Reprieve for borrowers as Zenka announces new policy to alleviate the plight of loan defaulters

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Digital lender Zenka has announced the partial write-off of past due interests across its entire loan portfolio.

The move will see a total of Ksh 166 million in outstanding debt cleared off its books, with the beneficiaries of this new company policy being borrowers whose loans are non-performing and whose lives were severely impacted by the adverse effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.  

“As a socially responsible lender, we routinely and thoroughly analyze prevailing market situations and act proactively and pre-emptively to contribute to the country’s economic recovery by helping our customers regain their financial balance and grow,” said Zenka country manager Duncun Motanya.

The new Zenka approach is expected to significantly reduce the defaulters’ financial burden, thus facilitating them taking steps toward regaining their financial balance. The partial write-off is the first of the company’s significant strategic initiatives aiming to support its customers, majority of whom are micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMES).

It will be accompanied by another initiative to facilitate debt repayment for Zenka’s customers, with a 3-day grace period to borrowers struggling to repay on time. No interest will be charged during the first three days past the due date and the grace period will be provided to all Zenka’s customers with no exemptions or additional costs.

“We’ve been promoting responsible lending since the very first day in the Kenyan market. Meticulous creditworthiness assessment combined with smart financial products and flexible repayment options enabled us to open up new possibilities to millions of Kenyans and motivate them to work harder and think smarter,” Motanya added.

The company strives to set and promote proper lending standards, thus reshaping the industry into one built on best practices in lending and consumer protection. To help customers with their loan settlement, Zenka offers them a flexible repayment program, bearing in mind that even the most deliberate customer may face unpredicted difficulties. Customers who can’t repay on the due date are encouraged to contact the lender and work out a solution that will satisfy both parties without the need for escalation.

‘’The highly challenging post-COVID period, resulting in massive loss of employment and closure of micro-enterprises, requires even more flexibility on the lending industry’s side,” Motanya said. 

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