Indian startup Datacultr unlocks smartphone loans for the unbanked

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IoT takes the pain out of smartphone financing in India.

According to a report by World Bank, 1.7 billion individuals in the world still remain unbanked.

Datacultr, an IoT & Smartphone technology platform, is facilitating financial inclusion in India through ODYSSEY, its solution for consumer lending companies. People’s desire to own a smartphone and its clear utility in the emerging world is Odyssey’s cornerstone. To enable unbanked & underserved access formal credit, the platform reduces default rates for Banks, NBFCs, MFIs & Fintechs, on their smartphone financing products.

According to a report by World Bank, 1.7 billion individuals in the world still remain unbanked. The financial inclusion of these people is critical. Lending small amounts to buy a smartphone is one of the innovative ways that consumer lending & fintech companies have identified, to bring such people in the fold of organized credit.

With the proprietary technology provided by Datacultr, lenders that finance smartphones, can keep a track of these assets, by setting up triggers that can alert them against potential frauds and asset re-sale. The platform allows lenders to remotely manage smartphones given out on installments/Loan, by setting up a unique device experience module on the smartphone using templates that help them chart out the life cycle of the borrower throughout the tenure of the loan. In cases where delay in payments happen, Odyssey allows the lender to block some features of the device user-interface. After the repeated efforts, if the customer still fails to pay the due amount, Odyssey can lock the device remotely upon the decision of the bank, rendering the device unusable. It blocks everything except certain critical features like emergency calls, SMS inbox, etc, till the EMI is repaid. Once the missed installments are paid, the phone is unlocked and can be used as normal.

On the other hand, Datacultr's technology acts as an added incentive for users to repay their loans. When payment history is reported back to the banks, the costumer’s credit score builds and hence, can get access to big-ticket size in the future. Besides, this encourages lenders to stir up the number of loans to unbanked users with no credit history or other collateral.

Datacultr makes it easier for Banks, Fintech companies & NBFC’s to bring people without a bank account; and who cannot afford to buy a smartphone outright, in the frame of financial inclusion.