Contxto – Latin America is filled with fintechs who have eyes on the ground and tech to identify users and businesses that are eligible for a loan. That helps explain why some of the world’s biggest companies have been forging partnerships with these startups recently.
Last Monday (21), Uber Eats announced that it will be working with Mexican fintech, Credijusto, to offer its restaurants exclusive loans. That very same day, competitor Didi Food announced a similar agreement but with fintech Konfío.
Three days later, on Thursday (24), Konfío once again made headlines to announce it was granted a credit line by IDB Invest for up to MX$1.3 billion (~US$59 million).
On Thursday too, Mercado Libre stated that Goldman Sachs had granted it a R$400 million (~US$73 million) loan to be dispersed as credit lines for small businesses in Brazil.
Fintech and food delivery competition heats up… with loans?
Fintechs Credijusto and Konfío have a lot in common. They’re both based in Mexico City, target small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), have raised funding with hotshot Kaszek Ventures, and recently made LinkedIn’s top 10 startups ranking.
There are also plenty of similarities in these fintechs’ big name partners for loan-granting.
Both Didi, Uber, and their corresponding food delivery arms are backed by Japanese investor, SoftBank. They aim for the same industry and market and have been pulled into a fierce competition for food delivery supremacy in Latam.
So it would seem that to appease their respective restaurant partners, they want to offer them loans with favorable terms via Mexican fintechs.
Konfío and Mercado Libre eye SMEs in Latin America
On a Konfío-related note. The startup also snagged a loan from IDB Invest. The first installment will be for MX$800 million (~US$36.1 million) and can be expanded to up to the aforementioned US$59 million.
Through the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to analyze loan requests, the fintech will identify SMEs eligible for credit. Evidently these millions will play a part in its deal with Didi Food and its restaurants.
Then, there’s the agreement between Goldman Sachs and Mercado Libre.
Although it’s not the first time the former procures the latter a credit line. Last December, Goldman Sachs granted Mercado Libre’s fintech arm in Mexico a loan for US$125 million.
Back in Brazil, the fresh financing will help SMEs pull through the pandemic. Moreover, Mercado Libre has been an active player in connecting these businesses with credit since the launch of its R$600 million (US$114 million) credit line in April.
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