Oportun Financial Corporation (Nasdaq: OPRT), a mission-driven financial institution providing inclusive, affordable financial services, today announced it has submitted an application with the OCC to establish Oportun Bank, N.A.
"A national bank charter will allow us to reach the estimated 100 million low- and-moderate income (LMI) consumers in the U.S. that we seek to serve. Today, Oportun maintains dozens of state licenses in order to offer affordable and responsible financial services to LMI communities. As a national bank, we can efficiently provide the security of dealing with a federally regulated and supervised bank to our customers and other stakeholders,” said Raul Vazquez, CEO of Oportun. “Our existing and potential customers are hard-working people who have historically been shut out of the financial mainstream. By providing the responsible banking services that these communities need, Oportun is advancing the cause of economic equity and financial inclusion for LMI individuals.”
Mr. Vazquez offered extended commentary in a blog post that was also published today.
The proposed bank will be a wholly-owned subsidiary of Oportun Financial Corporation, a public company incorporated in Delaware with its principal place of business in San Carlos, Calif. If approved, Oportun Bank, N.A. will serve customers in all 50 states with consumer lending and deposit services. Oportun’s core product today is a fully amortized personal loan with an APR that is capped at 36%. Oportun Bank will similarly cap all of its credit products at a 36% APR.
Oportun’s customers earn on average a gross income of $46,000 per year, with many of them supporting a family on this modest income. When first applying for credit at Oportun, the majority of Oportun’s customers, historically, either had no credit score or a credit history too limited to accurately score. Using a proprietary scoring and risk model, backed by machine learning and almost 15 years of data, Oportun has been able to provide affordable and responsible loans to LMI individuals who currently are excluded from, or not well served by, mainstream financial institutions.
Established in 2005, Oportun has extended more than $9.3 billion in credit, primarily to people living in LMI communities. Since the company’s founding, Oportun has saved those consumers more than $1.8 billion in interest and fees when compared to other options typically available to people with little or no credit history. By reporting to the major credit bureaus, the company has also helped more than 870,000 people establish the credit history that allows them to pursue their ambitions.
In addition, Oportun recently announced a partnership with a national bank that will allow Oportun to reach LMI consumers beyond its current state-license footprint as early as next year. The partnership will make affordable and responsible personal loans, capped at a 36% APR, available to consumers across the nation and is expected to launch in mid-2021.