Validus, a Singapore-based lending platform for SMEs, is acquiring CitiBusiness’ loan portfolio for an undisclosed amount to bolster its top-line revenue and customer base and expand its growing loan book.
Nikhilesh Goel, co-founder and Group CEO of Validus, told TechCrunch that Validus expects to create synergies with the loan portfolio of CitiBusiness, Citi Singapore’s small banking unit. It is a portfolio of loans to hundreds of small businesses in Singapore, which is the target market Validus serves, Goel added.
“With this acquisition, we will not only be able to further digitally serve the financing need of these SMEs to grow but also offer them business accounts, spend management solutions, and payment services to manage their business,” he said.
Goel also said that the deal will be financed through a securitization facility Validus is arranging with a number of global financial institutions. The acquisition will be completed in April 2022.
This is Validus’ second acquisition, Goel noted. Last year, it acquired KlearCard, Singapore’s business payments and expense management platform.
In June 2021, Citi Singapore was reported to be closing its CitiBusiness unit, which serves small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) clients. Citigroup also has agreed to sell its Southeast Asia retail operations in Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam to Singapore-based United Overseas Bank for about $3.7 billion in January.
“The sale of the CitiBusiness loan portfolio in Singapore follows our previous announcement to wind down our small business banking unit after a strategic review,” said Roy Phua, head of mortgage and CitiBusiness of Citibank Singapore. “Our priority is to ensure a smooth transition of our consumers and loans to Validus, who we believe can continue to serve them and meet their needs.”