News Comments Today’s main news: LendingPoint closes $178M personal loans securitization. OnDeck hits $879M in online financing in Texas alone. RateSetter adds three products. Funding Circle lenders face longer cash out waits. Yirendai files Form 6-K. Today’s main analysis: International P2P lending volumes for August 2019. Today’s thought-provoking articles: Silicon Valley is building a social […]
LendingPoint, the company revolutionizing and democratizing commerce, announced today that it closed its inaugural securitization of consumer loans. LendingPoint Receivables Trust 2019-1 (“LDPT 2019-1”) issued $177.85 million of notes backed by a pool of $187.22 million of direct-to-consumer loans originated on the LendingPoint platform.
The LendingPoint Receivables Trust securitization was rated by Kroll Bond Rating Agency, Inc. and includes $117.76 million of Class A notes rated “A-“, $24.74 million of Class B notes rated “BBB-“, $23.68 million of Class C notes rated “BB-” and $10.67 million of Class D notes rated “B-.” The notes priced at a blended yield of 4.05% per annum and provided for a 95% advance rate. The transaction has a 5% overcollateralization Deposit and a 5% overcollateralization Target. The risk adjusted yield of the receivables securing the notes is expected to be 13.14% per annum.
OnDeck today announced that TyMac Electric of Plano, Texas is its Small Business of the Month for August, 2019. The 30-person company serves the Dallas-Fort Worth area with high-quality, professionally managed electrical services.
Over the last two years, OnDeck has provided additional financing to TyMac Electric as the business grew to meet demand in the Dallas-Fort Worth commercial marketplace.
Overall, OnDeck has provided more than $879 million in financing online to small business owners in the State of Texas.
Have you heard about China’s social credit system? It’s a technology-enabled, surveillance-based nationwide program designed to nudge citizens toward better behavior. The ultimate goal is to “allow the trustworthy to roam everywhere under heaven while making it hard for the discredited to take a single step,” according to the Chinese government.
Many Westerners are disturbed by what they read about China’s social credit system. But such systems, it turns out, are not unique to China. A parallel system is developing in the United States, in part as the result of Silicon Valley and technology-industry user policies, and in part by surveillance of social media activity by private companies.
Real estate investment platform Fundrise has raised over $22 million for their Opportunity Fund. The information was revealed in a recent Form D 5o6c filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Data is the new oil, as the saying goes, and today Kabbage — a fintech startup backed by SoftBank that has built a business around lending up to $250,000 to small and medium enterprises, using AI-based algorithms to help determine the terms of the loan — is picking up an asset to expand its own data trove as it looks to expand into further SMB financial services. The company has acquired Radius Intelligence, the marketing technology firm that has built a database of information on some 20 million small and medium businesses in the U.S.
Nonbanks and alternative lenders have garnered attention in the banking industry due to their ability to partner with legacy banks and utilize technology to make financial transactions more efficient and convenient for users.
Challenger bank Chime has reached 5 million customers in the U.S. The San Francisco-based startup is creating an FDIC-insured mobile bank without any physical branch. The company also promises fewer fees.
Back in March, Chime said it had 3 million customers when it announced its $200 million Series D round. So that’s 2 million additional customers in roughly 5 months.
Even Financial, a four-year-old New York-based provider of APIs for financial services search, acquisition, and monetization, today announced that it’s raised $25 million in a strategic round of investment co-led by Citi Ventures and MassMutual Ventures, with additional participation from LendingClub. Existing backers American Express Ventures, Canaan Partners, F-Prime Capital, GreatPoint Ventures, and Goldman Sachs also participated in the round, which brings the company’s total raised to $50 million.
Credit Sesame — which lets consumers check their credit scores and evaluate options to rebalance existing debts and loans to improve that score and thus their overall “financial health,” in the words of CEO and founder Adrian Nazari — has raised $43 million. With the company already profitable and growing revenues 90% each year for the last five, Nazari said that this round is likely to be the last round the company raises before it goes public.
Household debt in the U.S. continues to rise and as of this year now stands at nearly $14 trillion.
CrowdBureau Corporation, a fintech startup and index provider, has closed $1.1 million Series A equity funding to expand its series of benchmarks and launch a pilot program for its patent-pending regulatory technology product. The round, which values the company at $9.7 million, was led by Clydagh Limited, Estuary Holdings Ltd. and Alpama Limited along with existing investors.
A growing number of companies are helping workers gain access to payroll advances and loans, reflecting concern over the impact money problems are having on productivity levels and worker retention.
Employers including Walmart Inc. and Pima County, Ariz., have recently added these services. The aim is to help cash-strapped employees, many with damaged credit, cover unexpected expenses without resorting to high-cost debt.
Lendingblock, the regulated, open exchange for institutional borrowing and lending of digital assets, today announces the launch of its institutional lending platform on September 3, 2019. The lending product, which is a reinvented version of securities lending from traditional capital markets, is the first exchange fully dedicated to pure crypto lending and aims to support the needs of the broader cryptocurrency market by providing a secure and liquid venue for lending and borrowing needs of institutional market participants.
Upon launch, Lendingblock platform users will be able to borrow and lend BTC, ETH, PAX and USDT on a fully collateralized basis, for loan terms of 1, 7, 14 and 30 days, with a minimum trade size of $100,000 equivalent of a specified digital asset.
News Comments Today’s main news: Upgrade completes $282M securitization. KBRA assigns preliminary ratings to SoFi Consumer Loan Program 2018-4 Trust. Funding Circle backs Just a Card. Monzo raises 85M GBP. Lendix changes name to October. Today’s main analysis: Which cities are spending within their means? Today’s thought-provoking articles: Total student loan balances by age group. Which cities are spending within […]
Upgrade, Inc., a consumer credit platform that offers affordable personal loans and personal credit lines with credit monitoring and education tools that help consumers better understand their credit, announced today it closed its inaugural securitization of personal loans. Upgrade Receivables Trust 2018-1 (“UPGR 2018-1”) issued approximately $282 million in notes to nearly 20 banks and asset managers.
This transaction marks the inauguration of Upgrade’s securitization program, designed as a quarterly issuance program. Credit Suisse and Jefferies acted as joint lead underwriters, and Upgrade served as sponsor, servicer and administrator for the transaction.
Kroll Bond Rating Agency (KBRA) assigns preliminary ratings to four classes of notes issued by SoFi Consumer Loan Program 2018-4 (“SCLP 2018-4”). This is a $549.00 million consumer loan ABS transaction.
Initial credit enhancement levels are 37.29% for the Class A Notes, 29.29% for the Class B Notes. 17.96% for the Class C Notes and 8.96% for the Class D Notes. Credit enhancement consists of overcollateralization, subordination (in the case of the Class A Notes, Class B Notes and Class C Notes), excess spread and a reserve account funded at closing.
SoFi’s ads boasted that its products led to people saving more than $20,000 on average. But, in its calculations, the company excluded student loan borrowers for whom refinancing resulted in a longer, and sometimes more expensive, repayment timeline than they had held prior, according to the FTC.
LendingTree today released its study on where Americans are spending within (and beyond) their means across the U.S.
To determine where people can afford their financial obligations, LendingTree analysts combed through anonymized credit report data of My LendingTree users from August 2018 and compared it to the average household income from the latest U.S. Census Bureau data. The ranking of the 50 largest metro areas factored in data such as the number of credit inquiries from the past two years, the use of revolving credit lines, non-housing debt and mortgage balances.
It may come as a surprise, but some of the most expensive U.S. cities have residents living within their budgets, suggesting that higher education and greater income may be the most salient factors for living within your means.
San Jose, Calif. (Silicon Valley), San Francisco and Raleigh, N.C., top the list for cities in which people are living within their means. High incomes help residents of San Jose and San Francisco pay their bills (despite exceptionally high housing costs), while a modest mortgage-to-income ratio gives Raleigh a big boost.
Residents of San Antonio, Riverside, Calif., and Las Vegas are struggling to meet their bills. Previous studies have shown that people spend a lot on vehicles in San Antonio, incomes are very low in Riverside and unemployment runs high in Las Vegas.
Popular Bank in New York has contracted with Biz2Credit to use its software for automating commercial loan approvals and to outsource the underwriting of certain small-business loans — a move that is part of a broader effort among banks to better compete with online lenders.
The $9.5 billion-asset Popular Bank started using the loan software earlier this month, said Rohit Arora, the CEO of Biz2Credit, an online marketplace that connects lenders and small businesses seeking credit.
Financial terms of the contract were not disclosed.
TV personality Montel Williams and a payday loan website he endorsed do not have to face racketeering charges for allegedly marketing illegal payday loans, a federal judge in California ruled on Tuesday.
U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White in Oakland granted a judgment in favor of Williams and online firm MoneyMutual, saying borrowers suing them failed to show that they participated in coordinated activity to commit fraud, as required for claims under the U.S. Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.
The ranks of challenger banks offering financial products and services to small businesses are growing.
But what do these firms offer that banks don’t or won’t?
In interviews, several executives argue that they make the process easier and more user-friendly. Loans can be approved quickly and digitally and challenger banks say they can provide a better customer service experience than traditional institutions.
Strong mobile apps
Only 52% consider their bank’s mobile banking solution to be satisfactory, according to Javelin surveys.
Cred, the leading provider of crypto-backed lending with over $250 million in credit facilities, today announced the addition of three executive team members. Maxim Rohkline joins as Chief Product Officer, James Alexander joins as Chief Capital Officer, and Richard Oh joins as GM of Asia. Each executive brings a 20+ year proven track record of financial technology innovation, spanning capital markets, online lending, payment systems, risk management, and analytics.
Factual Data, one of the nation’s premier providers of credit and data verification services to lenders nationwide, today announced an integration of its credit reporting capabilities with LendingPad (www.lendingpad.com), a leading provider of loan origination software headquartered in McLean, VA.
This integration allows clients to order tri-merged credit reports directly from Factual Data. Credit reports are merged in LendingPad’s document management system and liabilities data is updated in real time. The integration is available to all LendingPad users and will automatically populate credit information into the platform.
White Oak Commercial Finance, a division of White Oak Global Advisors, today announced the appointment of Robert Dean to Managing Director of Risk Management for ABL and Factoring. Mr. Dean joins from Wells Fargo Capital Finance, where he served as Senior Vice President and Regional Sales Manager responsible for sourcing and structuring asset-based financing for middle-market companies with credit needs ranging from $5 million to $40 million.
FUNDING Circle has teamed up with small business campaign group Just A Card to provide an alternative to the annual Black Friday shopping event.
The peer-to-peer business lending giant will help promote the Just A Card campaign – run by artists, designers and small business owners – to encourage people to shop locally in the run up to Christmas.
The joint campaign will take place during Just A Card Indie Week on 19 November, the week before Black Friday where bigger retailers hold sales.
Monzo, the U.K. challenger bank that now boasts more than a million customers, has raised £85 million in Series E funding. The round is led by U.S. venture capital firm General Catalyst and Accel. Existing backers Passion Capital, Goodwater, Thrive Capital, Orange Digital Ventures and Stripe also participated.
The latest funding was at a pre-money valuation of £1 billion (~$1.27b), meaning that Monzo is now a bona-fide member of the U.K. fintech unicorn club, joining recent entrant Revolut.
Meanwhile, the bank upstart is also planning to launch a large crowdfunding round later this year. Like a lot of other fintechs — and before it was fashionable — Monzo has historically opened up its fundraising to its passionate community and other armchair investors.
iwoca, one of Europe’s fastest growing small business lenders, has today successfully released Open Banking for all new customers with a Lloyds Bank account. The company becomes the first ever business lender to connect with any of the UK’s nine largest banks under the Open Banking initiative, launched in January 2018.
By securely linking their Lloyds Bank data, business owners can now provide iwoca up to five years of transaction history with a few quick clicks of a mouse. This speeds up the lender’s already swift application process even further for Lloyds customers, reducing the time they spend submitting bank information to less than 60 seconds.
Small businesses (SMBs) left behind by their banks, thanks to tightening risk and capital requirements post-financial crisis, certainly left a gap in the SMB lending market that alternative and marketplace lenders rushed to fill. In the U.K., support for FinTech, as well as challenger banks, to boost competition in the small business lending market is driven by the oft-repeated conundrum for this industry: small businesses are more complex than a consumer, yet not as lucrative as a large enterprise, and are, therefore, unattractive borrowers to traditional, large lenders.
With a growing community of alternative finance (AltFin) players, banks have taken to either letting AltFin handle filling the small business lending gap or partnering with and acquiring those FinTech firms to retain their SMB customers. Yet, a gap remains. While the Goldilocks Conundrum offers a simple explanation as to why, a deeper dive into the issue of small business bank lending reveals a far more complex issue.
According to OakNorth Analytical Intelligence, both large banks and alternative FinTech firms are struggling to overcome the challenges of SMB lending, and it often comes down to data. Amir Nooriala, COO of OakNorth, said that to underwrite an SMB loan, financiers have to take in and analyze unstructured data.
China’s online peer-to-peer (P2P) lending industry will grow at an estimated annual growth rate of 30% to 40% after the government’s tightened regulations weeding out bad and small players in the following two to three years. That’s the projection of Kevin Zhang, chief financial officer of X Financial, a Chinese P2P lender that completed a listing in New York two months ago.
The news was leaked last week. Now it’s official. From its Paris headquarters, Olivier Goy, founder and CEO, announced that the European lending marketplace formerly known as Lendix is changing its name into October. With this name change the company reasserts its ambition to expand both into new geographies and new products.
Why October? Among other things, the name celebrates the 4th anniversary of the company founded in October 2014. But more importantly, it is better suited to support the company’s international ambitions. Earlier this year, Lendix / October raised €32 million to fuel its international expansion. The marketplace already operates in four countries: France, Spain, Italy and the Netherlands where it has helped finance more than €230 million worth of SME loans. October as a name is easy to understand, to remember and to spell in most languages.
Another important reason behind the name change is that October as a name frees the company from an exclusive association with the lending category. We can expect more announcements soon. A banking license? Bonds retail? An equity platform? We can expect the unexpected from October.
Ireland’s first online peer-to-peer lending platform for property investors went live yesterday.
Property Bridges is targeting investors who are finding it difficult to secure a loan from a bank, or who need funding relatively quickly, with people able to invest in projects with as little as €500.
Marc Rafferty – who was also an investor in the SME peer-to-peer lending platform Linked Finance – is one of the Co-founders of Property Bridges.
Several factors were taken into account to establish this ranking, including the amount raised on average over a year or the degree of innovation of their products or services.
24. N26 – Offering a mobile banking app that operates without a single physical branch, N26 is expecting to enter the US market in the first quarter of 2019 — the company is a new entry in this year’s ranking.
22. Monzo – Monzo, a new entry to the list, is a digital bank focused on building the best current account in the world.
19. Klarna – Klarna is a leading European provider of e-commerce payment options that distinguishes payers from buyers — the company came 14th in last year’s ranking.
5. SoFi – Social Finance Inc. is an online finance company that provides lending products, such as student loan refinancing, mortgages, and personal loans — SoFi came 11th in last year’s ranking.
1. Ant Financial – Ant Financial Services Group is dedicated to using technology to bring the world equal opportunities.
Their technologies, from blockchain and artificial intelligence to security, the Internet of Things and computing, have helped Ant Financial to “serve the unbanked and underbanked”.
BlockFi, a blockchain-based platform backed by Galaxy Capital, is taking its lending services to the global market.
The primary objective of BlockFi is to provide incremental liquidity for clients in the cryptocurrency space. Recently, the company expanded its customer service team to onboard Spanish and Mandarin speakers. In Q3 2018, half of the traffic on the BlockFiwebsite came from users residing outside the US. These foreigners were also responsible for 33% of loan applications on the platform.
An extra AU$100 million (US$70.76 million) of funding could be put into a rebate scheme for households buying energy storage systems in South Australia, after a peer-to-peer lending group stepped in.
Peer-to-peer lending company RateSetter has agreed to finance the sum as part of the South Australian government Home Battery Scheme, which has committed to granting 40,000 households in the state up to AU$6,000 each in subsidies towards the purchase of batteries for use in home solar-plus-storage solutions. The Home Battery Scheme also allows households to finance the unsubsidised remainder of the cost, as well as rooftop solar. Launched in September, the scheme is partly motivated by the need to help manage peaks in energy demand on the state’s grid network.
Xinja, which is building a 100% independent digital bank, or ‘neobank’ for mobile, (subject to it receiving a banking licence) is adding significant global expertise to its organisation with the announcement that Brett King will act as a permanent advisor to the Board, and help guide Xinja’s strategic direction.
Brett King founded neobank Moven in 2011, which launched the world’s first mobile, downloadable bank account. He is widely considered the most influential expert on retail banking innovation globally.
Many investors get excited the moment they hear that P2P lending can earn them higher double-digit returns. However, the very next moment they would ask: what happens if the borrower defaults? How do P2P companies handle such defaults.
To begin with, P2P companies assess the financial footprints of the borrower through different sources as per their own credit evaluation system. “We try to ensure that loans are advanced to genuine customers with a structured credit evaluation process. Usage of alternate data also helps in refining the process to gauge the intent of a customer,” says Dhiren Makhija, co-founder and CEO, Cashkumar.
Pramod Akhramka, Founder and Managing Director of OML P2P has been elected as the President of the newly formed association of NBFC P2P Platforms. Rajiv Ranjan, Founder of PaisaDukan has been appointed as the Secretary and Mukesh Bubna, Founder of Monexo has been elected as the Treasurer of the association.
To represent the NBFC-P2P lending industry at international forums, existing and new players in the industry has formed an association of NBFC P2P Platforms.
DISRUPTIVE technology evolution has made a wide impact to global economies, the very first forefront business that feel this in both positive and negative way is financial service industry.
Due to the nature of business has been digitised and operated both locally and internationally when conduct business transaction and service. In this “global-digitisation” context, financial service firm must excel how to harness these technologies to improve efficiency and enhance customer experiences. New tech and fin tech in particular, have been increasing adopted by not only financial industry but also other businesses as well. This promote the collaboration and interdependency within and outside of the industry.
News Comments Today’s main news: SoFi reports $200M loss in Q2. OnDeck jumps 18%. LendingClub sees record net revenues in Q2. Alipay fined for regulation violations. Dianrong raises $40M. Even Financial raises $18.8M. Today’s main analysis: OnDeck’s Q2 2018 earnings presentation. Today’s thought-provoking articles: GreenSky, OnDeck, LendingClub earnings. Where did it go wrong for Wonga? OnDeck’s Q2 earnings presentation. United States SoFi reports […]
OnDeck today announced second quarter 2018 Net income of $5.8 million, Adjusted Net income of $10.0 million and Gross revenue of $95.6 million.
Review of Financial Results for the Second Quarter of 2018
Net income was $5.8 million, or $0.07 per diluted share, improved from the Net loss of $1.5 million, or $0.02 per diluted share, in the year-ago period.
Adjusted Net income was $10.0 million, or $0.13 per diluted share, compared to Adjusted Net income of $4.7 million, or $0.06 per diluted share, in the year-ago period.
Unpaid Principal Balance grew 3% sequentially and 8% from a year ago to $1,027 million. Originations of $587 million were consistent with the prior quarter reflecting an increase in the number of loans funded and decrease in the average loan size. Originations increased 26% from a year ago with growth in both term loans and lines of credit.
Gross revenue increased to $95.6 million, up 6% from the prior quarter and 10% from the year-ago quarter, driven by higher Interest income. The Effective Interest Yield was 36.1%, up from 35.6% in the prior quarter and 33.5% in the year-ago quarter, primarily reflecting increases in average loan pricing.
Guidance for Full Year 2018
OnDeck increased its guidance for the full year ending December 31, 2018:
Gross revenue between $380 million and $386 million, up from between $372 million and $382 million,
Net income between $10 million and $16 million, up from between $0and $10 million, and
Adjusted Net income between $30 million and $36 million, up from between $18 million and $28 million.
See OnDeck’s full Q2 2018 earnings presentation here.
Shares of On Deck Capital(NYSE:ONDK) were soaring by nearly 25% as of 1 p.m. EDT on Tuesday as the company beat consensus earnings expectations in the second quarter and raised its outlook for the remainder of the year.
Now, the top-line numbers are improving. Second-quarter figures released after market close on Tuesday showed record net revenue, up 27 per cent from a year earlier at $177m, from record quarterly loan originations of $2.8bn.
On top of all that, there was a big writedown this quarter of an acquisition made four years ago, during an ill-fated push into supplying loans to medical patients. Over the first six months, total expenses came to $1.28 for every dollar of net revenue.
GreenSky went public just a few months ago on May 24, 2018. Their IPO was significant for a couple of reasons. One was the lack of US based fintech IPOs over the last few years and the second was that GreenSky is a wildly successful business. Last year they reported $139 million in net income on revenues of $326 million.
OnDeck reported net income of $5.8 million for the quarter with gross revenues of $95.6 million, up 10% year over and 6% from the previous quarter. Originations grew to $587 million, up 26% from the prior year period, but down slightly from the previous quarter. The company’s trend of increasing the number of loans funded and decreasing the average loan size continues.
CEO Scott Sanborn noted that LendingClub’s core business is firing on all cylinders with record revenue and originations. The company has seen a 50% increase in applications year over year. Originations were $2.8 billion, up 31% year over year and up from $2.3 billion in the previous quarter. For context, the company originated their last high water mark of $2.75 billion in the first quarter of 2016. Revenues came in at $177 million, up 27% year over year.
Even Financial, a fintech startup that connects the disparate entities of the financial services industry, recently raised a $18.8 million Series A round led by GreatPoint Ventures with participation from Goldman Sachs, Canaan Partners, F-Prime Capital, Lerer Hippeau and others.
Although the OCC emphasizes that it’s holding these special-purpose charters to standards equivalent to those demanded of national banks, this is only sort of true with regard to the named prudential requirements, and it looks to be completely incorrect on critical restrictions on competitive and financial risk. These omissions have significant consumer protection, safety and soundness and structural impacts. Absent egregious violations, a charter granted cannot be revoked. The OCC should be sure it isn’t a shadow-bank enabler before it hands out these high-powered charters.
Rahul Chadha follows peer to peer mobile banking for the research organization eMarketer. His firm says Zelle will overtake Venmo this year. Chadha spoke with Marketplace’s Lizzie O’Leary about the two payment systems.
BankMobile A digital bank created by an established US-based financial services player Customers Bancorp. BankMobile opened for business in early 2015.
It caters mainly for students and offers a low-fee checking account with no monthly fees and no overdraft/non-sufficient funds (NSF) fees. It also provides personal loans.
Chime Founded in 2014, Chime has raised over $100 million funding to date, values the business at around $500 million and has over one million accounts. It employs around 100 people.
Endeavor Bank Endeavor Bank opened its doors for business in San Diego, California in January 2018, following an initial capital raise of $26.6 million and the backing of over 450 investors/owners. It is a brand new bank, with no merger legacy.
Finn Finn is a digital bank account for smartphones created by JP Morgan Chase.
GoBank GoBank was launched in 2013 by Green Dot Corporation, which claims it to be “the first bank account designed from scratch to be opened and used on a mobile device”.
Iam Money Iam Money has its HQ in Chicago and an office in San Francisco. It also has two offices outside the US, in Dublin and London.
It has secured $3 million of funding, and plans to have $20 million when it launches.
Marathon International Bank A start-up bank for the Ethiopian American community, based in the Washington DC area. Its founders are Tekalign Gedamu, a retired economist and former MD of the Development Bank of Ethiopia, and Tesfaye Biftu.
Marcus An online platform launched by Goldman Sachs – named after Marcus Goldman, one of the firm’s founders – offering no-fee personal loans and high-yield savings to consumers.
Moven Launched in 2011 by Brett King, Moven describes itself as “the world’s first real-time mobile money tool”. It is a digital bank account with a mobile app.
N26 A challenger bank from Germany, now working on its US presence, including obtaining a banking licence. It opened early access to users in the US in October 2017 and has an office in New York with eight staff.
PurePoint Financial PurePoint Financial was launched in early 2017 by MUFG Union Bank. It is a “hybrid digital bank” offering savings accounts and certificates of deposit (CDs).
Revolut European banking challenger Revolut opened early access to users in the US in September 2017. It says it aims “to clean up the American banking system”. It provides digital banking services to consumers and businesses.
Simple Digital banking service Simple was founded in 2009 in Portland, Oregon. It describes itself “a tech company, not a bank”.
In early 2014, it was acquired by BBVA Compass for $117 million.
In early 2017, it raised another $500 million, and spent $100 million (in stock) on Zenbanx, a mobile banking start-up. Zenbanx offered a mobile account in the US and Canada that lets people save, send and spend money in multiple currencies. This deal demonstrated SoFi’s interest in branching into other financial services, with a wealth management tool in beta at the time of the acquisition.
In early 2018, Stash raised $37.5 million in Series D funding for product expansion, and shortly afterwards teamed with Green Dot Corporation and its subsidiary bank, Green Dot Bank, to launch mobile-first banking services (underpinned by Green Dot’s Banking-as-a-Service platform).
Studio Bank In 2017, Tennessee-based Studio Bank filed an application to become Nashville’s “first newly chartered de novo bank in nearly a decade”.
Varo Money San Francisco-based mobile banking service Varo Money was founded in 2015. It applied for a national bank charter and federal deposit insurance in mid-2017, to form Varo Bank.
The Treasury Department’s recent report on how to regulate nonbanks drew praise not just from tech startups but also from mortgage industry insiders.
In addition to recommendations for a new federal fintech charter and that regulators pull back from payday lending rules, the report contained a section that might be music to a mortgage banker’s ears, including support for the industry’s automation efforts and another call to soften the use of the False Claims Act against lenders.
Mortgagetech company Blend is venturing into insurance. The San Francisco-based company launched Blend Insurance Agency, an extension of its digital mortgage platform that offers borrowers a range of options for homeowners insurance.
The first property is a 1,242-unit self-storage facility in Fayetteville, NC. It was acquired in December 2013 and sold in January 2018. It was acquired for $6,750,000 and sold for $9,645,000, representing a 43% increase in capital value from acquisition.
The second property is a 40,000-square foot office building in Tamarac, FL. It was acquired in May 2016 and sold in February 2018. It was acquired for $4,150,000 and sold for $4,900,000, representing an 18% increase in capital value from acquisition.
The third property is a 72-unit multifamily apartment building in Ogden, KS. It was acquired in July 2013 and sold in April 2018. It was acquired for $4,000,000 and sold for $4,450,000, representing an 11% increase in capital value from acquisition.
The fourth property is a 208-unit multifamily apartment building in Euless, TX. It was acquired in February 2015 and sold in May 2018. It was acquired for $12,375,000 and sold for $20,900,000 after a value-add renovation program, representing a 69% increase in capital value from acquisition.
DriveWealth Holdings, Inc. (“DriveWealth”), a fintech company providing brokers, digital advisors and mobile online financial services companies seamless access to the U.S. securities market, and Bambu, a global provider of robo-advisory technology, today announced the launch of a white-label, end-to-end robo-advisory platform solution for the wealth management industry.
To be considered for admission, applicants must complete the nine-page application and pay a $500 application fee. Each application must be for an innovative financial product or service as defined by the enabling legislation.
The emergency fundraising is the latest episode in Wonga’s rapid rise and fall. Just six years after the company was touted for a flotation that would have valued it at more than $1bn (£770m), it is reported to be worth just $30m.
WHEN PAYDAY LENDER Wonga launched in 2007, it was tipped to become a £1bn success story. Today, the company is worth just £23m and has only managed to avoid insolvency thanks to a last-minute £10m boost from investors. So what went wrong?
They are winding up their largest survey ever right now. In the past they have produced multiple reports targeting the various regions around the world including: the United Kingdom, Europe, the Americas, Asia and Africa. This year they are combining everything into one big study.
