Elevate Announces Customer Financial Progression Milestones

– Fintech company innovating for the middle class reports 55,000
customers have improved their credit scores appreciably and 20,000 are
now eligible for rates that are 50 percent or less than their original
loan rates

today announced two major customer financial progression milestones.
More than 55,000 customers of Elevate’s RISE product have improved their
credit scores appreciably. Additionally, over 20,000 RISE customers are
now eligible to receive a reduction in their APR of 50 percent or more.
These accomplishments come as Elevate continues its commitment to
helping consumers by reporting loan activity to a major credit bureau,
offering rates that can go down over time and by providing access to
free financial wellness resources, including free credit monitoring and
financial literacy tools.

“We believe in helping all of our customers work toward a better
financial future. That’s why we are committed to our mission of ‘Good
Today, solving immediate financial needs – and Better Tomorrow, helping
improve customers’ long-term financial situations.’ Progression through
rates that can go down over time, reporting customers’ behavior to a
major credit bureau, and providing access to financial literacy tools
are all key to helping them make real tangible progress to their
long-term financial health.” said Ken Rees, CEO of Elevate.

RISE is a state-licensed online, unsecured
loan product designed with the needs of nonprime customers in mind. RISE
loans are originally priced to risk. Customers are eligible to receive
50 percent off of their rate on subsequent loans after 24 months of
payments, eventually achieving a further reduction to 36 percent. Today,
42 months after the product was launched, over 20,000 customers have
received or are eligible to receive a 50 percent a rate reduction and
over 4,000 customers are eligible for an APR of 36 percent.

Unlike many traditional lenders serving non-prime consumers, such as
payday lenders, Elevate reports RISE borrowers’ behavior to a major
credit bureau. Non-prime consumers – of which there are more than 160
million in the United States, a majority of Americans – are
significantly underserved by the financial industry, and credit is a
critically important factor in their lives.

More than 2,500 of the 55,000 customers with improved credit scores are
now considered prime by Elevate, with scores of 700 or greater.

“We know from serving this segment for many years that nonprime
consumers want to make financial progress, not just borrow money, when
they take out a loan,” said Ken Rees. “While we realize that our own
practice of reporting to a prime credit agency is almost certainly not
the only factor in our customers’ improving credit health, we are proud
of these customers’ accomplishments.”

Customers have noticed their credit scores rising. “I chose RISE because
I saw it could help me build my credit. Without any credit history it’s
hard to get the money you need when you need it, and RISE came through
for me. After I finished paying off my RISE loan, I saw my credit score
had jumped over 40 points,” said Jay Lewis of Cincinnati, Ohio. “I was
ecstatic because having better credit is key to so many things in
everyday life. RISE has helped me overcome that roadblock.”

How important is credit to nonprime consumers? Elevate’s Center
for The New Middle Class
recently studied
the matter and found that, compared to prime consumers, nonprime were:

  • Nine times more likely to have been turned down for credit within the
    last 12 months
  • Six times more likely to have been denied a job because of low credit
    within the last 12 months
  • 12 times more likely to have been denied an apartment because of lack
    of credit within the last 12 months
  • 10 times more likely to say they “couldn’t make financial progress”
    within the last 12 months because of their credit

Additionally, 70 percent of nonprime consumers say that it’s important
that a lending product helps them build credit.

“Credit is singularly important to these consumers – many of whom are in
their financial situations through no real fault of their own,” said
Jonathan Walker, Executive Director of Elevate’s Center for the New
Middle Class. “Because of a lack of credit, many are one broken arm or
car repair away from financial disaster. Improving their credit
standings can change this greatly.”

About the Research

Elevate worked with the major credit bureau to which it reports,
gathering anonymized data on RISE customers. Elevate reviewed the
VantageScore® 3.0 risk scores of its RISE customers at the time they
took out their first loan in 2014-15 and compared that with their credit
scores as of Sept. 30, 2016. Customers included only those who remain in
good standing with RISE as of Sept. 30; those who defaulted were not
included. The bureau identified six credit score ranges and determined
how many RISE customers moved up appreciably, meaning at least one
category from when they took out their first loan in the time period:

  • <500. Consumers in this score range are not eligible for an FHA
  • 500-579. Consumers are eligible for limited mortgage financing.
  • 580-619. Consumers are eligible for maximum financing, according to
    FHA guidelines.
  • 620-679. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will buy loans of consumers in
    this range.
  • 680-699. Consumers are eligible for a substantial reduction to loan
    level price adjustments and borrower-paid mortgage insurance premium.
  • 700+. Consumers are considered prime (by Elevate).

The number of customers who have reached the necessary number of
payments to receive a rate reduction was calculated by tabulating the
number of accounts at the number of payments necessary.

  • 24 months of payments are required to receive 50 percent off of the
    customer’s original APR
  • 36 months of payments are required to reach 36 percent

About Elevate’s Center for the New Middle Class

Elevate’s Center for the New Middle Class conducts research, engages in
dialogue, and builds cooperation to generate understanding of the
behaviors, attitudes, and challenges of America’s growing “New Middle
Class.” For more information, visit: http://www.elevate.com/NewMiddleClass

About Elevate

Elevate has originated more than $3 billion in nonprime credit to 1.4
million consumers to date. Its innovative online credit solutions
provide immediate relief to customers today and help them build a
brighter financial future. The company is committed to rewarding
borrowers’ good financial behavior with features like interest rates
that can go down over time, free financial training and free credit
monitoring. Elevate’s suite of groundbreaking credit products includes
RISE, Sunny and Elastic. The company is privately held and is backed by
respected Silicon Valley venture capital firms including Sequoia Capital
and Technology Crossover Ventures. For more information, visit: http://www.elevate.com/.


Ishviene Arora, 917 765 8720