OneConnect is teaming up with UBX to develop a blockchain platform that will make it easier for small businesses to secure loans in the Philippines. UBX is the FinTech subsidiary of the Union Bank of the Philippines, while OneConnect is a subsidiary of China’s Ping An Group.
The alliance will specifically target micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), which are responsible for 63 percent of Filipino employment yet receive only 9.2 percent of the loans from the country’s major banks. The digital platform will streamline the loan application process, using facial recognition, AI, and risk assessment tech to lower approval times and reduce the threat of fraud.
“In the Philippines, 77 percent of our population is unbanked and we have a diverse geography that spans across over 7,000 islands,” said UBX President and CEO John Januszczak. “Digital financial solutions will allow us to include more MSMEs in the financial system.”
“Our technology can help enterprising businesses leapfrog into better ways of doing business,” added OneConnect Southeast Asia CEO Tan Bin Ru. “Technology can empower communities that traditionally cannot be reached.”
OneConnect recently made headlines for developing AI that could read text at nearly human levels, while Ping An has used facial recognition for digital loan applications. Union Bank previously partnered with Daon to provide biometric authentication for its mobile banking app.