If you have not participated in the survey yet time is running out (while the survey says it closes on July 22nd, they have extended the deadline for another week or so). We need every platform in this country and around the region to participate. To learn more you can read more about this comprehensive piece in
Chinese P2P lending platform Dianrong announced that it has raised $40 million of funding from Dalian Financial Investment Group Co. Ltd. The current round will increase the company’s total funds raised to date to over $500 million. Its previous investors include big titles such as Standard Chartered, GIC Private Limited, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, CMIG Leasing, Simone Investment Managers, etc.
Prime Trust, a blockchain driven trust company, announced on Monday it has launched a new technology that enables real estate syndicators and securities issuers to accept funds from investors in the form of Bitcoin and Ethereum, frictionlessly and with zero crypto-market risks to the syndicator or issuer. According to Prime Trust, the technology enables holders of these virtual currencies to invest in real estate, crowdfunding and other private and public securities offerings without having to go through the cumbersome and often confusing process of liquidating tokens and then wiring funds in USD to an escrow account at Prime Trust.
TransUnion TRU, +0.56% announced today it is partnering with global technology and analytics company EXL EXLS, +0.93% to create a seamless technology solution for lenders to comply with the new Current Expected Credit Loss (CECL) accounting rule. Information about the new accounting rule will be highlighted during TransUnion’s webinar, “Major Hurdles to Overcome to be CECL-Ready,” scheduled for 1 p.m. CDT on August 15.
As the revelations from the Royal Commission continue to pour in, the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) has revealed that, in total, Australian financial advice institutions will refund customers over $800 million in reparations over fees for no service (FFNS) programs.
Launched in June 2018, the bank is led by former ANZ Japan CEO, Robert Bell, and ex-Cuscal Payments CIO Brian Parker. Joining as incoming chairman is Anthony Thomson, co-founder and former chairman of Atom Bank and Metro Bank.
For its tech, it uses a variety of different vendors. Unifii’s Business Transformation Platform is used for its technical infrastructure. For its small business lending platform, it will use one from Realtime Computing, based in Perth, Australia.
Digital banking start-up Pelikin aims to reshape the way people save, send and spend their money in Australia and while travelling abroad. The company’s slogan is “spend like a local”. The founder is Sam Brown.
Unveiled in 2008 and developed and supported by National Australia Bank (NAB). It operates under NAB’s banking licence, and offers home loans, online savings accounts, and term deposit accounts. UBank has more than 400,000 customers.
News Comments Today’s main news: Prosper changes pricing. Revolut launches disposable virtual cards. OakNorth reports annual profit. Lufax delays IPO. eToro raises $100M for blockchain development. Today’s main analysis: Isas that pay up to 16%. Today’s thought-provoking articles: Is personal service getting lost in digital? What makes big data BIG? How quantum computing can change financial services. Can the blockchain prevent bank […]
Is personal service getting lost in the digital mindset? AT: “This is worth thinking about. While technology allows alternative lenders to do what they do affordably, efficiently, and at scale, it’s the personal touch that gives companies in this space an edge over big financial institutions.”
Earlier this week in anticipation of the Fed Rate hike, we discussed Prosper’s approach to portfolio pricing in a rising rate environment. Our goal with rate-setting is to deliver value for both sides of the Prosper platform by providing a fair price for borrowers and a reasonable return for investors.
In order to deliver on this objective, the borrower rates offered in our marketplace must react to rate changes in the economy at large. Today, the Federal Reserve announced a 25 basis point (bps) increase in the Fed Funds rate. In light of this development, the rates offered to borrowers through the Prosper platform are being modified.
Pricing Change Impact Simulation
The table below summarizes the simulated impact of the rate increase on the portfolio originated through the Prosper platform in March month-to-date (MTD) 2018. Overall borrower rates on the platform are increasing by 26 bps.
Profitability of digital-only businesses can be astounding because the model is so cost-efficient. Some just don’t want customers with “high maintenance” needs such as human customer support.
The best overall answer is to offer all options. Enable customers to interact solely in a digital way or with live support to guide through the process, answer questions and solve problems. Make it easy to use both, such as Amazon does. Online ordering is usually a breeze. But when a problem or concern arises, they have caring and competent live human beings to help.
Ways To Show That You’re Invested (Or Want To Be) In Human Caring
The paper argues that due to Big Data, “the innovation seen in systematic trading models over the past decade could accelerate” and (a closely related point) the “differences between what used to represent quantitative versus qualitative research” could disappear.
Not all Roses and Plush Toys, Though
The process by which the new data capabilities and principles get internalized by the swifter funds, those that want to be on the winning side of the arb plays, isn’t a painless one. There are “integration and cultural challenges” that have to be overcome. After all, the experts that an aspiring arbitrageur would hire come from “internet firms, gaming companies, the military” and consumer research. The world of asset management will be new to them, so everyone on the developing teams can “work effectively together.”
The explosive adoption of the digital channel is changing the nature of lending. Consumers are coming to expect the kind of convenience and speed that a digital experience can deliver, and lenders are increasingly looking to oblige. Although many of the consumer benefits of digital lending are clear, certain complications related to fraud arise when lending goes digital. This is a function of the degree of separation and anonymity in the digital lending process. Building on these factors, today’s fraudsters are relying on a diversified playbook of schemes and techniques to commit loan fraud in digital channels, including the use of synthetic identities, volumetric attacks, and technology designed to disguise their digital footprint. In this report, Javelin explores how these issues have come to unfold and the steps that lenders must take if they want to effectively resist this growing epidemic of digital lending fraud.
Key questions discussed in this report:
What effect has the use of digital channels had on the lending space?
How has fraud changed as a result of lending going digital?
What are the technology factors affecting the risk of lending fraud in digital channels?
What are the fraud risks specific to each type of loan product?
How are different segments of consumers affected by digital lending fraud?
What are the steps that FIs and other lenders can take to effectively prevent new account fraud?
A recent decision from a federal district court in Colorado, Colorado ex rel. Meade v. Avant, strikes another blow against many of the financial technology firms that are revolutionizing the way consumers and businesses access credit. Joining what is now a line of decisions, the court limited the valid-when-made doctrine, which provides that a loan that is valid when it is made does not become invalid (i.e., usurious) when it is sold or assigned to a third party.
A Colorado federal judge ruled Wednesday that the Federal Deposit Insurance Act doesn’t so completely preempt a state financial regulator’s claims against nonbank lender Marlette Funding LLC that they have to be heard in federal court.
U.S. District Judge Philip A. Brimmer remanded the case from Julie Ann Meade, the administrator of Colorado’s Uniform Consumer Credit Code, making it the second such “true lender” action to get kicked back to Denver state court this month.
In a joint annual report to Congress released Tuesday with the Federal Trade Commission about debt collection practices, the CFPB said it had initiated four enforcement actions last year, had resolved one case and has five others pending related to unlawful debt collection practices.
Acting CFPB Director Mick Mulvaney has indicated that debt collection will be a top priority for the agency. About 26% of consumers with a credit file have debt that is being collected by a third party, the CFPB said.
The CFPB recovered $577,000 in consumer relief from its enforcement actions while $78,800 was paid into the civil penalty fund, which is used to provide relief to eligible consumers who otherwise would not be compensated.
On March 14, Governor Jay Inslee of Washington signed the Washington Student Education Loan Bill of Rights. This law had been in the works since 2017 when a report, released by Attorney General Bob Ferguson in December, documented significant disparities across gender, income, age, and race in student loan borrowing and highlighted a handful of the hundreds of complaints the office received from student loan borrowers about their student loan servicers. Providing strong protections for Washington’s more than 730,000 student loan borrowers, whose debt now totals $22.9 billion, the law changes Washington’s regulatory schematic for lenders and servicers operating in the student loan marketplace in the following ways:
It creates the position of “Advocate” within the Washington Student Achievement Council to assist student education loan borrowers with student loans, akin to the position off “ombudsman” under proposed and enacted servicing bills in other states.
It requires servicers to obtain a license from the DFI.
Per this law, all student loan servicers, except those entirely exempt from the statute, are made newly subject to sundry statutory duties.
It imposes several requirements on third-parties providing student education and loan modification services.
It compels institutions of higher education to send borrower notices regarding financial aid.
It calls for the establishment, by rule, of fees sufficient to cover the costs of administering the program that it itself creates.
Lastly, the statute provides for a complete exemption for “any person doing business under, and as permitted by, any law of this state or of the United States relating to banks, savings banks, trust companies, savings and loan or building and loan associations, or credit unions.”
Upstate New York is a popular place for millennials to buy houses, according to a national survey by online lender Lending Tree. For home buyers 35 and under, Rochester ranks 16th among the nation’s 100 largest cities for home mortgage requests and offers from borrowers between Feb. 1, 2017, and Feb. 1, 2018.
LendingTree, an online lending exchange company, released a study listing the best and worst cities for a new small business, and Fresno ranked ninth for best cities to start a new small business.
Ranking at first is Sacramento.
To conduct the study, LendingTree used data from over 80,000 queries submitted by new small-business owners seeking loan offers through their small business loan marketplace to find out where businesses tend to perform the best.
The change will allow Credit.com users to get matched with personal loan offerings that can be pre-approved in real-time without leaving the site thanks to Even’s technology. Previously, users looking for personal loans on the site were referred to individual lender websites.
Roostify today announced the addition of Mark McLaughlin as the company’s Senior Vice President of Business Development. McLaughlin will be responsible for formulating the company’s overall partner strategy, creating a scalable operational model, and further developing an ecosystem of technology partners and strategic alliances.
Citigroup Inc added restrictions on firearms sales for new retail-sector clients, the Wall Street bank said on Thursday, the strongest move to date by a major U.S. lender following last month’s high school shooting in Florida.
