Where are they now: Pollen

What do you do when a business opportunity comes your way and you need funding fast? For a long time, this frequently asked question in South Africa’s small to medium enterprise (SME) sector went unanswered, leaving many businesses without the funds needed to accelerate growth. That was until Pollen Finance, an innovative online lending company based in Stellenbosch pioneered the use of financial technology (fintech) as a solution to the problem.

Founded in 2015 by CEO Louis du Plessis, Pollen supplies short-term, unsecured business loans via its online platform. Cutting-edge fintech enables the company to approve and pay out loans in just three days, empowering SMEs to seize opportunities when they come knocking.

Four years later, the company boasts a track record of not only meeting its targets, but surpassing them. It delivered R100 million in loans in just eight months from launch and recently became the first online loan provider to hit the R1 billion mark.

“This shows that South African business owners are out there investing in what they do. We have already loaned R1 billion but I still think we have tapped into only a small segment of the SME market that is in need of funding,” says Louis. – Nell Hofmeyr

Catch up with these other Stellenbosch creatives and innovators that are making waves around town, South Africa and beyond: