ZestFinance will propel the market for prime consumer loans

ZestFinance, the fintech company specializing in credit ratings, said Wednesday (July 15) that it is heading into the prime consumer loan market.

According to a Release Wednesday of the company, ZestFinance is launching Basix, an online lending offering that it says will “provide much-needed credit to millions of middle-class Americans often turned down by banks.” This new product will be powered by the company’s machine learning platform, which has been used to make credit decisions using a multitude of variables – in this case, tens of thousands of variables – according to the business.

ZestFinance said in its statement that the quasi-prime market posed a challenge for lenders. Basix, through unsecured personal loans, will be available for three years at what ZestFinance said are annual percentage rates ranging from 26% to 36%. The loans will be fixed, which of course indicates that the payment amounts and percentage rates will not change. There will also be a 15 day grace period for payments. Loan amounts will range from $3,000 to $5,000.

The company said its initial Basix availability will cover Alabama, Georgia, Missouri, New Mexico, South Dakota and Utah. ZestFinance is planning a nationwide rollout later in 2015, according to the statement.

The company said its application process will be streamlined and transparent with an option for consumers to save money by also paying off loans sooner.

ZestFinance also said it would make the Basix platform available to other lenders.

“Our technology enables lenders to transform the way they make credit decisions and, in doing so, meet the needs of millions of people who are currently underserved by banks,” said Douglas Merrill, CEO of ZestFinance, in the press release. “By helping other businesses make more accurate credit decisions, we can dramatically increase the availability of fair and transparent credit and transform consumer lending.”

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