Funding Societies signs US$50 million (THB1.785 billion) credit facility with HSBC to drive SME growth in Thailand and Southeast Asia
[Left] Regina Lee, Head of Commercial Banking, HSBC Singapore; [Right] Kelvin Teo, Co-founder and Group CEO, Funding Societies | Modalku
Bangkok, Thailand, 22 August 2022 – Funding Societies, Southeast Asia’s largest Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SME) digital financing platform, today announced a US$50 million (THB1.785 billion) credit facility* signing with HSBC Singapore to continue expanding the firm’s reach to serving underserved SMEs in the region. It was amongst the first fintech to be awarded the debt crowdfunding license by Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission.
This represents a huge opportunity for Thailand’s nascent SME market, and digital finance players like Funding Societies can help accelerate growth of many businesses and bring revenue back to pre-pandemic levels.
SMEs make up 97% of all enterprises in Southeast Asia bringing 40% of GDP value across the region. In 2018, a report by the Asian Development Bank Institute highlighted that Thai SMEs’ contribution to the local economy accounted for 45% of the total GDP (or seven trillion Thai baht), which was larger than the economic contribution from large-sized enterprises. However, that figure dropped to 32% in the second quarter of 2020 before recovering to 34.5% in the fourth quarter, last year due to the pandemic. With the local economy expected to recover this year, led by business activities resuming, access to financing remains more crucial than ever.
Co-founder and Group CEO of Funding Societies | Modalku, Kelvin Teo, said, “We’re honoured to receive such a sizeable facility from a global bank such as HSBC. This marks a critical milestone for us and is a testament to our credit track record through Covid-19. HSBC’s foresight, global capabilities and scalable approach further equips us to better satisfy the underserved SME segments in the region, especially given Thailand’s potential presenting a huge financing opportunity for small businesses in the country.”
Commercial lending in Asia Pacific is projected to grow at a CAGR of 16.5%, generating a revenue of more than US$7 trillion (THB249 trillion) by 2028 – which makes up about 25% of the global market size of US$27.4 trillion (THB978 trillion). The digital experience for SMEs is still underserved and is not at the same pace of digital transformation as with retail lending. Funding Societies has a track record of loan disbursement of over more than US$2.6 billion (THB92.7 billion) through more than 5.1 million transactions across the region. Through this new credit facility FinTech lenders will be able to channel the funds via its range of tailored financing solutions across SME segments in all five of its markets.
The signing enables HSBC to extend its global capabilities by tapping on the underserved segments across the region. Furthermore, HSBC will act as the structuring bank, lender, facility and security agent in providing a flexible, scalable and pan-regional financing solution to support Funding Societies’ business expansion in the region.
Regina Lee, Head of Commercial Banking, HSBC Singapore, said, “As a leading SME digital financing platform, Funding Societies is playing an important role in contributing to Southeast Asia’s new economic growth by driving broader financial inclusion and supporting homegrown companies which are the building blocks of these economies. We are thrilled to support Funding Societies as they expand their reach to serving underserved SMEs in the region.”
This announcement comes at the heels of Funding Societies’ most recent acquisition of regional digital payments platform CardUp (subject to regulatory approvals), as part of a series of efforts to diversify its services beyond lending. The digital financing platform also achieved several strategic milestones including its Series C+ equity raise of US$144 million (THB5.141 billion) in February, its recent investment into Bank Index in Indonesia, and market entry into Vietnam – its fifth market.
About Funding Societies
Funding Societies | Modalku is the largest SME digital financing platform in Southeast Asia. It is licensed and registered in Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, and operates in Vietnam. It is backed by SoftBank Vision Fund 2, SoftBank Ventures Asia, Sequoia Capital India, Alpha JWC Ventures, SMBC Bank, BRI Ventures, VNG Corporation, Rapyd Ventures, Endeavor, EDBI, SGInnovate, Qualgro, and Golden Gate Ventures amongst others. The FinTech company provides business financing to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), and has a track record disbursement of US$2.6 billion in June 2022, annualising at US$1.1 billion. It was given the MAS FinTech Award in 2016, the Global SME Excellence Award at the United Nations’ ITU Telecom World in 2017, KPMG Fintech100 in 2018, Brands for Good in 2019, and ASEAN Startup of the Year by Global Startup Awards in 2020. In 2021, it was honourably mentioned as Responsible Digital Innovator of the Year by World Bank IFC SME Finance Forum and won the MAS Fintech award for the second time.
About The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited
The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited is the founding member of the HSBC Group. HSBC serves customers worldwide from offices in 63 countries and territories in its geographical regions: Europe, Asia, North America, Latin America, and Middle East and North Africa. With assets of US$2,985bn as of 30 June 2022, HSBC is one of the largest banking and financial services organisations in the world.
Funding Societies | Modalku
Jittin Puntunsoonthron Joachim Leong
Marketing Manager Assistant Manager, Public Relations