Marks Rate

Nairobi, Kenya

Leap² Innovation Challenge on FinTech - highest crowdfunded amount. Theme: FinTech.

"It takes a village to grow a business". Marks Rate is defined as an opportunity for small and medium enterprises to obtain immediate financing at favorable rate and for individuals whether your average saver or investor to earn a higher interest rate against the current investment options available.

The founder tells: I was a banker for 15 years and joined a company that my colleague George had started. I was previously the financial controller and later moved to the head the risk department while George was the IT administrator. We have been running our company Systems Hub for the last two years and due to the challenges we faced with raising financing we decided to build our own crowdfunding platform which we called Marks Rate.

The name is derived from my son Mark who inspired me to be able to save more for his future by investing more. Due to the limited investment options available in the country I realised that we could be able to negotiate a rate of return based on the margins that small businesses made on their purchase orders, contracts awarded or invoices discounted.

In this way we are able to ensure that any business always has working capital to carry out its orders without the need for collateral or security and at the same time any individual can earn a higher rate of return averaging 2%-10% per month by funding those businesses.

At Marks Rate we aim to change how the general public views investing in small businesses as well as how financing of SMEs is done in the country. We aim to raise Kes 10.450m which will be held as the reserve fund for any delays in payments from the businesses we fund.

We have been told quite a number of times that we are mad for what we are doing but you have to be absolutely crazy and believe in yourselves and know that you are in the right space at the right time to change how a society views investing and financing small businesses.