Frustrated by the traditional banking sector’s treatment of people with poor credit, Jeffrey Zhou WG15 and John Li W07 ENG07 WG15 set out to change the way subprime borrowers experience banking.

In 2015, they co-founded Fig Loans, a Houston-based startup that partners with Family Houston and United Way to offer credit-building loans of $300 to $500 at a rate 60 percent cheaper than those offered by payday lenders. The company’s online payment calculator shows customers exactly how much they’ll pay back each month. With no hidden fees, a flexible repayment schedule, and a discount for those who pay back their loans early, Fig Loans makes it easy for borrowers to make smart financial decisions and get out of debt.

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