On October 10, China’s ByteDance launched a new loan service app called “Manfen” (“full score“ in Chinese). Manfen is a one-stop consumer financial services platform, providing users with credit card and consumer loan services.
Manfen marks ByteDance’s entry into financial services in addition to the company’s significant foothold in areas including newsfeed, short videos, corporate services, education, entertainment as well as social media. With major products like Jinritoutiao and TikTok, ByteDance excels in garnering huge online traffic and translating that traffic into advertising revenue. Giants like Alibaba, Tencent, Baidu, Meituan and DiDi are all entering the financial services domain.
The Manfen app has three main features, including credit cards, cash installment plans and consumption installment plans. The app’s user interface is similar to Ant Financial’s short-term consumer lending app, Jiebei. According to its official introduction, Manfen only requires users to submit identification and bank card details, and the system will automatically match the user with a loan amount accordingly, with a maximum amount of 200,000 and interest rates potentially as low as 0.03%.
Meanwhile, the Financial Times reported that ByteDance is expected to pursue an IPO in Hong Kong in the first quarter of next year, with the company’s valuation now around $75 billion. Such an exorbitant valuation is only rivaled by firms like Alibaba and Tencent in the Chinese internet space.