help. Luckily, you can apply for a loan from a bank or online lending services. Apart from banks, the following are some of the platforms you can use for private
business loans in Kenya.
Private Business Loans
M-Shwari is a paperless banking service offered through M-Pesa. It is a collaboration between Safaricom and CBA Bank launched in 2012. Safaricom users can borrow a loan from M-Shwari. To get this loan, you need to be over 18 years old, have a registered and active M-Pesa account for the last six months. You also need to have an updated M-Pesa menu.
The minimum loan you can borrow is Ksh 100 while the maximum is Ksh 20,000. The loan has a repayment period of 30 days with an interest rate of 7.5%. You can repay the loan directly from your M-Pesa. In case 30 days elapse having not paid, they deduct the amount due from your M-Shwari. In case of delay, you repay the credit with an additional fee of 7.5% of the balance.
This is a savings and loans account. It is a result of the collaboration between Safaricom and Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB). The minimum amount one can borrow is Ksh 50, while the maximum is Ksh 1,000,000. You need to activate your KCB M-Pesa menu.
To qualify for a loan, you must be 18 years old or above, have a registered and active M-Pesa account for the last six months and an updated M-Pesa menu. Your M-Pesa transaction history will determine your loan limit.
MCo-op cash is a Co-operative Bank of Kenya loans. Using MCo-op Cash app, you can access banking services such as loans. The minimum amount you can borrow is Ksh 3,000 while the maximum is Ksh 100,000.
To qualify for MCo-op cash loan, you need to be a Cooperative Bank customer. You also need to download the app from the Google Play Store or the iOS Store. The loan attracts the following charges: One month individual loan attracts 1.166% interest while three months individual loan attracts 3.498% interest. The business loan attracts 1.166% interest while three-month insurance loan attracts 0.102% interest.
Eazzy loan is a product provided by Equity Bank. You need to have an active bank account with Equity Bank. You also need to have an Equitel SIM card in your mobile phone. There are two types of loans you can get: Equity bank loan and Eazzy plus loan. From the Eazzy plus loan, you can borrow up to three million Kenyan shillings. The bank loan limit is a minimum of Ksh 100 and maximum, of Ksh 200,000.
The bank loan has twelve months repayment period while Eazzy plus loan has a repayment period of thirty days. The loans have an interest rate of between 2% and 10% inclusive of bank charges, loan appraisal fee and government tax.
Branch, launched in 2015, has its root in San Francisco with an office in Nairobi. Many Kenyans have been borrowing loans from the platform. To qualify for a loan from Branch, you need to be an M-Pesa user and have a Facebook account that match with your official names on your ID.
You can download the app from Google Play Store and then link it to your Facebook account. Then enter the required details such as the phone number. The app has a minimum loan limit of Ksh 1000 and a maximum of Ksh 50,000. The loan advanced is disbursed through M-Pesa while the interest rate is dependent on repayment period.
Tala, launched in 2014, was formerly known as Mkopo Rahisi. To access Tala loan, you need to have a good M-Pesa track record and also have a smartphone. The loan limit is dependent on your repayment trend and M-Pesa transactions.
All you need to do is to download the Tala application from Google Play Store and then link the app to your Facebook account. Then fill the required details. The minimum loan they advance is Ksh 500 while the maximum is Ksh 50,000 with an interest rate of 15%. The loan has installment repayment option of three weeks through the M-Pesa.
Timiza by Barclays
Timiza is an app that was recently launched by Barclays Bank. The product is available to anyone with a mobile phone since it is not necessary to have a Barclays account to access the product. You can use the app to save by depositing money through M-Pesa to qualify for a higher loan. You can also access the product if you do not have a Smartphone by dialing *848# using your mobile phone.
Finserve Africa launched the mKey app indicating a revolution in the customer-centric financial services. With the app, you can send money to wallets such as M-Pesa, Equitel Money and Airtel money. Also, you can top airtime directly from the app for Safaricom, Equitel, Airtel, Telkom and Faiba lines. Apart from borrowing a loan, you can also pay for goods and services and even access pay bill services.
Before signing up with the above platforms for private business loans, make sure to check loan interest rates, repayment period and the requirements.
Vincent is an experienced journalist from Kenya as well as a statistician. He has a degree in Applied Statistics with computing from the University of Eldoret.