MSMEs welcome efficient, seamless system adapted in processing loan grants from the gov’t.

By Victoria “NIKE” De Dios, The Philippine Business and News

Gone are the days when the long and unnecessary lining up becomes the system that we Filipinos get used to in practically everything we do such as paying bills, withdrawing or depositing money in the bank, or buying something.

As the government through the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI) resumes the processing of loan applications for micro and small entrepreneurs affected by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC), through the use of its mobile super app DiskarTech, has collaborated with the Small Business Corporation (SB Corp) to embark on an efficient, seamless and dependable system in processing these loans application.

Philippines’  first and only Taglish financial inclusion super app, the DiskarTech will serve as a digital platform for individual lending from the COVID-19 Assistance to Restart Enterprises (CARES) 2 Program of the Small Business (SB) Corporation, an attached agency of the DTI. The acceptance of applications for CARES 2 has resumed last week after a brief hiatus following an oversubscription from the borrowers.

With DiskarTech app,  it would optimize the loan application process of SB Corporation through a digitalized Know Your Customer (KYC) procedure, a faster, easier, and more secure alternative from its current manual practice.

In the media advisory sent to THEPHILBIZNEWS, Lito Villanueva, executive vice president and chief innovation and financial inclusion officer of RCBC said, “We developed our digital solutions to benefit the majority of Filipinos. The simplified and streamlined loan process, made possible through our digital product, DiskarTech, will make this service more accessible and less intimidating to MSME owners and OFWs who stand to gain the most from this partnership.  We are working hand in hand with the government to facilitate financial inclusion through our innovative solutions.”

“The electronic KYC shall include the obtaining of mandatory customer information, identity card verification through ID authentication, and identity verification through the matching of information provided against ID details, similarity check against ID submitted, and liveness check,” Villanueva added.

With the use of DiskarTech app. the release of loan proceeds and repayment of amortization shall also be facilitated in-app which eliminates unnecessary physical contact and promotes observance of social distancing protocols amidst the community quarantine.

For his part, Frank Lloyd C. Gonzaga, vice president for planning and advocacy of Small Business Corporation said, “We welcome this collaboration with RCBC’s DiskarTech digital platform which will now provide our target market, the micro and small entrepreneurs, greater access to available financing through their mobile devices, anytime, anywhere.”

Aside from the streamlined loan process, borrowers of the SB Corporation also stand to benefit from the suite of inclusion services in the DiskarTech app. The agency’s clients will earn 3.25% annual interest from their savings, and gain access to bills payment, convenient cash in and withdrawal touchpoints, fund transfers, microinsurance, and telemedicine, among others.  These are features they can also earn additional income from by offering “paki-suyo” services to those who don’t have the DiskarTech app.

CARES, initially launched last June, is a billion-peso enterprise rehabilitation financing facility under the Pondo sa Pagbabago at Pag-asenso program of the government for micro and small enterprises affected by the COVID-19 crisis. The loanable amount is up to P200,000 for micro-enterprises and P500,000 for small enterprise. Loan terms are 18 and 30 months, inclusive of a six-month grace period.

DiskarTech recently made history as the fastest local finance app to reach one million downloads just 38 days from its market launch. As of writing, it is also ranked first among free finance apps in Google Play Store and second in Apple App Store.

RCBC is one of the leading universal banks accelerating digital transformation in the Philippines. It was recently recognized as the best digital bank in the Philippines at the 14th Annual Alpha Southeast Asia Best Financial Institution Awards 2020. Among its digital products include RCBC mobile and online banking, handheld ATM Go mobile POS terminals, and DiskarTech, among others.