Introducing WeLab #HKCashDrop to support
Hong Kong

www.hkcashdrop.com

2020-04-29

Hong Kong - April 29, 2020 – We understand that the Hong Kong Government has announced HK$10,000 cash handout to all permanent Hong Kong residents 18 years old or above, which will reportedly become available sometime in July. As a homegrown Hong Kong fintech company, we want to do our small part to help and support Hong Kong.

With this goal close at heart, we set out to find a way to get the HK$10,000 to the Hong Kong people earlier through the #HKCashDrop initiative. We believe that the earlier people get the money, the faster they can spend for themselves and their family, and the faster we can help stimulate the Hong Kong economy and speed up its economic recovery with the multiplier effect. We want to leverage technology and our resources to get the HK$10,000 to people in advance. We are still working out the details, but the initial thinking is that the HK$10,000 could be in the form of an interest-free loan (at no cost and with zero interest).

#HKCashDrop is an independent WeLab initiative to get the $10,000 into the hands of the people earlier using the power of technology.

Simon Loong, the Founder and Group CEO of WeLab said: “Whilst 2020 has been challenging, we hope #HKCashDrop will generate some much-needed positivity for Hong Kong. Inspired by international fintechs who have contributed to accelerating stimulus payments in their markets, we are doing our part for Hong Kong, using technology in a smart way to get money to people earlier. #HKCashDrop may start off with a limited number of spots, but we believe that helping 10,000 people is better than not helping any at all, as there is a multiplier effect that stretches the dollar further.

WeLab has been using game-changing technology to help democratize finance in Hong Kong over the last 7 years and right now, we want to leverage that same technology and our resources to give back to the community. Through #HKCashDrop, the initial thinking is that the HK$10,000 could be in the form of an interest-free loan, where there are no costs and no interest. We are providing this initiative at our own costs, so for those who do not pay us back by a certain date, we may need to charge interest, but this is certainly not the intention of this initiative. Whilst we have limited resources, we feel it is also our responsibility to do our part, to the extent possible we will be absorbing the funding and operational costs for this initiative, so there may be limited spots available based on some screening criteria. As for those who would like to use this money to help others, we may even be able to help donate it to a charity on their behalf, if there is a lot of interest in this feature. With the power of technology, we can all help Hong Kong together.

At this stage, we are asking a few basic questions through an online survey (www.hkcashdrop.com) to understand the receptivity and interest levels towards this initiative. We plan to announce additional details in the coming 3 weeks, if there is popular demand from the community.

The Hong Kong community has demonstrated patience and resilience over the last few months and shown strength in coming together to fight the virus. Support #HKCashDrop, Support Hong Kong Together!

For more information on #HKCashDrop, please visit www.hkcashdrop.com

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why are we doing #HKCashDrop?

As a homegrown Hong Kong fintech company, we feel it is also our responsibility to do everything we can to help the Hong Kong community, even if it may be a small gesture. We are doing this for two very simple reasons:

  1. We want to get the HK$10,000 to Hong Kong people earlier, so we can also help the government stimulate the rest of the Hong Kong economy faster and accentuate the multiplier effect that comes from this.
  2. We want to bring some joy to Hong Kong: 2020 has been rough so far and we hope getting HK$10,000 into people's hands faster will generate some much-needed positivity and give Hong Kong the morale boost that we need!

Q. How is the multiplier effect relevant to the relief measure from an economics perspective?

As discussed with Professor Albert Park, the Head and Chair Professor, Department of Economics, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, he explains that, “government subsidies to individuals not only provide needed relief to families suffering hardship, but also generate multiplier effects that ultimately can benefit the overall economy by much more than the subsidy amount. This occurs because increased spending by one family creates income for others, who in turn can increase their own spending, and so on. Thus, the earlier that families can actually receive funds, the earlier that these positive multiplier effects can be realized to the benefit of society.”

Q: Who is eligible to participate in #HKCashDrop and what is the process?

Anyone who is eligible for the HK$10,000 cash handout from the Hong Kong Government is eligible to apply. That means all Hong Kong permanent residents aged 18 or above. However, since there is a cost to us to roll out #HKCashDrop, there may be limited spots available based on some screening criteria. At this stage, we are collecting feedback from those who have signed up to help us iron out the details and understand the receptivity and interest levels towards this initiative. If there is popular demand from the community, we plan to announce additional details in the coming 3 weeks.

In terms of process, we haven't finalized all the details yet, but the initial thinking is that it could be in the form of an interest-free loan where there are no costs and no interest as long as the recipients repay WeLab when they receive the money from the Government and we will provide sufficient time to do so. We are providing this initiative at our own costs, so for those who do not pay us back by a certain date, we may need to charge interest.

Q: Will there be any interest charges or other fees?

No interest or fees will be charged if recipients repay WeLab when they receive the money from the Government and we will provide sufficient time to do so. We just want to get the $10,000 to people early if they want to spend it or donate it. Since all Hong Kong permanent residents 18 years old or above are eligible for the Government handout, there shouldn't be a scenario where recipients are unable to pay us back. However, if recipients intentionally do not repay us by the due date, then interest will kick in from that point. This is not the intention for this initiative, so let’s hope that we do not need to go there!

Q: How many people can #HKCashDrop help?

We will do our best to help as many people as we can with the resources that we have. At this stage, we are collecting feedback from those who have signed up to help us iron out the details and understand the receptivity and interest levels towards this initiative. If there is popular demand from the community, we plan to announce additional details in the coming 3 weeks.

We may start off with a limited number of spots, but we believe that helping 10,000 people is better than not helping any at all, as there is a multiplier effect that comes from that.

Q: Where does your capital come from?

#HKCashDrop is an independently organized WeLab initiative to get the HK$10,000 to people earlier using the power of technology. At a time where Hong Kong’s economy needs a boost, whilst we have limited resources, we feel it is also our responsibility to do our part in pulling together funding from different pockets - from our own capital, employees and shareholders.

About WeLab

WeLab is a leading fintech company in Asia and operates one of the first virtual banks in Hong Kong. Founded in 2013, WeLab uses game-changing technology to help customers access credit, save money, and enjoy their financial journey. Currently, WeLab serves over 42 million users and 300 enterprise customers across Hong Kong, Mainland China and Indonesia

Powered by proprietary risk management technology, patented privacy computing techniques and advanced AI capabilities, WeLab offers mobile-based consumer financing solutions and digital banking services to retail individuals and technology solutions to enterprise customers.

WeLab operates in three markets under six key brands, including WeLend and WeLab Bank in Hong Kong, WeLab Digital (我来数科), Taoxinji (淘新机) and Tianmian Lab (天冕大数据实验室) in Mainland China and Maucash in Indonesia.

WeLab’s investors include Malaysian sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Berhad, CK Hutchison’s TOM Group, International Finance Corporation (a member of the World Bank Group), Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund, Sequoia Capital and ING Bank.

For more information, please visit: www.welab.co

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