AssetStream is a blockchain-enabled peer-to-peer microfinance platform providing access to over 264 million unbanked and other financially deprived people from all over the world. It is one of the most promising microfinance platforms targeting specifically the ASEAN market.
What Is AssetStream?
AssetStream platform provides a way for loan extension and fund transfers for small-scale entrepreneurs deprived of financial services from conventional monetary institutions. AssetStream provides an innovative microcredit feature based on blockchain technology.
AssetStream brings investors and businesses together while providing a seamless platform for peer to peer lending. The 264 millions of unbanked population in South East Asia can have a better-regulated alternative with suitable loan conditions and protection. Lenders can also build a steady monthly return.
The vision for AssetStream is ineffectively reaching the unbanked people while providing loans to individuals, businesses, and organizations lacking access to the financial tools of a bank.
Blockchain technology within the platform enables a transparent and accountable platform while eliminating third party institutions, borrower-friendly interest rates, and faster loan processing. Borrowers and lenders can make transactions in a secure manner while having the necessary information.
Inspired by the “International Year of Microcredit” dedicated by the U.N. back in 2005 and Muhammad Yunus, a Bangladeshi social entrepreneur who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize jointly with the Grameen Bank in 2006 “for their efforts through microcredit to create economic and social development from below”.
AssetStream is registered as a legal entity in Estonia with its head office in Tallinn. It operates under two licenses issued by the country’s financial regulator.
Check out a review on AssetStream by Mohd. Shoaib, CEO of Digital Notice
The first license grants the company the right to provide services of exchanging cryptocurrencies against any fiat currencies; the second one permits to offer services of a cryptocurrency wallet.
Both licenses are permanent and check against the official database, which adds credibility to AssetStream.
In addition, AssetStream has two strategic partners: Pico Thailand, an association of Thai entrepreneurs, and CreditOk, an aspiring fintech company that works on creating a comprehensive credit risk system.
Beneficiaries Of The Platform
Rewarding – An offering of 0.75%-4% monthly yields on money loaned through intermediary reduction, therefore, costs passing on the benefits to the lenders.
Diversified – AssetStream assembles SME’s across different sectors while allowing lenders to diversify their investments and prevent risks.
Reliable – Blockchain technology embedded within AssetStream allows for a self-regulated community with verified profiles. This ensures in risk reduction with not so profitable loans.
Regular – There are also shorter-term projects that payouts much faster and on a daily basis over several times a day basis.
Flexibility – Offerings for suggested interested rate, while creating contracts on a day to basis. Directly offers suggested interest rate, create contracts and the conditions to the market without any intermediary requirements.
Quick and Effortless – Small loan requests will automatically be matched with lenders resulting in a near-instant loan approval along with the application process being simple yet secure.
Accessible – with the accessibility of the loans through the AssetStream platform it allows SME borrowers to avoid Loan sharks and informal lenders which can cause issues.
Empowerment – Using the AssetStream’s platform one will be rewarded with a cut of the interest as a lender along with the option to asses multiple borrowers and improve your returns.
Collateralization and Support – All borrowers have completed KYC creating a verified community. In the case of an NPL, AssetStream will compensate the lender for the collateral of that loan along with providing on-going support for the local agency if there is any legal process.
The Blockchain-Based Microfinance Platform
AssetStream aims to provide its services not only to its lenders and borrowers also to the agencies and businesses it collaborates with. The platform essentially generates its funds from the purchase of AST tokens.
Microfinance has been quite successful in enabling the poor access to credit and other financial services. A World Bank report cites that up to 20% of the adult population in Africa and Asia get all their financial services through micro-financing entities.
AssetStream works over the following ways:-
KYC verification – KYC documents such as ID card with photos, photo with company name, provision of company documents such as proxy letter, company registration, etc. Last drawn salary, address with an attachment of bank statement or other utility bills. The more credentials added by the user the higher the credit score will be therefore the amount of borrowing. The borrower can also create a KYC profile to use in the future for loans and make the process faster. Lenders will also be required to complete the KYC process to have a fully verified network.
Borrower – A proposal is put forward by the borrower to the platform of the loan amount with conditions on the loan such as interest rate, duration with minimum borrowing requirement.
Lender – After the lender is verified, the lender can look into multiple SME’s on the platform while deciding to whom to fund based on the loan conditions and project nature through a ‘Manual search’ or the ‘automatic matchmaking system’ (currently at a developmental phase) The lenders requirements can be executed and will receive interest for the loan.
Local Agency – The local agency will act as the exchange of money from the AST from the lender to the Fiat conversion the SME will require. Moreover, they can conduct an additional verification process to receive and verify the SME’s documents while making the fiat lending contract and creating another security layer in the ecosystem.
NPL – In the case of a nonperforming loan there is a process which is followed which includes a ‘Grace Period’, Late Fees, Negotiation phase, legal action and then the collateral AST will be unlocked to recuperate losses.
CreditOk is a Thai fintech start-up aiming to unlock working capital for micro-entrepreneurs and enterprises around South East Asia. The collaboration between AssetStream and CreditOK benefits both. In the meantime, CreditOK provides a working capital while improving cash flow through deep credit scoring with an alternative data & lending platform.
PICO is a licensed money lending company backed by the Thai Government to tackle the issue of loan sharks and informal loans. There is over 500 PICO finance companies throughout Thailand. The AssetStream platform can provide a competitive and profitable loan with a low NPL rate to PICO’s lenders.
Why AssetStream Could Go Mainstream?
Microfinance is a powerful entity for global poverty removal specifically for the lower-income group clients that it intends to serve. Assetstream dips into an underserved market opportunity while intersecting it with their specialized expertise.
The platform intends to be useful not just for the usual borrowers and lender but also to business agencies that it intends to partner with. The funds will be financed from the purchase of AST tokens.
The AST tokens are represented with a value of 0.01 USD within the AssetStream ecosystem to maintain stability. AST prices outside are subjected to a fair market value reflected on the secondary exchanges.
AssetStream’s goal is to empower the unbanked to overcome poverty within a legal structure while reaping the benefits out of blockchain technology. The aim is in reaching to the unbanked people for easy lending through its peer-to-peer microfinance platform while aiming to eradicate poverty.
Inaccessibility of banks and other financial services in developing economies can cause the communities to revert back to loan sharks. This overall becomes an unsustainable and stagnant growth cycle. Loan sharks can be eradicated if the community takes the lead through the microfinance platform. Risks can be reduced by eliminating the intermediaries benefitting both borrowers and the investors.
Small businesses are rejected in loan approval mainly because banks do not find them to be profitable. The mandate of AssetStream is eliminating the middlemen to provide financial services to the unbanked. Moreover, the hefty physical procedures in a conventional financial institution make it easier to access AssetPlatform’s microfinance services.
One just needs to have an internet connection to access AccessPlatform while accessing an array of microcredits.
AssetStream can have a huge success rate by relieving the unbanked people and mitigating the risks and challenges posed by a traditional financial institution. One can invest in the platform as a lender, start one’s own business while growing through loans acquired by AssetSteam. Moreover, the platform has other benefits such as simplicity in transactions, transparency, and accountability while making it reliable in terms of reaching consensus by lenders.
AssetStream overall is a sustainable microfinance platform advocating for poverty reduction while providing an alternative, high-yield, peer-to-peer microfinance platform for everyone.
For more information on AssetStream check out the following links:
References: Crypto-rating | ICOnow | Cryptopolitan | Bitcoin Exchange Guide