Thailand’s Siam Commercial Bank inks online lending JV with telco AIS

P2P lending. Credit:Flickr/401(K) 2012

Shares in Thailand’s third largest lender, Siam Commercial Bank Pcl (SCB) jumped in morning trading on Wednesday, following its announcement of a joint venture with the country’s top mobile network, Advanced Info Service Pcl (AIS).

SCB and AIS late on Tuesday announced the creation of AISCB, to provide online lending via online platforms.

The announcement sent SCB‘s shares up nearly 5% when markets opened. AIS shares rose nearly 3% against a benchmark index gain of 0.1%.

“The joint venture will create financial products meeting wide-ranging demand with digital technology as the key driver,” they said in a statement.

Analysts were positive on the partnership.

“This is the only digital lending proposition that has a chance of success in the long term,” said Maria Lapiz, head of institutional research at Maybank Kim Eng, citing the telco’s user base and infrastructure.

AIS, which has 43 million mobile subscribers in Thailand, will hold equal shares in the venture.

The bank could use insight from AIS’s customer behaviour to support the underwriting process, said Finansia Syrus analyst, Yuvanart Suwanumphai.

SCB chief executive Arthid Nanthawithaya was scheduled to hold a news conference later on Wednesday.

Rival lender Kasikokrnbank Pcl began a digital lending push in with Japanese mobile chat app operator Line Corp and launched services last year.

Reuters

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In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

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  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.