BNPL Zilch to “fully integrate” support from debt charity StepChange
The partnership will see Zilch making a financial contribution for StepChange’s work.
Buy now, pay later provider Zilch has agreed to fully integrate StepChange into its platform, in order to seamlessly transfer customers in need across to the debt advice charity.
The two teams will work closely together on how to recognise those customers and make timely referrals.
“To Zilch, this partnership is a natural and obvious one—why would any responsible lender of credit not want to align with an establishment such as StepChange that is doing so much to support people in these hard times?” said Zilch CEO and co-founder Philip Belamant.
“This partnership ensures we provide our customers with the very best support if they do fall behind on repayments—all for free.”
Zilch’s decision comes just two weeks after the buy now, pay later provider announced it would begin sharing lending data with all credit bureaus in a way that would start impacting consumers’ credit scores.
Belamant presented this as a potential benefit in that millions of customers can now start building and improving their credit scores, without using high-cost credit cards or loans.
Buy now, pay later has faced criticism in the past at how easily this unsecured credit can be accessed, and the potential for consumers to take on debt without realising it.
“StepChange has been helping people for 30 years—and during that time has supported millions of people seeking help with problem debt,” said Phil Andrew, CEO of StepChange.
“Over the last three decades a lot has changed—with new challenges like the cost-of-living crisis and new financial products.”
“But one thing has not changed and that is our commitment to support people struggling with problem debt and to work with a wide network of partners and supporters to ensure that those who need help can access it.”