Capitec set to increase Avafin stake for R535 million

Capitec is set to increase its stake in international fintech company Avafin to 97.96% for R534.49 million.

Capitec informed shareholders today that the South African Reserve Bank’s Prudential Authority approved the acquisition of a controlling stake in Avafin, an international online consumer lending group.

Therefore, Capitec increased its shareholding in Avafin from 40.66% to 97.69% at a purchase price of €26.3 million (R535 million).

On 24 March 2017, Capitec bought an initial 40% interest in Cream Finance Holding, which has now been renamed Avafin Holding, domiciled in Cyprus. 

 Avafin provides online consumer loan products in Poland, Czechia, Latvia, Spain and Mexico.

“The acquisition of a minority interest in Avafin in 2017 provided Capitec with the opportunity to gain experience in the international online consumer credit market, management of operations and risk in foreign markets and international diversification of Capitec’s income sources,” the bank said.

Avafin management will continue to hold the residual interest in the business, in line with Capitec’s philosophy of management ownership, it said.

The transaction is still subject to the approval of the Reserve Bank’s Financial Surveillance Department and the Polish competition authority.

Capitec listed its key reasons for acquiring the controlling interest in Avafin –

  • Strong culture fit – Avafin is a small challenger, taking on large market leaders by focusing on niche solutions for clients through the efficient use of a sophisticated, scalable, technology-driven online consumer credit platform and sound credit risk management principles.
  • Geographical diversification – the business model developed from a high dependency on a single market to successful operations in multiple markets.
  • Excellent management team – management and staff are innovative with a pragmatic approach and responsive to changes in the diverse geographical environments in which they operate
  • The business has developed successfully despite multiple challenges, including Covid-19, the Ukrainian crisis and regulatory changes in a number of countries where Avafin operates.
  • Avafin is agile, and management has a proven track record for timely identification and swift implementation of necessary changes to its systems, processes and credit risk appetite.
  • The efficiency in adapting and managing change has led to improvements in Avafin’s competitive position and market share after overcoming each of the above challenges.

“Avafin is closely aligned with Capitec’s client-centric retail business model and well-positioned for growth,” the bank said.