Airtel Uganda has today launched the Wewole (meaning borrow) service, a micro-credit service using its Airtel Money platform. It will allow Airtel Money users and agents access loan facilities through Airtel Money. Wewole is executed in partnership with Jumo, that describes itself as a marketplace connecting millions of small businesses to a world of financial choices.
By the look of things, Jumo will provide the backend software that will determine one’s credit worth basing on usage patterns while Airtel Money will provide a platform from which money can be borrowed. The more one uses Airtel services, the higher are his/her chances of qualifying for a bigger loan from the service.
Loan applicants have to be registered with Airtel Money with a minimum of active 6 months of transaction history through Airtel Money. They will have to dial *185*8# to access Wewole. The service targets both ordinary Airtel users as well as Airtel Money agents who relatively transact large volumes but both won’t be required to provide collateral.
Wewole will allow Airtel Money users to borrow between 8,000 to UGX 500,000 Shillings while Airtel Money Agents can borrow between 100,000 to 1,000,000 Shillings.
Regarding loan repayments, the borrower has 3 loan repayment periods of 7,14 or 21 days depending on one’s choosing with a minimum interest of 6.75% while the maximum is capped at 15%.
Airtel follows MTN’s lead with ith micro-savings & lending service, MoKash that launched last year leveraging MTN Mobile Money with considerable success, except that Wewole will only allow Airtel Money users and agents to borrow not save. We assume savings will be commensurate of one’s Airtel Money balance or float.