SINGAPORE (July 26): After selling off his stake in Platinum Bank in Ukraine, Peter Barcak, co-founder and CEO of CredoLab, turned his attention to a pertinent issue he had encountered as a banker – overcoming the lack of data when assessing new customers for credit facilities.

He wanted to improve the situation in emerging economies, focusing on areas where traditional sources of credit data, such as credit bureaus, were not available.

His brainchild, CredoLab, was founded in January 2016 in Singapore, with the aim of using alternative data, or non-traditional sources of information such as from mobile phones to score the creditworthiness of potential banking customers.

Barcak plans to use Singapore as a springboard into the Southeast Asian market, as the demand for credit inches upwards. Notably, of the 1.7 billion adults in the world who are still unbanked, 95 million are in Indonesia alone, according to the Global Findex database. Presently, Credolab is also embarking on an expansion into India, Africa and South America.

Besides geographical expansion, CredoLab is looking into expanding its product offerings as well – with the launch of Credoapply, an application-form platform which can be utilised by any bank or lender for the digital onboarding of new customers.

According to Barcak, both creditors and borrowers have benefited from CredoLab – with lenders reporting a 20% higher approval rate for loans and credit card applications, which has trickle-down effects on borrowers as well.

CredoLab has raised US$3.1 million in funding so far from venture capitalists such as Walden International, FORUM and Fintonia Group. Investors include financial service lead generator GoBear.

To find out more about Credolab, read CredoLab uses mobile phone metadata for credit scoring of unbanked in The Edge Singapore (Issue 892, week of July 29) which is on sale now.