The lucrative, albeit controversial online lending market has experienced a significant boon over the years. The massive popularity and digital accessibility of these loans have been well publicised in the press lately, primarily due to many reforms that have rolled out internationally to protect customers.
A plethora of small lenders were culled out of business by the nature of these reforms, as the monetary value extractable from each individual customer was significantly throttled. However, one payday lending company which has grown extensively through the turbulence is Wonga, arguably the most ‘iconic’ of the industry. With a UK customer base of over 1 million, they’ve grown across the globe in recent years.
Wonga’s latest acquisition is Spanish company Credito Pocket, who was a lending company based in Barcelona. This is aimed to boost the visibility of their Wonga.es domain. It is not yet determined what impact an independent Catalonia would have on the brand’s penetration into the rest of Spain at this stage, however.
The UK and Spain are just two locations Wonga have expanded in, as they also have a presence in Germany, Poland, Canada and South Africa. It’s a testament to the power of brand recognition permitting faster buy-in from a new customer base. Not all their expansion has been a bed of roses. However, their foray into the business loan marketplace came to an end with the sale of their ‘Everline’ brand to Orange Money (trading as Ezbob).
Much of the success of Wonga is down to Errol Damelin, who founded the company back in 2007. South African entrepreneur Errol has shown significant interest in expanding his reach in the online services marketplace with recent investment activity in real estate brands ‘Nested’ and ‘Purple Bricks.’