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Validus, Citi establish US$100m facility to drive SME financing

Validus, Citi establish US$100m facility to drive SME financing
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Singapore – SME growth financing platform Validus and global financial services company Citi have established a US$100m securitisation facility, collateralised by SME loans originated by Validus in Singapore. This will drive SME financing in Southeast Asia.

The facility is also supported by First Plus Asset Management, a Singapore-based multi-asset investment manager focused on Asia structured credit and equities.

Milena Naitoh, head of corporate development at Validus, said, “This collaboration with Citi underscores the quality of our origination, credit portfolio management, strength and resilience of our business, in today’s market environment. With this evolution in our financing strategy, as well as the support of Citi as an established player in the asset-backed securities space, we are now even better positioned to support the growth of SMEs with accessible and effortless business finance.” 

She added, “As Validus continues to extend its position as a leading all-in-one SME finance platform in Southeast Asia, this securitised lending structure, together with a diversified financing and product strategy, will enable us to grow at a much greater scale. We are honoured that Citi has chosen to collaborate with us on this landmark securitised lending transaction with a fintech start-up in Southeast Asia, and we are looking at replicating this transaction playbook across other markets.” 

Validus is currently raising its Series C equity round for an undisclosed amount. The combination of the securitisation facility and Series C equity funding will further drive Validus’ expansion plans as it starts to introduce neo-banking products in other Southeast Asia markets. 

Validus’ proprietary algorithmic credit models and uniquely aggregated alternative underwriting data has driven reliable historical performance in origination, underwriting and collections. Since its launch in 2015, Validus has disbursed over US$1.6 billion across more than 65,000 loans to small businesses in Singapore, Vietnam, Indonesia and Thailand. 

Meanwhile, Lei Tie, co-founder and head of structured credit at First Plus, said, “We are thrilled to be part of the transaction, which has established a gold standard for non-recourse asset based financing for Southeast Asia, and to be able to support Validus on their next phase of growth.” 

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