Nigerian regulators approve 18 new loan companies 

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May 29, 2024
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2 min read
tech law

The news: 

  • The number of licenced loan app companies in Nigeria has increased to 284 as of May 2024, following approval from the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
  • As of the end of March 2024, the number of approved loan companies stood at 266, indicating that the new list has an additional 18. 
  • The FCCPC disclosed this development in its updated list of approved digital lenders.

The updated list consists of companies that have been given full approval, conditional approval, and those licenced by the CBN. 

Per the FCCPC database, 232 companies have been granted full approval to operate as digital lenders in Nigeria, while 41 loan apps have conditional approval.

The commission also listed 11 other companies licenced by the CBN to operate loan apps, making the total number of approved loan app companies 284 for the Nigerian market.

As the number of approved digital lenders increases, there's a corresponding increase in the number of loan apps offering instant loans in Nigeria. 

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Reports indicate that many of the approved digital lenders operate multiple loan apps.

For example, Acetech Finance Limited, one of the approved lenders, operates through eight loan apps, including Kashout, Flashcredit, Flashalart, Swiftcredit, Rapidloans, Acecredit, Aceloan, and Rapidalarts.

Similarly, the CBN-licensed Newedge Finance Limited operates through Palm Credit, New Credit, Easybuy, Xcross Cash, and XCash apps.

Concerns are rising that the FCCPC continues to approve more digital lenders even as it struggles to manage existing players. 

Many experts argue that the commission's inability to bring digital lenders under control is due to their proliferation. 

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FCCPC, on their part, is banking on the consumer credit scheme that was introduced by the Federal Government to regulate the excesses of loan sharks.

In an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday, May 26, 2024, Adamu Abdullahi, the Acting Executive Vice Chairman of the FCCPC, noted that the scheme would help reduce the rate at which Nigerians use unregistered loan applications that tend to tarnish their character. 

He also noted that the federal government's consumer credit scheme has earmarked ₦100 billion in the 2024 budget, which would provide Nigerians with access to collateral-free soft loans. 

The President Bola Tinubu-led administration launched the first phase of the consumer credit scheme in April 2024, targeting civil servants.

The Nigeria Consumer Credit Corporation (CREDICORP) has launched a portal for Nigerians to express interest in obtaining consumer credit.


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