Customers have started in the past two or three months to switch from banks to non-banking consumer lenders in spite of the higher prices, said executive directors of some of the key market players. One of the standouts is BNP Paribas Personal Finance, whose customer base has expanded since banks started to scrutinise loan applicants.
The Christmas rush is also sending shoppers off to non-banking lenders, said Vasil Chalashkanov, executive director of the BNP Paribas-owned company, which beefed up communication strategies to promote the new brand. Bank customers have started to trickle into non-banking companies, said Valentin Galabov, executive director of TBI Credit.
However, non-banking financial institutions are also stringent about loan applicants. New clients need to earn three or four times their loan installment to be approved, said Galabov. Chalashkanov said BNP Paribas Personal Finance was tougher on customers with bigger outstanding debts and approved between 50% and 80% of all applications.