Instead of using the dreaded banking jargon, I would walk you through the true story of a friend, who went from being a really-good friend, to hating me for a while, to being grateful (‘Grateful’, which is rare for your close friends to be).
Prateek (the friend) owned an Android phone as well as an iPhone. Android, because it apparently helped him get his daily work done, and iPhone, because it was an iPhone.
The anticipations, the leaks, the launch event, the memes, the crowd, the queues — this series of events before and after a new iPhone is launched, has never made much sense to me. Not that I don’t like an iPhone, I don’t understand how this craze behind it is justified.
When the new iPhone 7 got launched, the iFanatic in him got activated, and gave him an iFever. He would do anything to own it. And owning was not enough, owning as soon as it is available in India became the single most important goal of his life.
Why he wasn’t able to own it?
Prateek was self-employed with a good steady source of income. He could have bought the iPhone 7 on one time payment, but knew that buying on efficiently managed EMIs was a smarter decision.
So, here is the scenario. He had to buy iPhone 7 on EMI:
- The e-commerce sites and offline stores that he had checked out, could provide EMIs only on credit cards. He couldn’t find a website which could give him his iPhone 7 on EMI without credit card.
- He didn’t own a credit card, went to the bank to enquire about it, but realised he cannot get one as he did not have a credit history (had never taken a loan, or owned a credit card).
He had two options:
- Use someone else’s credit card:
He asked me for it, but I couldn’t help as it would go beyond my available credit limit. Thought I was lying, he got pissed off.
No idea where to get it from, he had almost lost hope. I got to know about one such startup that lets you buy anything on EMI without credit card — yes, Finomena (which I later joined). I had heard that through Finomena, one could buy mobile, laptop, TV, AC, furniture on EMI on debit card. You could buy something now, and later pay the EMIs using your SBI debit card, ICICI, HDFC or any other debit card.
I called him to inform that he could buy the iPhone on EMI on debit card, but heard this “The subscriber you are trying to reach, is currently busy. Busy hating you”.
I then sent the following text —
How to buy a mobile on EMI on debit card?
- Choose the product you want to buy on any of the e-commerce sites, or Finomena website/app.
- Copy the product link (URL), and paste it on the Finomena app or website
- Apply for a loan
- Submit govt. ID proof and other documents required for verification
- Make the downpayment
- Submit auto-debit form
- Your product will be delivered
I immediately got a call back, and could sense the excitement, disbelief, curiosity and happiness in his voice. It was almost the same as the time when his school-love had said ‘Yes’.
He downloaded the Finomena app, applied for a loan and got approved. I got a text saying ‘Thanks bhai” the day his iPhone got delivered. A ‘Thanks’ from him is unexpected, to say the least. He wouldn’t say it unless he slips off a cliff and I pull off a Spiderman to save him. The new iPhone meant that much to him.
I had only let him know about a way he can own it, and he now behaves as if I’ve gifted him the phone. Friends, I tell you, are amazing beyond words. So is helping making someone’s dream come true!