In an emailed statement Citi said it will require those clients only sell firearms to customers who have passed a background check, restrict firearms sales for buyers under 21, and not sell so-called “bump stocks” or high-capacity magazines.
In an effort to stay one step ahead of the game at all times, digital banking app Revolut is set to launch disposable virtual cards next week to help users of its Premium service protect themselves against online card fraud.
Revolut users will be able to create disposable virtual cards for online purchases in seconds, with card details that automatically regenerate after each transaction. This will also protect users from inconveniences like chargebacks from sites on one-off purchases, as well as preventing fraudsters from tracking bank account information.
The virtual cards will work alongside existing Revolut security features, such as location-based transaction security, the familiar “freeze/unfreeze” physical card ability, as well as being able to disable swipe and contactless payments.
UK based digital bank OakNorth reported an annual profit of $149mn, becoming the first digital bank to do so; in their second year of full operations the bank has seen their loan book triple in size and deposits double in size; Rishi Khosla, OakNorth chief executive, told the Financial Times, “we build them for profit and on strong foundations so as you grow you’re scaling a real business rather than what happens to a lot of fintech where you just keep building for top-line or number of customers, but don’t necessarily have the strongest business model.”
See the table below to see what Ifisas are on the market, what industry they invest into, the minimum investment amount and what kind of returns you can expect.
Among the highest rates, FundingSecure offers up to 16% on investments from £25. However, as a peer-to-peer ‘pawnbroking platform’ borrowers are looking for urgent loans to be given within 24 hours, which are secured against their assets. Borrowers are not required to pass any credit checks. Ablrate offers variable rates up to 16%, but they’re set by the borrower and you have to decide if the return is worth the risk. Past funded loans include units for a film studio, a waste management company and a modular building company.
Where else can I find high interest rates? They may not offer 16% interest, but there are a number of current accounts that pay up to 5% – and they don’t come with the associated risks of a Ifisa.
Nationwide’s FlexDirect account offers 5% AER on balances up to £2,500 when you pay in at least £1,000 a month. This is only for the first 12 months, however.
The TSB Plus account offers 3% AER on funds up to £1,500 as long as £500 is paid in each month and you register for online and paperless banking. There’s also the opportunity to earn up to £10 cashback a month, for a limited time.
The Tesco Bank current account also offers 3% AER on balances up to £3,000. You need to pay in £750 a month and set up at least three direct debits.
From today, digital business bank Tide has been authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) as an electronic money institution (EMI), which according to Bevis will give Tide “the option to access the same banking infrastructure as older banks”. Since the bank launched last January, 1 in 12 of all business accounts opened in the UK has been with Tide.
Now managing the accounts of over 30,000 businesses, Tide has today also launched a new vertical card and updated app design, and an integration with online accounting provider FreeAgent, which will automatically upload Tide transaction data into the software for easy expenses tracking.
Tide’s recent partnership with iwoca for business lending is also proving fruitful, with the fastest rate of service from first click to credit in the user’s account sitting at 6 minutes and 1 second.
Mark Tucker, chairman of HSBC, Britain’s largest bank, and Nigel Wilson, chief executive of Legal & General, the insurer, said that there was no room for complacency in Britain’s so-called fintech industry.
Philip Hammond, the chancellor, told an industry conference yesterday that the UK was the “global capital of fintech” and that the emerging industry contributes £7 billion to the economy.
One of China’s largest online lenders has shelved their IPO because of the regulatory crackdown on online lending; the FT reports that Lufax is waiting until the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC) required online lenders to apply for a license; the current thinking is the government will approve licenses in April, though the time frame could be a bit longer; Lufax wants to ensure they get it right instead of rushing to be first.
Seventy-eight per cent of small businesses in Mainland China expect to grow in 2018 and 97.5 per cent of small business are confident that the local economy will remain the same or improve in the next 12 months. These are the best survey results for MainlandChina since 2014.
“The high rates of technology use among Mainland China’s small businesses is one of the key drivers of growth, with over 80 per cent of businesses in Mainland China earning more than 10 per cent of revenue from online sales — ranking MainlandChina at the top of the surveyed markets.
This referenced posted blog is a good question and likely the answer is ‘yes’, but also we need to wait and see how effective. Since PSD2 is a legal imperative, one key question posed by the author is whether or not end user companies (the client buying or using a particular financial services product) wishes to share actual bank or account data with the 3rd party vendors for which API-based sharing was designed to assist.
‘When it comes to new services around B2B and working capital, I believe like any good market hypotheses to test, we need to understand a basic question when it comes to corporates – will they provide third party vendors this access? I don’t know the answer to that question, but I do know it comes down to trust and value proposition. Certainly making sure vendors have the security around your bank data will be important in this age of constant hacking threats’.
Cerberus Capital Management, L.P. and its affiliates (“Cerberus”), a global leader in alternative investing, announced today that Roberto Nicastro has become a Senior Advisor to the firm. In this role, Mr. Nicastro will consult with Cerberus as it continues its focus on investment opportunities and strategic partnerships in the European financial services sector.
The raise is set to support eToro’s expansion as it heads into new markets, and continued research and development of blockchain technology and digital assets. The round brings the platform’s total capital raised to $162m, following a signficant period of growth for the business driven in part by its foray into cryptocurrency investments.
eToro added Stellar as its eighth cryptocurrency asset listed on its Crypto Copyfund in February, joining fellow cryptos Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Ethereuem and Ripple amongst others. The trader launched its Crypto Copyfund in July 2017, which uses CFDs to enable investors to diversify across all available cryptocurrencies (weighted by market cap) with just one click.
Basically, a quantum computer doesn’t work with bits but with qubits using particles that can be in superposition (two or more quantum states added together to create another state). This is why particles can take on the value 0, or 1, or both simultaneously. The reason that this is important is that it will allow computers to process and store far more information with far less energy and far more speed than current state computers. For example, in 2016, a team of Google and Nasa scientists found a quantum computer was 100 million times faster than a conventional computer. Elsewhere, in a step towards quantum computing, researchers have guided electrons through semiconductors using incredibly short pulses of light. These extremely short, configurable pulses of light could lead to computers that operate 100,000 times faster than they do today.
This is important in banking because it could displace blockchain, ledger and digital identity developments within a decade. This is because the quantum internet would excel at sending information securely through what is known as quantum encryption. This technology enables banks and businesses to be able to send “unhackable” data over a quantum network. This is because quantum cryptography uses a mechanic called quantum key distribution (QKD), which means an encrypted message and its keys are sent separately. Tampering with such a message causes it to be automatically destroyed, with both the sender and the receiver notified of the situation.
It’s this hassle that Hnry (pronounced ‘Henry’) wants to help resolve, doing away with the need for spreadsheets, software and even costly accountants. Whether it’s income tax, GST, ACC or student loan repayments, Hnry will calculate and pay all of these for you. Same goes for your tax returns, which Hnry will complete on your behalf. It’ll also handle all your invoices, regardless of whether you work for a single client or multiple clients at the same time.
Born from a desire to change how enterprise companies and individuals interact with one another, Jrny uses AI and conversational interfaces to create more relevant, two-way channels of communication. Jrny allows businesses to handle thousands of messages instantly in an effort to build a closer relationship between company and customer.
A massive fraud that cost India’s second-largest bank at least $2 billion is highlighting concerns about vulnerabilities in institutions’ internal controls and spurring some to claim that blockchain could have prevented the crime.
In a recent incident at Punjab National Bank, a deputy branch manager and his subordinate allegedly falsified 150 letters of undertaking directing other banks to give loans to a group of jewelry companies, with PNB providing surety for those letters. Virtually all of them defaulted, causing PNB to be on the hook.
What made the fraud so difficult to detect was that, as far as its internal systems were concerned, the transactions didn’t exist. The letters of undertaking were sent using the Swift network, but none were recorded on PNB’s internal record-keeping software, which wasn’t linked to the Swift system.
That’s why some are arguing that bockchain, or distributed ledger technology, could have prevented the fraud. Because immutable records are kept on a decentralized database that multiple parties can view, it’s possible that the fraud either wouldn’t have happened or could have been detected sooner.
Naspers, the most valuable listed company in Africa, will be selling $10-billion of its shares of Chinese messaging giant Tencent to invest in fintech, classified and online food delivery businesses.
Naspers announced it will sell up to 190-million Tencent Holdings Limited shares, or 2% of Tencent’s total issued share capital. Naspers is reducing its stake in the maker of WeChat and QQ – which is worth an estimated $545-billion – from 33,2% to 31,2%.
On Tuesday, the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) announced it has opened its very own API developer platform. According to the bank, the RBC Developers platform will allow eligible external software developers, industry “innovators,” and clients to access select RBC APIs. While sharing more details about the platform, Sumit Oberai, Senior Vice President of Digital Technology at RBC, stated: “Across other industries we’ve seen the transformational effects of APIs. By providing external developers, industry innovators, and clients with access to select RBC APIs, we have the opportunity to increase connectivity, create new tools and experience for clients, and enable open and innovative collaboration to improve the future of banking.”
News Comments Today’s main news: SoFi CEO’s top 3 things to focus on. KBRA assigns prelim ratings to Prosper Marketplace Issuance Trust, Series 2018-1. Funding Circle fund dividend in line with target. Assetz Capital secures new funding. Experian acquires ClearScore. Today’s main analysis: Credit analysis and valuation methods for MPL. (A MUST-READ) Today’s thought-provoking articles: Top 5 trends of institutional […]
“First, we have to have the best selection — and not just selection of each product, but variations of those products,” Noto said. “Second, we have to provide unmatched convenience. Anytime, anywhere, on any device, you should be able to access all of your financial information, do any activity that you want across the broad spectrum of products that we’ll launch over time.”
