Two years after their launch, new online banks linked to internet titans Alibaba and Tencent have doled out more than 300 billion yuan ($44.1 billion) in their brief lifetimes by targeting millions of entrepreneurs with microscopic loans that often carry terms of just days. According to Caixin, both banks are rapidly carving out a niche by targeting a group that would have traditionally been served by credit card issuers in a more-mature Western market. Such cards, which typically carry high interest rates and are meant to be paid off monthly, are still a rarity in China. Since launching in2015, WeBank, which is 30% owned by Tencent, has lent out more than 200 billion yuan, with an average loan size of just 8,000 yuan. Not far behind was Ant Financial. Since getting its own online bank license in June 2015, Ant’s MyBank has lent out some 115 billion yuan, with loans averaging about 17,000 yuan.
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