Fintech, CDFI Offer Small-dollar Loan with New Twist

American Banker
Wednesday, December 15, 2021

A new small-dollar loan for borrowers with limited credit histories has emerged from a partnership between a community development financial institution and a fintech. NAAC Finance, the new digital lending arm of the National Asian American Coalition, developed the product with Asenso Finance, a startup that processes and services loans for financial institutions. The loan has two unusual features: Customers must complete financial literacy training before their loan is approved, and alternative data such as income is used in the underwriting. The relationship between NAAC — a CDFI in Daly City, California — and Asenso in Manhattan Beach, California, has an unusual origin.