SAO PAULO, Aug 5 (Reuters) - Brazilian online lender C6Bank started operations on Monday, after signing up 200,000 borrowers during its test period and it plans to at least double that by year-end, founding partner Luiz Marcelo Calicchio said.
C6 is the latest digital lender to challenge Brazil's traditional banks, joining others such as Banco Inter SA and Nubank with lower operating costs than brick-and-mortar banks.
C6 has also entered the highly competitive card processing business, in which companies such as Cielo SA and Rede have been slashing prices to gain and maintain clients.
Calicchio declined at a press briefing to say when C6 might become profitable. It intends to attract investors to build up its capital, he noted.
The bank was founded by Marcelo Kalim, former chairman of Brazilian investment bank BTG Pactual SA, with 315 million reais ($79.95 million) in shareholders equity. It received central bank approval in January.
To sign up corporate clients at a low cost, C6 will distribute financial products through independent consultants. By the end of the year, C6 aims to have 1,000 consultants.
Brazil's banking sector is dominated by five banks which hold 82% of total assets, far above the 43% in the United States or 48% in the United Kingdom.
$1 = 3.9398 reais Reporting by Carolina Mandl; Editing by Richard Chang