RIYADH: Launched in November 2014, Beehive is a monetary expertise (fintech) firm that created the Center East and North Africa (MENA) area’s first peer-to-peer (P2P) lending platform to be regulated within the Center East by the Dubai Monetary Companies Authority.
It has quickly grown into a number one disruptor within the fintech trade, offering an alternate finance resolution for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Nizar Al-Maree heads Beehive in Saudi Arabia and is main the enlargement of the corporate within the Kingdom with the 2020 launch of the primary regional partnership of its sort between a pioneer Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) fintech and a significant Saudi financial institution to supply digital SME financing.
The brainchild of serial entrepreneur Craig Moore, supported by Rick Pudner, former group CEO of Emirates NBD financial institution, Beehive is a cloud-based, scalable on-line lending platform that instantly connects companies on the lookout for finance with traders that may present funding assist for his or her development.
The platform applies the revolutionary expertise of crowdfunding, connecting a enterprise with a number of traders, to get rid of the price and complexity of typical finance.
“The result’s a extra environment friendly, streamlined course of that provides SMEs entry to finance at a excessive pace and decrease value, whereas opening a brand new asset class for traders with nice returns on their cash,” Al-Maree informed Arab Information.
“It created the primary peer-to-peer SME lending platform within the area, the one one regulated in a couple of nation within the GCC (regulated within the UAE and Bahrain).
“The crew behind it are consultants who got here from distinctive and numerous backgrounds and who managed to develop quickly whatever the problem of introducing an idea akin to P2P lending to the GCC and tapping into a really sophisticated matter (SME).
“The SME credit score evaluation software, that’s totally created and developed in-house to permit monetary establishments to evaluate and perceive the credit score worthiness of small companies, is turning into a sport changer and is now in its fifth technology with very low default charges (lower than 2 p.c),” he stated.
This mannequin allowed Beehive to digitize and streamline the lending course of for SMEs to offer a quick and extra cost-efficient system that created a win-win resolution, providing corporations faster entry to lower-cost loans, and traders safer and higher returns on their cash with the chance to diversify the chance.
The affect of this idea is that it has inspired SMEs to be extra revolutionary and allowed them to develop, creating extra jobs and offering additional companies. Because of this, the enterprise and investor communities and the broader economic system will profit from new alternatives for development.
“It’s additionally value mentioning that Beehive is the primary independently licensed P2P finance platform on this planet and the primary peer-to-peer platform that’s Shariah compliant, which offers each traders and companies with monetary merchandise which might be compliant with Shariah ideas and is acknowledged by the Shariah Evaluate Bureau and audited by Shariah monetary consultants,” Al-Maree added.
“Given the expertise disruption affect of the monetary establishments and the alternatives it opens with the quantity of innovation in fintech, banks and monetary establishments began doing one in all three issues to maintain up: Partnerships with fintech, establishing incubators for fintech startups, or buying fintech corporations with options and merchandise of curiosity.”
Beehive has been chosen amongst lots of of screened fintech ventures across the globe by an area financial institution for a partnership to offer SMEs within the Kingdom with quick and lower-cost monetary merchandise using its expertise and experience within the native and regional SME markets.
“That is important for 2 causes: It’s the first relation of this sort between fintech and a financial institution within the area. Secondly, this would be the begin of a brand new space of monetary companies, the place extra banks shall be motivated to go forward and accomplice with different fintechs that serve their functions, which at the moment is just not a simple determination to make,” stated Al-Maree.
“The idea we’re making ready with the financial institution will encourage different monetary establishments to offer different monetary merchandise that serve completely different segments with the identical logic. This can trigger a revolution within the banking companies and take our economic system and high quality of life to the subsequent degree.
“Advancing monetary expertise and companies is the idea for a powerful and fast-growing economic system that allows innovation and creativity throughout all sectors to offer excessive requirements of companies and better monetary inclusion.
“SME lending is thought for its complexity, excessive danger and excessive value. Moreover, from a P2P perspective, the important thing problem for P2P platforms is how you can achieve the belief of the general public to put money into the platform and permit the enterprise to show its idea, whether or not SME lending or another thought,” he added.
“Final month, we managed to lend greater than half-a-billion AED (Emirati dirham) to SMEs by our platform. We now have registered greater than 12,000 traders who’ve facilitated funding of greater than AED500 million ($136 million), supporting the funding requests of greater than 500 companies. This can be a very tough job that Beehive has efficiently finished and is the primary driver for the enlargement.”
Beehive plans to make the most of its abilities and expertise to introduce new and extra technically sophisticated merchandise that can simplify monetary companies to cowl bigger segments of the market on each company/SMEs and particular person ranges by working with native and regional monetary establishments and banks as a digital enabler.
“We now have places of work within the UAE, Bahrain and Saudi, and we wish to grow to be the Gulf’s regional enabler for SME lending,” Al-Maree stated.