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Hong Kong Startup Raises $105 Million to Expand Lending Business

A Hong Kong startup called Oriente raised $105 million as it expands online lending operations in Southeast Asia and develops new products and technologies for markets like Indonesia and the Philippines.

Oriente was founded in 2017 by Skype Inc. co-founder Geoffrey Prentice, former Chief Operating Officer Hubert Tai, and Lawrence Chu, founder of BlackPine Group. It provides loans, often $50 to $100, to small businesses that would otherwise struggle to get money, and is racing to roll out additional financial services for the fragmented markets of Southeast Asia. Customers can apply for loans through a mobile app or offline.