Metropol Credit Reference Bureau (MCRB) has today launched its new product delivery platform Metropol Crystobol, the first of its kind in Uganda to help borrowers control their credit information by having direct access to bureau products conveniently at their disposal via their mobile phones.
According to Sam Omukoko, the Metropol Group Managing Director, customers will access the service by dialling *243# and following the message prompts.
“The customer needs to key in their Financial Card number in order to proceed and register on Crystobol. After registration, one is entitled to a free annual credit report,” said Omukoko during Metropol Crystobol launch at Kampala Serena Hotel.
Omukoko said Crystobol service will empower borrowers to take control of their creditworthiness by allowing them easy access to affordable credit, negotiate favourable credit terms with lenders and get the freedom to choose their preferred lender.
He added that this will significantly impact on the lender-borrower relations in the Ugandan market, where they will see borrowers obtain increased bargaining power by taking advantage of their positive credit profiles.
Metropol Crystobol has four bureau products that include a Credit report, Listing status, Metro- score and Who has listed me.
Omukoko said a credit report is a detailed account of one’s lifetime borrowing with all current credit providers and their performance in terms of repayment.
“Under the listing status, borrowers will get to know their status as reported by various lenders. Green means one has no credit history, black- one has a negative (default) credit history and Gold will mean one has a positive credit history,” said Omukoko.
The Metro-score will measure one’s creditworthiness and the likelihood that they will meet their financial obligations while Who has listed me will have a list of all the lenders who have contributed information about a client to Metropol Credit Reference Bureau.
In 2015, the Bank of Uganda granted Metropol Uganda (Ltd) a Credit Reference Bureau license in Uganda.
This followed the opening of credit reference services to competition and the Bank of Uganda’s prior notice in the media inviting applications for credit reference Bureau licenses.
Compuscan Uganda Ltd were the only Credit Reference Service Bureau provider in Uganda after they launched in 2013.
Metropol was established in Kenya in 1996 as a business Information and credit management company. In 2006, it partnered with GCR to provide credit rating services that enable corporates to raise capital and meet their financing needs.
It is licensed in Kenya as well by the Central Bank of Kenya to provide Credit Reference Bureau (CRB) Services to ALL banks in Kenya.
Their CRB services leverage full-file credit information sharing and alternative data sources from MFIs, SACCOs, HELB, Utilities, Mobile phone companies and providers of goods and services on credit to help customers improve their access to finance and increase the credit providers’ capacity to lend profitably to more customers.
They also support Credit providers in managing Credit Risk throughout the credit life cycle in order to increase efficiency and lower risk of default and thus maximize profit.
At the same time, they provide the credit consumer with tools that will help negotiate favorable terms when applying and managing their credit. In that way, they provide a Total Customer Solution.
BY PAUL TENTENA