Noto’s third initiative for the company — which helps its “members,” or customers, refinance student and mortgage loans, take out personal loans and even get career advice — had to do with speed.
Kroll Bond Rating Agency (KBRA) assigns preliminary ratings to four classes of notes issued by Prosper Marketplace Lending Issuance Trust 2018-1 (“PMIT 2018-1”). This is a $647.5 million consumer loan ABS transaction.
Preliminary Ratings Assigned: Prosper Marketplace Issuance Trust, Series 2018-1
As Marketplace lenders continue to lend at a fast pace, there has been a significant increase in the past several years in non-bank consumer, student and small business lending.
1. What are the most prevalent methods of valuing loan portfolios today?
Discounted cashflow (DCF) methodology at the loan or cohort level is the most prevalent valuation methodology used today to value marketplace loan portfolios and related assets, including tranches in securitizations and servicing rights, regardless of the lending vertical.
2. Are valuation methods standardized? If not, why not? How does this lack of a valuation standard affect investors?
Marketplace lending is a fragmented space, and it is also diverse, with innovative forms of underwriting and funding methods being deployed.
3. How do loan valuation methods differ across lending verticals?
Marketplace lending verticals cover a wide spectrum of product, ranging from $500 installment loans, to $100,000 merchant cash advances (MCAs) made to small businesses, to sub-650 FICO unsecured consumer loans to credit impaired borrowers, to student loans extended to borrowers in medical school with high future earning potential. Thus, any methodology that falls short of incorporating all impactful data to project full cashflows does not do justice to the portfolio. In essence, the assumptions used in the DCF are based on loan characteristics that have the biggest impact on prepayment, default, and recovery behavior. These loan characteristics depend on the asset class but often include underwritten payment schedule (e.g. 36 months amortizing term, 60 months amortizing term, daily pay MCA, etc.) credit metrics (e.g. FICO bands, platform ratings, repeat borrower flags), loan size (e.g. <$5K, $20-$30K, etc.), note rate, and more. These assumptions then feed into the DCF model to project principal and interest cashflows generated from the loan portfolio, incorporating prepayments and defaults, net of recoveries.
7. What about the secondary market? How are deals priced relative to what valuation methods tell us they should be priced? How do valuation analysts obtain information about private sales of loans? In the securitization market is there a valuation standard? How are these deals priced relative to the valuation of the underlying loans?
While many new platforms have started originating in the past few years, several lenders have been originating loans since early 2010s, albeit initially at lower volumes. Data on these loans has been normalized and made available for analysis by firms such as PeerIQ and dv01. More established lenders have returned to securitization markets as issuers with sizeable deals.
The types of institutional investors allocating to the marketplace lending asset class has changed dramatically, from mostly family offices and fund of funds about five years ago to institutional investors such as pensions, endowments and sovereign wealth funds today.
It is a big shift from what the typical fund used to look like just a few years ago, which:
only purchased loans from origination platforms
invested only in consumer loans
invested in loans only from the largest platforms such as Prosper and Lending Club
used a credit model to purchase only select loans from the platforms (active buying versus passively buying)
offered only one fund to allocators
The expansion of institutional investors has ushered in higher investment standards for this asset class which now require a very high level of portfolio management expertise, risk management oversight and robust operational infrastructure before making an allocation.
As a result, these allocators and investors have generally shifted investment activity towards the top five trends:
investing through a combination of loans, securitizations and warehouse lines of credit
investing in multiple sub-asset classes
using both well established and newer origination platforms
investing both actively and passively from platform
Over the last several weeks, two notable cases in federal court challenging certain aspects of the business model of marketplace lending companies headed down separate paths. First, in an action brought against Kabbage, Inc. and Celtic Bank Corporation in the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts,1 the parties agreed to, and the Court approved, a stipulation staying the proceedings pending an arbitrator’s review of whether the claims in that action are covered by the arbitration provisions in the governing loan agreements. Second, in an action against marketplace lender Avant in the United States District Court for the District of Colorado,2 the Court accepted a magistrate judge’s recommendation to remand the case to state court over Avant’s objection.
According to Fundbox, it takes the average small business 21 days to get paid, 81% of small- business invoices are 30 days past due, and the value of small businesses’ unpaid invoices is $825 billion — which is equivalent to 5% of U.S. GDP.
Fundbox’s underwriting software pulls data from accounting systems, invoicing systems, payments (e.g. screen scraping from PayPal), public records, web interactions, social networks and tax returns. It uses artificial intelligence to assess the creditworthiness of the company and can render a credit decision in minutes based on the business’s incoming and outgoing invoices. Borrowers pay by the week for whatever credit they use.
Using the new Fundbox Pay product, a small business that has provided a product or service (a lawyer, say, or a construction company) puts in a request for payment and gets paid immediately by Fundbox. The seller pays a 2.9% transaction fee, in return for immediate cash flow and not having to worry about the buyer defaulting.
Even Financial, the technology platform powering financial services online, has expanded its strategic partnership with Credit.com, a go-to source for expert information about credit scoring, credit reporting, credit cards and personal finance. Even Financial will now power Credit.com’s personal loans marketplace, as well as its related content tools.
With this expanded partnership, Credit.com will provide its users access with a native, personalized and optimized loan matching experience, powered by Even Financial’s proprietary technology. Even’s technology utilizes machine learning, big data and an extensive network of touchpoints and financial products to provide a personalized experience.
The firm aims to become a one-stop shop that focuses on lending service for micro, small-to-medium sized enterprises (“SMEs”) in China. The company is specifically engaged with micro financing services and financial advisory services, operating through the subsidiary Arki E-Commerce, and VIE, Arki Network.
Digital Assets Data, a NYC-based fintech startup, raised a seed funding round of undisclosed amount.
Vestigo Ventures, an early-stage venture capital firm focused on fintech, made the investment. In conjunction with the funding, Mark Casady, general partner of Vestigo Ventures, will serve on Digital Assets Data’s Advisory Board.
The £311m Funding Circle SME Income fund has revealed its latest dividend of 1.625p per share, in line with its forecast rate.
Its eighth pay-out and seventh at the same level – it’s first was 1p, the latest dividend will be paid on 30 April 2018 to shareholders on the register as at the close of business on 23 March 2018 (the record date) and the corresponding ex-dividend date will be 22 March 2018.
ASSETZ Capital has secured a new line of institutional funding that it says will widen its scope and scale of lending.
The peer-to-peer lender said the unnamed institutional investor was part of a $100bn (£71.5bn) global multi-asset manager and would provide funding dedicated to the residential property bridging, refurbishment and conversion markets.
In an update to its first release, Monzo has added a new category to its marketplace beta: investments.
AltFi can now reveal that users on the beta are able to access digital wealth investment accounts from Scalable Capital, Wealthify, Wealthsimple and WiseAlpha, peer-to-peer lending accounts with Zopa, and property-backed investments with Bricklane.com and Octopus Choice.
Challenger banks like OakNorth, Masthaven, Aldermore and Axis Bank are coming out ahead of the game by offering savings rates more than 1 per cent higher than the average offered by high street incumbents.
New research conducted by fellow challenger Gatehouse Bank revealed today that the average one year fixed-term deposit account offered by UK challengers pays 1.82 per cent on average in interest returns, compared to 0.63 per cent by high street competitors.
Likewise, the average 2 year fixed-term deposit account at a challenger bank pays 1.29 per cent more than the high street, coming in at 2.05 per cent on average compared to only 0.76 per cent from incumbents.
Experienced bankers are moving into the alternative finance sector, creating an ideal environment for SMEs seeking finance, according to alternative finance provider ThinCats.
The shift towards digital banking was highlighted in a 2016 study from the Federation of Small Businesses, with 1,500 towns being without bank branches as banks aim to direct their customers towards digital banking.
Whilst more than 90 per cent of small businesses use internet banking, face-to-face services are still valuable to businesses when it comes to making decisions regarding the future of their company and obtaining finance.
The latest SME Finance Monitor, from insight agency BDRC, shows 32 per cent of the 130,000 firms interviewed were aware of P2P lending in the fourth quarter of 2017 .
When combined with crowdfunding, awareness of these forms of finance was 46 per cent. This was up from 36 per cent at the start of 2017.
Larger SMEs tend to be more aware of P2P, the research shows, with 48 per cent of firms with 50 to 249 employees familiar with the sector, compared with just 32 per cent of one-man bands and 31 per cent of those with fewer than 10 members of staff.
P2P lending platform Lendy has grown its investor base to 20,000 in the past year, according to a statement by the firm, representing a more than 50 per cent increase.
The secured property lender has seen strong demand in particular from investors under 40 years of age. It had 13,000 investors in total a year ago, it says. Investors aged below 40 now represent 50 per cent of the property platform’s investor base.
Investors, Lendy adds, have now received more than £37m in interest from Lendy loans since inception in 2012, up from £16m at the end of 2016.
In a speech to the Credit Summit on Thursday, Jonathan Davidson, executive director of supervision – retail and authorisations at the FCA, said there are worrying numbers of households who are too deeply in debt.
He said one in five mortgages today are interest-only mortgages, many of which were made at the height of the credit boom to borrowers with little equity in their homes and not a lot of disposable income. These mortgages will not mature until about 2032.
