Six months after buying a stake in the alternative credit bureau Pay Rent Build Credit Inc., the data company MicroBilt Corp. has bought it outright.

The companies said Tuesday that MicroBilt, which provides data to smaller community banks and businesses, has acquired Pay Rent Build Credit. The Annapolis, Md., bureau keeps records of rent, cable, phone, electric, and other recurring bill payments by people with little or no traditional credit history, to help them establish creditworthiness.

MicroBilt, a Kennesaw, Ga., division of Bristol Investments Ltd., said it intends to use the data reported by Pay Rent Build Credit to qualify more "thin-file" consumers for credit, thus increasing the available pool of customers for the smaller businesses and banks that MicroBilt serves. These companies, "hit hard by the credit crunch, are looking for ways to reach new and emerging markets," Bob Raleigh, the chairman of MicroBilt, said in a press release. "Access to PRBC's deep repository of non-reported bill payment data will give small and medium enterprises … the opportunity to tap into a huge market of creditworthy customers."

The announcement came six months after MicroBilt made an initial investment in Pay Rent Build Credit. The companies said in June that MicroBilt would add the bureau's data to its own trade-line reporting to create a new report and qualify up to 50 million "thin-file" consumers for Fair Isaac Corp.'s FICO Expansion Score. MicroBilt has not said how large this investment was.

The amount of the deal and the date it closed were not disclosed. MicroBilt said that Pay Rent Build Credit "will have a presence" on its "reconfigured" board of directors.

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