Meet the CEO and Co-founder of 123Qred, Adriano Duarte

Born and bred in São Paulo, Adriano has combined a career in sports with 20+ years in top-line executive positions, working for companies such as Whirlpool, PepsiCo, Schincariol, Kirin, Intel, and Citibank. Before Co-founding 123Qred, Adriano founded a business accelerator introducing the concept of “CEO as a service” and was Partner and CEO at another consumer credit-focused fintech.

Why did you decide to co-found 123Qred?
In a nutshell , for three reasons: the underserved, the conscious credit concept, and purpose.

First, during the past six years I have been dedicating my career to focus on solutions for the “underserved” in Brazil, companies as well as individuals, helping them improve results. Access to credit has always played an im portant role in this journey.

Second, focusing on the SME business in Brazil, SMEs see “credit” as a “problem-solver”, often linked to a shortfall in cash flow. Few companies recognize credit as a means to fuel growth – what I call “conscious credit”. And those SMEs who do recognize it, do not receive a credit offer that meets their operational need for different reasons.

Third, Brazil has more than 200MM people and will have more than 180MM+ internet users by 2022. Yet, more than 80% of the loan volume in Brazil is handled by the top 5 banks. Also, it is estimated that 40% of all Brazilian SMEs do not have access to credit.

This combination of factors led me, in partnership with Qred-Sweden and Webrock, to create 123Qred to provide under-served Brazilian SMEs with small business loans – in a simple, innovative, customer-centric, and digital manner.

How does Webrock support 123Qred?
Webrock is a true partner. Before 123Qred’s launch, Webrock had a strategic role in discussing and understanding the adequacy of the market to our operations in Brazil. Today, I consider the Webrock team as part of the 123Qred team, not only on the operational side, but also in terms of culture, morale, ethics, and transparency.

The weekly meetings with the Webrock team and with the CEOs of the other portfolio companies, is another great contribution of Webrock, enabling a rich environment for learning and finding synergies. To date, we have partnered with two of Webrock’s portfolio companies.

How has Covid-19 impacted 123Qred?
I am very proud of our work so far, launching the company in the middle of the pandemic. Since our operation was always planned to be digital, we could support most of the companies in a moment that credit offer in Brazil was significantly decreased. In less than 4 months, we have received over 10,000 applications from a four times larger visitors’ base.