The remaining 75% is the battleground Chinese fintech companies are racing toward. They say that with big data they can provide alternative credit scores to the unscorable. More-established contenders include China Rapid Finance and CreditEase, and Yongqianbao has joined the fray. The winning strategy, they say, is twofold–targeting the right potential borrowers and developing the best data model to provide customized loans to each loan applicant.
That the Chinese have leapfrogged a generation of consumer finance is clear. With spending increasing, credit card use per capita actually declined from 0.34 in 2014 to 0.29 at the end of 2015, according to People’s Bank of China. In that same year, however, mobile payment users grew 65%. By last May, Alibaba’s Alipay surpassed cash and become the most frequently used form of payment. According to FT Confidential Research, 80% of Chinese consumers in first-tier cities have used Alipay while 79% have used cash. For the whole year, $5.5 trillion third-party mobile payments were completed in China.