1. Nova Credit

Company: Nova Credit

Founder: Misha Esipov

Website: https://novacredit.com


About Nova Credit


Nova Credit is the world’s only cross-border credit bureau. Nova Credit makes it possible for lenders like American Express and HSBC to access credit data for immigrant applicants whose credit histories are ‘left behind’ in their previous countries. Millions of creditworthy people immigrate to new countries annually without credit histories that lenders in their destination country can use to underwrite credit applications.

Without access to these credit histories lending have no choice but to decline these would-be customers or offer lower limits / higher APRs. It’s bad for financial inclusion AND for the lenders who can’t access credit hungry borrowers hiding in plain sight. To date, we have partnered with credit bureaus in 25 countries, and unlocked access for lenders to 2 billion consumer credit profiles globally. While relatively new in the UK, Nova Credit has been operating in the US for 6-7 years and we partner with large incumbent and fintech institutions including HSBC, American Express, Verizon and SoFi.

We received FCA authorisation in the UK just before Christmas 2022 and have amassed several early UK adopters that are in the process of going live with Nova Credit technology. Several of these first UK customers, that range from multinational financial institutions to car finance providers and mobile phone contract providers, will be announced in the second half of the year. Working out how to access the 10-million strong immigrant population is a huge priority for financial lenders in the UK and launching in the UK was a logical next step for us after cementing our position in the US.

With Consumer Duty about to come into effect, it is a priority for more lenders to ensure that they are treating fairly all credit applicants, regardless of their countries of origin, and removing barriers such as lack of credit history to achieve greater financial inclusion.

However, accessing immigrants is not just about financial inclusion. It makes great commercial sense too. Our own research has found that two thirds of the people who’ve moved to the UK to work have BA qualifications or higher; more than a quarter earn more than the UK average wage, and half expect to be in the UK for the next ten years minimum. Lenders are continually seeking new markets to grow into as part of their overarching commercial strategies.

When you consider that, by 2025, 100% of UK net population growth will come from immigrants, it’s clear that the UK’s immigrant population is a huge credit market opportunity that’s been hiding in plain sight.