Hi-Way maintains its 2020 branch expansion plan
Tisco Financial Group’s microfinance arm, Hi-Way Co, maintains its branch network expansion plan for this year, although its business target may be revised in light of the pandemic.
Hi-Way, which provides auto title lending under the Somwang Ngern Sang Dai brand, aims to open an additional 50 branches nationwide this year, bringing the total to 350 by the end of the year. year, said general manager Supachai Boonsiri.
The company must monitor the economic situation after the government eased the lockdown policy before making a decision on revising the plan to trade targets for the full year, he said.
Hi-Way recorded 4% loan growth in the first quarter of this year, well below the double-digit growth of the past.
“We cannot forecast our economic or business activities for the second half of this year due to the pandemic,” Supachai said. “Hopefully activities will resume from the first half, in line with the easing of lockdown measures.
“If the economic situation does not improve in the second half of the year, the company’s loan growth could contract for the entire year.”
Mr. Supachai said the company is ready to offer financial assistance in accordance with the second phase of the Bank of Thailand’s debt relief measures on a case-by-case basis.
Suspension of debt repayment for principal and interest is also possible.
Regarding the central bank’s relief measures to lower the ceiling rate on auto and auto loans from 28% to 24%, he said this would have only a minor effect on the company as it was charging customers a rate below 28%.
Hi-Way charges a monthly interest rate of 0.55% for four-wheeled vehicles, 0.66% for trucks with six or more wheels, and 1.25% for motorcycles.
Loans for four-wheeled vehicles, including passenger cars and vans, represent 95% of Hi-Way’s outstanding loans.
Mr Supachai said customers’ repayment capacity is weakened as the pandemic wreaks havoc on the economy, but the level of deterioration differs depending on the segmentation of borrowers.
Some of the company’s borrowers have requested an extension of the expiry date for the debt relief program, while others continue to service the debt as usual, he said.
Hi-Way’s main customer segments are white collar workers, factory workers and independent customers, representing more than 30% each.