Stikcredit joined Bondster in November 2018 and both companies are now celebrating 6 months of successful cooperation. During this time, Stikcredit offered to Bondster investors more than 1500 loans in the total volume of EUR 422,000 with interest rate ranging between 13-13.5 %.
Stikcredit doubled its office network in the first quarter of 2019 by acquiring 14 new offices from a competitor run by experienced teams and with a customer base of over 10,000 people. Stikcredit also managed to conclude a partnership with I&G Brokers – the largest insurance brokerage company in Bulgaria with a network of 200+ offices and 1000+ agents - to better serve its customers and start offering its products in the second quarter of 2019. Stikcredit also doubled its total outstanding principal to EUR 2.2 million in the first quarter of 2019 compared to the same period in 2018.
Stikcredit can be considered as one of the fastest growing payday lenders in terms of network expansion and portfolio growth in Bulgaria. The strong quarterly financial results support the Management’s ambitions and confirm that Stikcredit keeps momentum and year 2019 will be a new record high for the company. The total number of issued loans has so far doubled every year and the projection for 2019 for Stikcredit is to issue 22,000 loans versus 13,000 in 2018.
Find the interview with Svetlin Sabev, Business Development Manager, about the Stikcredit expansion below:
What was the incentive/reason for such a fast growth in the past months?
The fast growth was the result of investment into capacity throughout 2018. We opened 8 new offices in 2018 and as they matured and steadily acquired customers, our issuance rates increased accordingly. We also worked on expanding our online lending business where we increased our marketing budget and continued our efforts to improve performance and drive customer retention up. Our efforts have paid off and online lending has continuously increased on a monthly basis all through 2018 and into 2019.
Did you have to hire more people, how many people do you employee right now?
Yes, in light of the business growth we doubled our personnel and we currently employ 50+ people.
How do you see the development of the Bulgarian non-banking environment?
Non-banking environment continues to be highly competitive and heavily fragmented. The current situation pushes the leaders to continuously innovate and demands from the companies to be always at the top of trends in order to stay competitive. The leading companies have appetite for international expansion, and we believe this trend is likely to continue as incumbents look for larger and less saturated markets.
You have doubled the number of branches lately, what is your ultimate goal in terms of number of branches?
We believe that once we have at about 30 offices, we would get to our comfort zone in terms of operational complexity and geographical coverage. At this stage we would like to drive issuance rates of all offices as close to their normal operating conditions as possible and to further maximize returns by improving our cost structure. Our long-term plan is to reinvest the profits into our online lending business and to use it as a platform for international expansion.
Do you plan to launch any new products?
We currently work on weekly and bi-weekly products. The benefits of such products are the improved risk control and better recovery rates of the loans.
Who is your usual debtor in terms of sex and age?
Our average client is a male/female of the age of 25 to 45 years.
What do most of your borrowers need money for?
Mostly borrowers need short-term financing to prop up their budget due to unexpected house or auto repairs, utility bills or emergencies.