Mainstream banks are increasingly raiding the digital space, angling for a bite of the fast growing market.

Prime Bank is the latest of lenders that have joined the fray with the launch of short-term digital loans, a move bound to heighten competition in the sector.  

The bank’s customers will access mobile loans of between Sh5,000 and Sh150,000 with repayment periods of 30 days. Two months ago, the bank launched a lending platform, PrimeKopa and mobile app PrimeMobi.

Mobile banking has grown into a favourite platform become the cornerstone of serving the masses, enhancing convenience to customers while reducing the need for banks to expand their brick-and-mortar branches.

“PrimeKopa seeks to provide customers access to mobile loans with flexibility in terms of repayment in a seamless, paperless, and digital manner,” said Prime Bank chief executive Bharat Jani.

“We believe PrimeKopa will offer customers a differentiated digital banking experience.”

Customers will get the funds instant upon approval. The platform allows partial and early payment of loans with no paper work or need to visit a branch.

“We continue to heavily invest in diversified delivery channels to ensure our customers access banking services both conveniently and efficiently,” noted Mr Jani

Other banks reaping big from digital lending are KCB, Absa Equity, KNCBA and Co-op Bank. 

The shift to digital banking was accelerated following Covid-19 pandemic as people stayed at home to adhere to movement restrictions imposed as part of efforts to curb the pandemic.

Prime Bank partnered with London-based fintech SimbaPay, to launch an instant international money transfer to bank accounts or mobile wallets across Africa, Europe, and Asia to more than 18 countries including USA, Australia, India, United Kingdom, China (WeChat Pay), Germany, Uganda among others.

The bank also integrated the E-Citizen payments on the PrimeMobi to enable customers make payments through PesaLink for services rendered by government agencies such as the Department of Immigration, the  National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA), Ministry of Lands, and  State Law Office.