He said the £14.8m fine paid by rent-to-own firm BrightHouse last year shows how seriously the regulator takes the issue.
On a more positive note, Davidson reassured the industry that consumer debt in the UK has not reached levels that are likely to be harmful to lenders.
He also said there has been progress by the sector in addressing conduct issues and that “by and large you do a good job for us, your customers”.
Backed to the tune of €650m ($800m) Mingo has clearly impressed more than a few crypto-noobs. Its versatility and learning curve should ensure it stays ahead of the crowd heading past St. Pat’s into the 2018 summer.
The company already has dozens of success stories to tell since its 2014 foundation – including itself, which has raised $1.5m to date.
“We’re addressing two markets across two countries with Flender: business lending and consumer lending in the UK and Ireland – an established market currently worth £2.5bn ($3.46bn) per annum,” co-founder and sales director Oli Cavanagh recently told Silicon Republic.
For PayPal CEO Dan Schulman, the main driver of his company’s gains to date has been “the digitization of cash.”
With 227 million subscribers, 65 percent of whom reside outside of North America, PayPal has seized on this “explosion” of digital payments around the world, Schulman said.
In its latest quarter, PayPal added 8.6 million net new active users, a record since Schulman joined the payment processing giant as president and CEO in 2014.
With over 50 percent of its revenues coming from outside North America,PayPal has started to leverage its international ecosystem to benefit small businesses in the United States as well, the CEO said.
“In North America, … only 5 percent of small businesses export internationally. Eighty percent of small businesses on PayPal in the U.S. export internationally,” Schulman said.
About a year after Experianreceived authorization from the U.K.’s FCA, the company has made further inroads into the nation with the acquisition of U.K.-based ClearScore. The deal is anticipated to close for $385 million (£275 million).
Founded in 2014, ClearScore has onboarded 6 million members in the U.K. through its free membership model. The company matches individuals to personal financial products, offers free credit reports, and provides financial education. The company is projected to generate $55 million in revenue in 2018, a 50% increase over what it earned in 2017.
Debitum is a borderless, small business financing network that seeks to revolutionize the alternative finance industry to enable more small to medium businesses to obtain loans in situations that may previously have been difficult, time consuming, or outright impossible.
According to a review by the World Bank, although SMEs’ more than 2/3rds of SMEs do not have access to credit. Over recent years alternative financing via peer-to-peer lending, crowdfunding, balance-sheet lending, invoice trading (loans backed by account receivables) and VAT financing, has served to assist financing for SMEs, however no single solution encompasses all fields of business.
As a result, the global credit gap still stands at a whopping $2 trillion, accounted by the World Bank Organization and the IFC.
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Bank of Lithuania have agreed to work together to support the development of the FinTech ecosystems and encourage greater financial innovation in the two countries.
The FinTech Co-operation Agreement between the two countries was signed on the sidelines of the Money 20/20 Asia conference in Singapore today.
FMA today published guidance on fair dealing in advertising and communications for licensed crowdfunding services, peer-to-peer lenders and the companies that offer financial products on these platforms.
The fair dealing provisions of the Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013 ban:
misleading and deceptive conduct
false or misleading representations
offers of financial products in the course of unsolicited meetings.
The Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) and Bank Negara Malaysia established Brokerage Industry Digitisation Group (BRIDGe) yesterday, a joint working group between the regulators and industry to accelerate digitisation of the stockbroking industry.
News Comments Today’s main news: Lending Club losses extend to Q4 2017. LendingClub to settle lawsuit for $125M. Groundfloor launches online public offering. Even Financial gets backing from American Express. LendInvest launches buy-to-let calculator online. Today’s main analysis: Lend Academy reviews LendingClub’s Q4 2017 results. Today’s thought-provoking articles: Equity sharing and home ownership. How millennials move emerging markets. Why Australia needs […]
LendingClub’s losses extend into Q4 2017. AT: “This is an example of how litigation can eat into profits and impact growth. Nevertheless, despite continued losses and expected pending losses, LendingClub is looking good with increased originations. But it’s not out of the water yet.”
Groundfloor launches online public offering. AT: “This is significant because Groundfloor offers the first SEC-authorized opportunity in payment-dependent notes for non-accredited real estate crowdfunding investors. For $10 per share, anyone–literally–can invest in Groundfloor. While I applaud this opportunity for opening doors to virtually everyone, a part of me wonders if Groundfloor can raise enough operating capital by selling common stock for $10 per share. How long will it be before they are profitable? Is this a good ground floor price?”
Lending Club lost money for a fourth year in a row last year, as it wrote a big cheque to settle class-action lawsuits connected to its governance glitches of 2016.
The San Francisco-based company, the biggest listed online lender in America, said on Tuesday that net losses for the fourth quarter almost tripled from a year earlier, to $92m, as it agreed a $125m settlement to resolve civil suits stemming from the loan-mis-selling scandal that blew up almost two years ago. About $48m of the sum would be covered by insurance, the company said, with the remainder to be paid from liquid assets of about $650m.
The loss for the full year came to $154m, wider than the previous year’s $146m.
Under the agreement, which was announced Tuesday, the San Francisco-based online lender expects to pay $77.25 million. An additional $47.75 million is expected to be covered by LendingClub’s insurance, bringing the total payout to $125 million. The deal is subject to court approval.
Lending Club also underwhelmed in its revenue as the company raked in $156.5 million during its fourth quarter, below Wall Street’s consensus estimate of $157.6 million, according to FactSet. The figure did increase 20% compared to the year-ago quarter.
On an adjusted basis, the company posted earnings of a penny per share, compared to a loss of 2 cents in the year-ago quarter.
The company also experienced a 23% annual growth in originations, which reached over $2.4 billion.
LendingClub delivered another record quarter of $156.5 million in revenue up slightly from their previous quarter. Originations were slightly down from the third quarter at $2.436 billion. They reported a GAAP net loss of $92.1 million in the fourth quarter which was affected by the class action litigation settlement expense.
LendingClub provided the below guidance for Q1 2018 and reaffirmed their guidance for 2018:
First Quarter 2018
Total Net Revenue in the range of $145 million to $155 million
Net Income (Loss) in the range of $(25) million to $(20) million
Adjusted EBITDA in the range of $5 million to $10 million
Reconciling Items between net loss and non-GAAP adjusted EBITDA consisting of stock-based compensation of approximately $19 million, and depreciation and amortization and other net adjustments of approximately $11 million
Full Year 2018
Total Net Revenue in the range of $680 million to $705 million
Net Income (Loss) in the range of $(53) million to $(38) million
Adjusted EBITDA in the range of $75 million to $90 million
Reconciling Items between net loss and non-GAAP adjusted EBITDA consisting of stock-based compensation of approximately $77 million, and depreciation and amortization and other net adjustments of approximately $51 million
Groundfloor, the first issuer qualified by the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission to offer real estate based payment dependent notes that are available to non-accredited investors, today announced that it has raised a total of $4.3 million from 687 participating investors in a combination of two recent financings, a private online bridge note closed late last year and an initial closing of its online public offering of equity. In each case, the company kicked off the invitation-only raises to customers and friends of the company with a $1M target, surpassing that in under 48 hours. Due to increased growth opportunities and strong demand, the company has today expanded the equity raise to the public.
Groundfloor is offering a total of up to 530,000 shares of Common Stock at $10 per share in its online public offering. Investor benefits include: no investor fees for life2; access to regular shareholder-only loan offerings; and invitations to attend annual Groundfloor shareholder events.
Recently increased expectations that the Fed may raise interest rates in the future has investors rebalancing their portfolios, with a shift out of equity into debt, as bond yields are expected to increase. Twelve-month bond yields have recently inched up to 1.97 percent.
By comparison, Groundfloor investors have earned an average of 13.6 percent per year over the past three years, which represents over 6x the yield of a current one year Treasury note, and over 1,000 percent more than they would have made if their money had been in a CD or savings account over this period.1 Groundfloor’s retail investors create their own portfolios of real estate debt investments in the fix and flip residential housing market, and the loans on which the investments are based are secured by a first lien position against the underlying real asset.
• High yield potential
• Lower barrier to entry: Even if you have a very less amount of money, you can still invest even in large commercial real estate projects through equity crowdfunding and enjoy the benefits of the real estate i.e., strong returns and lower volatility.
• No self-employment taxes
• Higher returns
• The risks. An investor should know how to evaluate the risk factors like local economy volatility and chances of higher than expected construction costs. Due diligence is what is required.
• Liquidity constraint: These investments need to be held up for a period of five years or so, and hence one should go for this option if this much bandwidth is available, lack of liquidity is not there, and an investor is comfortable with the invested amount to be tied up for several years.
• It’s still an early option: It is still an early option to be considered as the performance track record and validation is still not complete and individual investors are still trying to figure it out.
• Lack of control: Since it is a passive investment, the investors are not involved in the day to day activities and therefore have limited ability and control over the operations required.
In a rising tide of fintech apps, RealyInvest is emerging as a new way for beginning investors to access the high-priced world of premier commercial real estate right from their smartphones.
RealyInvestors can purchase fractional shares of REITs (Real Estate Investment Trusts) for as little as $5. Investors can also own shares of commercial real estate NNN Assets, such as a building long-term leased to Starbucks, for as little as $20.
All investments, rental income and dividend earnings can be managed right on your smartphone. Fees range from $1 to $3 per month, depending on investment options.
