Access to commercial loans can help Cambodia-based enterprises scale up their operations, or launch a new product, but for this financial institutions need a complete picture of an enterprises’ credit history.
Credit Bureau Cambodia (CBC) Chief Executive Officer Oeur Sothearoath told Southeast Asia Globe about its commercial credit reporting platform – launched in July 2019- which aims to do exactly that.
“After six to seven years of implementation and educating the market on consumer credit reporting,” Mr. Oeur explained “now it’s time to launch the commercial credit reporting platform.” The consumer credit reporting platform launched in 2012 to provide information on individual credit history to financial institutions and end consumers.
With a richer dataset, Credit Managers can streamline credit risk assessments on enterprises applying for commercial loans, thereby easing access to finance and creating opportunities for further economic growth.
The platform comprises two datasets: company details and owner details. The former includes “registration date and name, company name and expiry date, internal credit information such as loans with other institutions, and even the payment behaviour of that company,” explained Mr. Oeur. The latter includes data on the company owner – whether an individual or a corporate- plus shareholders, directors, and Chief Executive officers.
Furthermore, a commercial credit platform for Cambodia could allow the country to climb up global business environment ratings, like the World Bank Group’s Ease of Doing Business Index, Mr. Oeur explained, “which could attract further foreign direct investment in Cambodia.”
The product has been in development since February 2018, in close collaboration with CBC regulator the National Bank of Cambodia, also known as the central bank, who coordinated capture and submission of data from banks and microfinance institutions to the CBC. “Without that data,” Mr. Oeur said, “we could not develop the platform, so first we give our appreciation to the central bank.”
CBC’s members have responded positively to the platform so far. Of some 160 members, “there are around 60 institutions engaged in the commercial credit reporting platform,” Mr. Oeur said.
While making big strides with the platform, the CBC is thinking big with its strategic 3-year plan. “We are planning ahead with a lot of things,” said Mr. Oeur, “for example, we plan to launch hybrid reports, commercial monitoring alerts, and commercial data analytics report to allow financial institutions to gauge the performance of commercial loans in Cambodia. The ultimate goal is to launch commercial scoring, which blends 4-5 page commercial credit reports into a single commercial score.”
For 2019, the focus is on fine-tuning the platform and improving data quality. “All of this will take time to work with the stakeholders,” Mr. Oeur explained.