Goldman Makes Biggest Mexico Fintech Bet With MercadoLibre Loan
Wednesday, December 4, 2019
By Cristiane Lucchesi
Goldman Sachs Group Inc. agreed to lend $125 million to Mercado Credito, the bank’s third loan to a Latin American fintech this year and the biggest ever in Mexico.
The borrower, a unit of MercadoLibre Inc., plans to use the money to triple in about one year its $100 million working-capital portfolio provided to small and midsize companies in Mexico, Martin de los Santos, a senior vice president, said in a phone interview.
The goal is to “democratize financial services,” by lending to firms that don’t have access to other financing, he said.
MercadoLibre dominates Latin American e-commerce with an almost 25% market share and 40 million unique monthly visitors, Julie Chariell, a senior analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence, said in a November report. It’s based in Argentina, but almost two-thirds of its $603 million in third-quarter net revenue came from Brazil, according to the company’s financial statements. Its market value more than doubled this year to $29 billion.
Photo courtesy of Alexis Tostado.