Micro, small, and medium enterprises are the backbones of many emerging markets in Southeast Asia. However, most of them don’t have access to bank financing. In 2020, the funding gap for MSMEs in the region reached an estimated value of USD 300 billion. This funding deficit has created a market opportunity for a slew of peer-to-peer fintech lenders in the region, among them, Singapore-based Funding Societies.
The company was founded by Singaporean Kelvin Teo and Indonesian Reynold Wijaya in 2015. The two met when they studied at Harvard Business School in 2014. Hailing from Southeast Asia, Teo and Wijaya wanted to create a tech company to deliver “real change and positive impact to people in the region,” especially targeting underserved sectors such as small and medium businesses.
After launching in Singapore in 2015, Funding Societies quickly expanded to Indonesia in 2016, followed by Malaysia in the same year. In February this year, the firm launched a crowdfunding platform in Thailand after obtaining a license from the country’s Securities and Exchange Commission. In Indonesia, the firm operates under the brand Modalku, which means “my capital” in Bahasa Indonesia.