CEE23: How to accelerate digitalization of SME lending

How to accelerate digitalization of SME lending – this was the topic of one of the discussion panels during the latest CEE23 SME Banking Conference, which took place in Krakow (Poland) on November 29-30, 2023.

Before the discussion started, Christian Ruehmer (Q-Lana) and Marcin Woch (Algolytics Technologies) presented their views on how to digitalize SME Lending and automate the decision-making process.

Christian, during his presentation, stressed that digital strategy should be part of the business strategy. Banks should decide first which risk appetite they have for SME customers, and after that, think about the products and tools SME customers fill up that risk appetite.

Marcin talked about the importance of having an analytical platform for SME risk management and antifraud management. Digitalization of SME lending allows for automated customer onboarding and shortens the time of the onboarding from 2-3 days up to 2-3 minutes; usage of automated data collection instead of asking the customer hundreds of documents for loan application; making decisions based on AI/ML algorithms and low code development allow to make rapid changes.

After that, Michal Pawlik (panel’s moderator) discussed with the panelists the pace of digitalization in SME lending in the CEE region. Jiri Lexa shared their experience in Lemonero of expanding embedded business from The Czech Republic to the European market. Balazs Topor shared their latest results in Raiffeisen Bank International on the digitalization of SME lending process in their networking banks in Albania, Romania, Bosnia & Herzegovina, and Croatia. Some of the transformation highlights that Balazs shared:

  • Decision Time: Reduced from 6.7 days to just 5 minutes!
  • Disbursement Time: Slashed from 7.5 days to 15 minutes!
  • Fields Asked from Customers: Streamlined from 690 to only 3!
  • Processing Cost: Dropped by a remarkable 90%!

Kamil Goslawski (CRIF Poland) talked about ESG data and its role in SME lending.

As the final question panelists discussed the future financial products for SMEs.

Watch the recording of the panel discussion: