Compuscan South Africa, a subsidiary of the Compuscan Holdings Group (CSH Group), is a leading credit bureau of South Africa and an emerging markets information services company with a far-reaching presence in Africa and Asia Pacific. The South African credit bureau has successfully built upon its entrepreneurial roots since 1994 to become a leading provider of powerful data and intelligent insights, enabling the success and prosperity of its customers by supporting informed decisions.
“We assist businesses to manage their credit risk, prevent fraud, target their marketing offers, reward loyal customers, automate their decision-making and educate the workforce. We also assist individuals to check their credit reports and scores, and help them protect themselves against identity theft.”
What began as the first positive and negative information credit bureau for small loan sectors, has over the years become a global force that positively impacts individuals, businesses, industries and, ultimately, economies.
In 1994, Compuscan was established as a consumer credit bureau in South Africa for microlenders by Remo Lenisa, after he identified a gap in the market to offer credit providers with a means of assessing borrowers’ risk profiles and mitigating bad debt. Even in its infancy, the essence of Compuscan’s business model was profound, enabling the niche microlending industry to operate with insight and greater levels of accountability.
In the years that followed, the method of sharing information evolved to ensure that the growing network of credit providers could receive both positive and negative data more efficiently. By 1997, this was being done in real-time via a centralised database. Only two years later, Compuscan once again proved its innovative drive with the launch of a key product; one that remains intrinsic to the credit industry today – Credit Check.
Thereafter, in 2000, the South African credit bureau began its expansion into new countries by entering Namibia and Botswana. Learn more about Compuscan’s global presence today, below.
Having received a training grant from the Banking Sector Education and Training Authority (BANKSETA) in 2003, Compuscan launched the Credit Skills Training Institute (CSTI), now known as Compuscan Academy, in 2004. The institute was accredited with BANKSETA and the Education and Training Quality Assurance (ETQA) body and became compliant with the South African Qualification Authority (SAQA), ready to begin sharing professional insight into the intricate workings of the credit industry.
In 2006, the National Credit Act (NCA) regulations were introduced to promote a fair, transparent, competitive, sustainable, responsible, efficient, effective and accessible credit market and industry in South Africa, and it was at this point that Compuscan South Africa was registered as a credit bureau.
Simultaneously, the company began to grow its presence in other African countries. In the same year, Compuscan made history in Uganda as it was licensed as the first full service credit bureau in the country. Just two years on, it developed and introduced biometric-based smart card ID system, the Financial Card System, for Ugandan borrowers who, until then, had no formal means of identifying themselves. The company’s growth, offering credit bureau services on the African continent continued and in 2010, it established Ethiopia’s first consumer and business credit information bureau.
In South Africa, Compuscan’s offering also kept going from strength to strength, with agility and foresight ensuring that the company remained ahead of industry trends. In 2011, Compuscan acquired shares in Scoresharp, allowing the company to introduce world-class data analytics to its portfolio of offerings. Just two years later, in 2013, Compuscan once again expanded its product range with the addition of Commercial Credit Reports. This significant development meant that South African businesses could rely on Compuscan’s data for far greater insight into the credit behaviour of commercial entities.
With the global increase in demand for convenience and accessibility, Compuscan introduced My Credit Check in 2014 as a means for South African consumers to view their credit information online. In the same year, the company once again established its presence in a new country with the launch of a credit bureau in Lesotho. The year 2014 may well have been one of the most significant ones in Compuscan’s history to date as this was also when Actis, a leading pan-emerging markets investor, acquired 60% of Compuscan Group’s ordinary shares. This notable acquisition earned Actis the Catalyst Private Equity Deal of 2014 award.
In 2015, Compuscan acquired P:Cubed, a specialist marketing services provider, adding a powerful dynamic to the company’s product offerings. This was similarly the case when Profit Science was acquired. A year later, Compuscan acquired 10% of shares in Creditinfo, an Icelandic credit bureau and information services group with operations in more than 25 countries.
Several months before these acquisitions took place, Compuscan also made a significant mark on its timeline with the introduction of its credit bureau services on international territory, outside of Africa, for the first time. This occurred in Sydney, when Compuscan Australia (Pty) Ltd. was registered and established in 2015. Shortly thereafter, in the same year, Compuscan Philippines Inc. began operations in Manila.
In 2017, Compuscan acquired Encentivize and Encentivize Rewards, bringing with them a suite of loyalty and rewards products to further expand their offerings.
By this time, Compuscan was no longer just a South African credit bureau, but rather a global information and credit services provider offering clients expertise in credit bureau services, analytics, marketing, consumer loyalty and education.
