Naver Financial launches advice service for entrepreneurs
Naver Financial on Monday launched a new service that offers entrepreneurs financial tools and advice and connects them with loan services and government funds.
The new service, dubbed Partner Financial Support, is the latest in a number of Naver Financial products targeting small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) rather than retail customers.
There isn't currently a similar service that provides integrated financial information just for SMEs, according to Naver.
“According to a research team from Kang Hyoung-goo, a professor at Hanyang University, one common difficulty that all SMEs have, whether they are just starting out or are in an expansion phase, was a lack of information,” Naver Financial said in a release Monday.
"When stabilizing, they said they lacked information on government support programs and when in the expansion phase, they needed more information on how to secure more funds [from private institutions]."
Naver Financial, a wholly owned subsidiary of Naver, has been pushing support for SMEs registered on Naver's shopping platform.
Early in November, the financial subsidiary launched a beta version of what's called a fast-track settlement service which provides sellers with payment for the products they've sold before customers confirm their purchases in order to secure faster circulation of money.
It usually took 9.4 days for sellers to receive payments after an order was placed, but the new service, which is expected to officially launch within this year, will shorten that time period to 5.4 days, according to the financial subsidiary. It will be provided for free for those who have a history of selling 1 million won ($900) of products for three consecutive months and have a return rate below 20 percent.
It is also planning to launch its first loan service, designed exclusively for SMEs, by partnering up with Mirae Asset Capital within this year.
For fledgling SMEs which don’t yet have a credit history, Naver Financial says it will analyze other types of non-financial data, such as how many regular customers it has online, how well it was rated by customers and how fast its delivery was, in order to give out small loans which would otherwise be impossible through traditional banks.
“In order for SMEs to stabilize their business, the most important factor is to have access to the right financial infrastructure,” said Choi In-hyuk, CEO of Naver Financial.
“Naver Financial will continue to consider what financial services are needed for SMEs.”
BY JIN EUN-SOO [email@example.com]
with the Korea JoongAng Daily
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