MetaBank, CURO to offer flexible credit to underbanked

MetaBank, a provider of payment, community banking and financing solutions, today announced an agreement with CURO, a facilitator of short-term credit to underbanked consumers. Together, the organizations will launch a new line of credit product the parties believe will be more flexible and transparent than others in the market, and well-suited for US-based underbanked consumers. CURO and Meta expect to unveil the new, joint brand and a timeline for the pilot launch later this year.

Through the credit option expected to be launched by CURO and Meta, underbanked consumers would be able to access credit with a flexible timeline for repayment. These consumers would also be able to control their cost of borrowing through transparent fees that would apply only when credit is drawn. Estimates indicate 67 million adults are considered un- or underbanked. Many of these adults typically have poor credit ratings and, as such, have difficulty securing credit or loans — this product is expected to provide a responsible credit option for many of those consumers.

“This relationship expands Meta’s longstanding commitment to serving consumers across the credit spectrum,” said Brent Turner, Meta EVP and head of consumer lending. “We believe Meta’s experience in specialty consumer lending and payments products, combined with CURO’s 20 years of proven experience providing credit to underbanked consumers, will result in a product and platform that drives innovation, transparency and responsible credit to the market.”

In the first three years of the agreement with CURO, Meta expects to hold up to $350 million in product receivables on its balance sheet. This agreement is part of Meta’s ongoing expansion into consumer lending, following the 2016 acquisition of a platform that provides a comprehensive solution for marketplace lending, including underwriting and loan management.

“We are very excited to announce this agreement with Meta,” said Don Gayhardt, CURO president and CEO. “We believe the relationship with Meta will further expand our addressable market in the US, and we are pleased to introduce consumers to another credit product with flexibility and transparent pricing.”

 

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