WeLab unveils strategic actions for growth and profitability

WeLab unveils strategic actions for growth and profitability

WeLab unveils strategic actions for growth and profitability

5 min read

WeLab, one of the leading pan-Asian fintech platforms, announced the strategic actions in Southeast Asia markets and Hong Kong to propel growth, scale and profitability.

These strategic initiatives are fortifying a robust foundation to support WeLab’s accelerated growth. WeLab’s overseas expansion strategy is on the fast track, as its Hong Kong-developed fintech solution are exported, localised and well-received in Southeast Asia.

The group has seen remarkable early traction with Bank Saqu in Indonesia. This second digital bank of WeLab has achieved one million customers within six months of its launch in November 2023. With more localised and innovative banking products in the pipeline, WeLab is confident that Bank Saqu will become a key driving force in the group’s Southeast Asia strategy.

Bank Saqu has been meticulously built around the needs of local individuals and solopreneurs, a rapidly growing segment in Indonesia. Over 60% of Bank Saqu’s customers are solopreneurs, drawn to the bank by its multiple innovative features. The signature “pockets” (“Saku” in Bahasa) feature, designed for customers to separate their finances for different purposes, has seen remarkable adoption with about 40% of active customers created their own additional pockets in their accounts to manage their finances.

The enthusiastic market reception of Bank Saqu’s products proves the bank is well-positioned to effectively solve the pain points of solopreneurs, indicating a promising trajectory for future growth. With localised, innovative financial services, Bank Saqu is poised to serve over 200 million underbanked and unbanked Indonesians, aiming to become the preferred partner for MSMEs (micro, small and medium enterprises).

Southeast Asia to be the next growth engine

Beyond Indonesia, WeLab is actively exploring and evaluating new opportunities across Southeast Asia. The group is strategising several exciting expansion plans for exponential growth in the coming five years. In addition to the collaboration with HSBC to explore delivering world-class customer journeys and innovative product offerings in Southeast Asia, WeLab is concurrently in discussion with multiple conglomerates in markets such as Malaysia, Vietnam, the Philippines and Thailand, to deliver its tech-driven financial services across diverse business models such as B2C, B2B, and B2B2X. Moreover, the expansion of TaaS (technology-as-a-service) operations will increase impact and reach, also creates new revenue streams for WeLab Group.

Simon Loong, founder and group CEO of WeLab, commented: “WeLab’s journey has always been about leveraging technology to push the boundaries of what’s possible in financial services digitally. We are highly encouraged by the solid traction seen in Indonesia – reaching 100 million Indonesian digital banking customers in a record time. We are confident in driving growth momentum in Indonesia and beyond by continuously delivering our innovative, Hong Kong-developed fintech solutions to users across Asia. The combined Hong Kong and Indonesia digital banks will have more than 1.7 million users, making us one of the largest digital bank operators in Asia. With about 700 million people of Southeast Asia having high demand for digital financial services in sight, we firmly believe the future of digital banking is bright, and we are well-positioned to capture the opportunities.”

Enhanced synergy through optimised corporate structure in Hong Kong

Whilst the overseas expansion plans are making significant strides, WeLab also has a plan to take its Hong Kong businesses to the next phase of growth. In the Hong Kong market, the group’s purely online lending platform, WeLend, has been leading the digital lending sector for years. Since the launch of WeLab Bank in 2020, the group’s loan portfolio has demonstrated impressive growth momentum as the two entities have further grown the portfolio by nearly 300%, solidifying WeLab’s leading position in Hong Kong.

As part of the broader growth strategy, WeLab has completed a corporate reorganisation whereby WeLend is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of WeLab Bank. This strategic move aims to elevate operational synergy and efficiency between the two entities, leveraging their established market positions to unlock new growth opportunities. Post-reorganisation, WeLab Bank and WeLend will continue to offer their distinctive products and services under their respective brands.

The corporate reorganisation has been completed in early June without any redundancies. It also demonstrates WeLab’s another uniqueness – being the first and only fintech group in Hong Kong capable of integrating its digital lending platform into its digital banking arm.

Tat Lee, chief executive of WeLab Bank, added: “WeLab Bank has been on the fast track to upscale its business operations and pursue profitability. Benefiting from the reorganisation, WeLab Bank now serves over 650,000 users in total. We expect to generate an additional net profit of $100 million over the next five years. The scale of WeLab Bank’s lending operations has become one of the largest among digital banks in Asia. With the accelerated momentum, the bank is poised to be profitable in 2025 and become one of the first profitable digital banks in Asia.”

Riding on the even stronger momentum after the reorganisation, WeLab’s Hong Kong businesses will continue to exhibit robust growth and support WeLab’s development of tech-driven financial services, delivering innovative solutions through the group’s regional expansion.

With the overseas expansion plans in the pipeline and optimised organisation structure, WeLab has built a robust foundation for unprecedented growth and innovation. With a bold vision and relentless drive, WeLab will continue to lead the digital finance transformation and setting the stage to redefine the future of finance in the dynamic Asia Pacific region.

Re-disseminated by The Asian Banker

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by : on 2024-06-20 10:43:00

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