A huge swathe of our population is missing out on opportunities due to outdated systems which cannot assess people’s credit-worthiness.

The growing army of ‘gig economy’ freelance workers across sectors including taxis, deliveries, care, journalism, public relations and coding may have flexibility and independence, but little or no job security. They also largely miss out on benefits such as holidays and sick pay.

One of the biggest issues they face is accessing finance for – among many things – mortgages and cars.

“I was head of data for a FinTech firm that offered loans to sole proprietors and small enterprises. I was in charge of creating their credit scoring model,” Ali Hamriti tells BusinessCloud.

“During my time there, I observed how challenging it is for independent workers to obtain and share the necessary data required by financial institutions to fairly evaluate and score their job and income records. Many miss out on chances as a consequence. 

“I came to see that the system needed to change since the old, conventional systems were leading to unjust decision-making because they were unable to take into account all the data records and, consequently, the full picture of a person’s solvency.” 

Hamriti made it his mission to create a solution that not only helps with lending, but also provides self-employed workers with inclusive access to financial services. Rollee was founded in France in 2021.

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Computer says no

According to recent research, an alarming 70% of gig workers have been denied a loan, despite having good credit scores. More than half of these workers have missed out on opportunities such as buying a new home due to being declined by building societies and banks, despite having the affordability.

“We provide financial institutions with a safe access point to securely access employment and income data of all European workers based on their consent,” explains the CEO. “Our goal is to tackle the disparities in financial service systems that were designed to serve ‘traditional’ customers who have one job and one source of income to verify. 

“For workers with multiple jobs, and as more and more people start to diversify their income sources, this data is dispersed and stored in many different platforms. Our API platform gives financial institutions access to the aggregated data they need to get a real overview over their total income and employment situation and, as a result, to conduct more business with prospective customers.” 

Data control

Rollee also gives consumers control over their own data, enabling them to share their data in a safe manner. The platform provides the gateway that shares data between two parties, such as employment status; history and activity; gross and net income; and tax.

“One of our customers, a car financing company, has automated its income verification process through our dashboard,” says Hamriti. “We also work with consumer lending companies and mortgage brokers to streamline their credit decision-making or accountants to automate their tax computation.”

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The company is now building its UK presence, working with financial services companies and banks.

“We are on an exciting journey into the UK market and welcoming a growing number of UK-based customers,” continues Hamriti. “We are continuing to expand into the UK to address the continuing market challenge of financial struggles faced by gig workers. 

“We are always open to innovation and have received high interest from our customers based in the UK.”

Rollee raised a €4 million seed round in March 2022 and employs more than 25 people in Europe and South America.

“Our market proposition has been the cornerstone for achieving our objectives but the seed round has also been highly beneficial in allowing us a comfortable position to focus on the business during the current recession,” concludes the entrepreneur.

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