After being licensed as Compuscan – Sistema de Informação, SA in Mozambique in 2017, the Bank of Mozambique authorised Compuscan, together with Scoresharp, in 2018 to operate as the first private credit reporting system (credit bureau) in Mozambique. This new service leads all commercial banks and microfinance institutions (MFIs) to share data on loans made in the Mozambican market. The requirement to share this data with Compuscan may include other credit providers, such as telecommunications, retailers, utilities, insurance, amongst others in the future.
The Compuscan Group now proudly operates and provides credit bureau services in nine countries, namely:
Through its investment in Creditinfo, the group also has a presence in Europe and the Americas. Internationally, Compuscan employs over 400 people, and amongst Compuscan Group’s employees, 15 different languages are spoken. This not only showcases the rich cultural diversity of the company, but it allows the group to offer professional services to a broad multi-industry client base and to engage in business discussions and training, and to offer world-class customer experiences across the globe. Ultimately, Compuscan Group has a unified goal of becoming the leading provider of data-driven, end-to-end customer growth solutions in emerging markets around the world.
“We are constantly expanding on the territories in which we operate, in order to assist our clients’ global ambitions.”
Compuscan and its partner companies have received a number of awards and have reached many a noteworthy milestone since its inception in 1994, including:
The Compuscan Group, as a collective, aims to assist clients to make informed decisions and mitigate risk through every stage of the credit customer life cycle, as well as to maximise the value of their customer relationships. As a result of Compuscan’s tremendous growth over the years, it is well equipped to offer a comprehensive portfolio of products and services which meet the needs of various entities that operate in the credit and financial industries, among others.
“We have deep knowledge of the banking, retail, microfinance, insurance, utilities, automotive, telecommunications, mortgage, real estate, retail, trade and small business sectors.”
Compuscan, Scoresharp and its other subsidiaries enable confident decision making and add value throughout the customer life cycle via its five business units.
Powered by Compuscan Information Technologies (Pty) Ltd., data on millions of South African consumers and businesses is collected, validated and loaded to a secure database on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. Over 30 dedicated data capturers, administrators and data forensics agents, together with more than 10 network and security administrators, are responsible for this process, ensuring that data is recent, accurate, powerful and secure. Further, a group of more than 50 developers and QA testers create proprietary software, bringing the marketplace the latest in technology to assess clients’ creditworthiness, mitigate risks and increase profits.
Compuscan’s credit bureau product and service offering includes:
* South African citizens are entitled to one free credit report per year from each of the registered credit bureaus. Compuscan, however, now provides South African citizens with unlimited free credit reports and credit scores, showcasing their creditworthiness for life, via www.mycreditcheck.co.za.
To read more about our Credit Bureau Services, click here.
Powered by Scoresharp (Pty) Ltd., Compuscan Group provides the means to predict consumer behaviour, automate the decision-making process and improve turnaround time. A team of highly skilled data scientists and statisticians is responsible for developing and applying algorithms and models to Compuscan’s data to create intelligent insights and to bring informative trends to light.
Scoresharp’s product and service offering includes:
To read more about our Decision Analytics, click here.
Data analytics has allowed for the illumination of customer trends and has transformed the way in which marketing strategies are approached by businesses. By applying powerful analytical tools to Compuscan’s comprehensive and accurate data, Compuscan offers marketing services that drive targeted messaging and a strong likelihood of a return on investment.
This product and service offering includes:
To read more about our Marketing Services, click here.
Offered by Encentivize and Encentivize Rewards, Compuscan’s Loyalty and Rewards business unit’s offerings help clients to know and reward their customers for their loyalty to the brand. The programmes, developed by expert consultants, allow for measurability and are supported by data and analytics.
This product and service offering includes:
To read more about our Loyalty and Rewards, click here.
Professional training services are presented to the marketplace by Compuscan Academy (Pty) Ltd. and are led by an award-winning team of qualified educators. The academy’s broad range of accredited courses is aimed at practitioners that operate in the credit and financial services industries and collectively offer insights into all stages of the consumer credit life cycle.
Compuscan Academy’s training solutions focus on:
To read more about our Compuscan Academy, click here.
Compuscan Group follows a multidisciplinary approach and is led by a highly skilled, trained and experienced board of directors, namely:
“We shed light on risk and illuminate windows of opportunity, enabling profitability and growth.”
As a leading credit bureau of South Africa and a number of global locations, Compuscan assists in unlocking the prosperity of its customers, business entities and economies. In addition to this, the company continuously strives to support individuals and communities that are in need. Through teamwork, a value on which Compuscan places much emphasis, the company is able to give back to others and offer aid to communities in the regions where it operates.
The company is committed to:
“We enable success; helping businesses, industries, people and economies to prosper.”