A handful of companies, including those backed by marquee Silicon Valley names such as Andreessen Horowitz and Mark Zuckerberg’s philanthropic organization, are experimenting with a product that essentially lets them take an ownership position in a house along with the homeowner. The agreements, called shared-equity contracts, provide a new way for investors to get exposure to rising home prices across the U.S.
Shared-equity products are aimed at new buyers who need help with a down payment, or current homeowners looking for an alternative to a cash-out mortgage refinancing or a home-equity loan. The first use has caught the attention of mortgage-finance giant Freddie Mac,which recently agreed to buy loans on properties where one firm,Unison Agreement Corp. , contributes to the down payment.
Landed Inc. offers these down-payment contracts to teachers and other educators. Last year, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative , a philanthropy co-founded by FacebookInc.’s chief executive, gave Landed $5 million to start a new fund.
The length of the contracts can vary from a few years to 30. Homeowners can repay early, including if they sell their house before the term ends. How much they end up owing depends on how the value of their home changes. Because the funds are equity, not a borrowing, they don’t require monthly payments.
Even Financial, the technology platform powering financial services online, has secured a strategic investment round totaling $3 million. The round includes an investment from American Express Ventures, the strategic investment unit of American Express, as well as Plug & Play and Arab Angels.
With this investment, Even Financial will expand its team and advance its proprietary technology, which allows financial institutions and other partners to scale customer acquisition and remain competitive in the growing online financial services industry.
“In 2017, Fundrise investments earned an 11.44%* total return on investment, including over $16 million in dividends paid out to investors. Delivering attractive, consistent cash flow is a core part of our mission to offer you a better way to invest.”
South by Southwest Interactive Innovation Award winner and 2018 LendIt Fintech Industry Award finalist Blinker, the only peer-to-peer e-commerce platform that provides an end-to-end solution for anyone buying, selling or financing cars, announced two major milestones for its business today:
Blinker is now available in the largest car markets in the US – Beginning today, Blinker is expanding its proprietary e-commerce and loan origination platform from Texas and Colorado to California and Florida, allowing millions of customers to buy, sell and finance vehicles easier, quicker and safer with other people. Thirty percent of vehicle sales across the US every year are between people, yet private-party marketplaces including Craigslist, Letgo, Autotrader, Cars.com and Facebook Marketplace don’t have services such as integrated financing or lien payoff support. Leveraging artificial intelligence and machine learning, Blinker customers get guidance and tools to complete the entire purchase process themselves, from instant vehicle valuation to real-time auto loan approval to e-signing documents to secure funds transfer, all for free within Blinker’s mobile app.
Blinker joins with Ally to offer best-in-class auto protection products – Blinker will now give customers the option to add Ally’s vehicle protection coverage, including Ally Guaranteed Asset Protection (GAP) and Ally Premier Protection vehicle service contracts, for their vehicle purchases in the app. GAP covers the difference between the cash value of a vehicle and what Blinker customers still owe on their loan if the vehicle is totaled or stolen. Ally vehicle service contracts cover the repair cost for over 7,400 mechanical, electrical, safety or digital components, as well as some related expenses like trip interruption, rental car coverage, towing and 24/7 roadside assistance.
Scammers have taken to Zelle, the Venmo alternative backed by U.S. banks, to defraud consumers who believe the service includes the same protections they’ve come to expect from PayPal. A number of customers report having lost hundreds, or even thousands of dollars, over Zelle, when they used it for transactions with people they didn’t know – like tickets bought off a Craigslist posting, for example.
Malicious cyber activity cost the U.S. economy between $57 billion and $109 billion in 2016, the White House said Friday.
The estimate comes in a Council of Economic Advisers report on the impact of cyberattacks on U.S. government and industry. The report details the range of threats that U.S. entities face from actors including corporations and countries such as Russia, China, Iran and North Korea.
The council’s estimate represents between 0.31% and 0.58% of the 2016 U.S. gross domestic product. For comparison, the report cites a Center for Strategic and International Studies report that estimated the cost of malicious cyber activities against U.S. entities at $107 billion in 2013, 0.64% of GDP that year.
Speaking to The Drum in the final instalment of a four-part video series with Falcon.io exploring social media strategies, she admitted that while it can be a challenge, using data to understand her audience’s wants and needs has helped her shape content which is likely to resonate.
Fox says she has been finding success on the unlikeliest of social media platforms – Pinterest.
“All our content is more lifestyle focused than finance focused,” she explained.
OpenClose, an industry-leading multi-channel loan origination system (LOS) and mortgage fintech provider, announced that it has added staff to its integration and customer support departments. The new hires will help enhance OpenClose’s existing software products, facilitate digital mortgage processes, produce fintech-level innovation and provide excellence in customer support. The company also recently added three senior software engineers to its development team.
You usually have only a couple of weeks to repay the loan, and the typical APR is almost 400.00%, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. If you can’t pay it back and have to take out a new payday loan to pay off the first, you could end up stuck in a vicious cycle of predatory debt.
The business lender, which currently only has an iPhone app for investors to access, monitor and manage their accounts, is now advertising for a global mobile apps product manager and for an Android developer.
Both positions are based in the UK.
“We have an ambitious roadmap for this year and want to launch two new apps (Android and iOS) for our investors,” the job advert on the Funding Circle website said.
ONLINE lending platforms may partner with banks to fund and market credit products in the future, even sharing the approval process and compliance, in one scenario outlined by global banking regulators.
A number of peer-to-peer lenders have already partnered with banks on a smaller scale. For example, Metro Bank has lent through Zopa’s platform and Santander has referred borrowers to Funding Circle. However, these tie-ups have not gone as far as the report’s scenario suggests in terms of becoming a joint venture.
Square Pie, which started life as a stall in London’s Old Spitalfields Market, expanded with the help of a “pie bond” that promised 8% annual interest over four years. The bond was offered through one of Britain’s biggest crowdfunding platforms, Crowdcube.
A total of 324 investors signed up, lending more than £650,000 to fund Square Pie restaurants and its efforts to improve supermarket sales. Square Pie has gone into administration — the first failure of a business that issued a mini bond on a crowdfunding site.…
Lendingblock is one such business. The soon-to-launch platform is, in its founder Steve Swain’s words, “an open exchange for cryptocurrency loans”.
Lendingblock is in the middle of a three-stage Initial Coin Offering that will conclude in March. The first phase has already been completed, raising the equivalent of $500,000. The offering has a hard cap of $10m.
Golden Bull Ltd., an online peer-to-peer lending platform in China, plans to offer up to $9 million in shares on Nasdaq under the ticker symbol “DNJR.” The Shanghai-based company, which was founded in 2015, provides borrowers access to short-term loans.
Finnest is an interesting online lender operating in the DACH countries. The peer to peer platform was launched to provide SME funding supported by individual investors but the company is now expanding by providing loans of €10 million and higher. Institutional investors such as insurance companies, funds, family offices and banks will now be able to invest in large SMEs on “FinnestPro.”
Millennials in advanced economies have come under pressure in recent years, thanks to stagnating wages, rising house prices and escalating student debt. But an altogether different trend is taking place in many emerging markets where millennials are seeing their prospects rapidly improve. This in turn is creating an investment opportunity, as millennials in these countries are becoming hugely influential on the prospects for emerging market equities.
Millennials will account for half of the global workforce by 2020, meaning they will be one of the most influential groups in shaping the economy and society, including consumption habits, policy and how companies may want to market and brand themselves. They are disrupting traditional industries and companies are having to adapt. This presents investment opportunities, but it also presents new investment risks.
Based on ERC-20, the multilayered cryptocurrency platform will host a marketplace that allows developmental phases. The first phase focuses on micro loans (small loans), rent payments, student loans and peer-to-peer payment processing.
As trust grows on the platform, phase 2 will be implemented to cater to sales distribution, global small business investing and global commercial and residential real estate crowdfunding while the third stage will serve charity and insurance. The final phase will be dedicated to maintenance and future developments that may include additional currency adoption, feature adding etc.
Valorem (VLR) is the token offered. The exchange rate stands at 1 ETH= 1000 VLR. There is a total supply of 200 million tokens of which 150 million are available during the ICO and 50 million will be kept in reserve. Valorem will not be mined.
People born between roughly 1982 and 2002 are set to receive the biggest inheritance boom of any post-war generation. The Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) estimated the figure will be around $4 trillion in the UK, Canada and United States.
NewsBTC: Now it seems that you have no experience with banking services yet. How do you plan to cover this area?
Now I can say we understand confidently how banking works and how it should work in the crypto industry. By 2020, we’re going to have a licensed bank and transform it into a crypto one with a network of crypto terminals.
A bit sooner, in 2018, we plan to release crypto e-wallets with linked debit cards. Miners will be able to use recently mined coins right away, transferring them to their wallets immediately. We’re also designing a platform for peer-to-peer lending.
Australian investors and borrowers are increasingly adopting peer to peer lending platforms according to the results of survey undertaken by ASIC. The results of the survey suggest that as much as $300 million of personal and business loans were underwritten by peer to peer lenders over the course of the last fiscal year. That represents a doubling in the amount that was lent on such platforms during the 2015/2016 financial year.
Australia’s credit rating system is failing both borrowers and lenders. Many borrowers are unaware of their own credit scores and our research shows they have trouble applying for suitable loans. Lenders are also struggling with too little information, causing them to extend loans to those they shouldn’t and restrict loans to worthy borrowers.
Upcoming changes to Australia’s credit reporting system could remedy these issues.
Under the new credit reporting regime, both lenders and borrowers will have access to more data, such as monthly payment histories on loans and credit cards.
More innovation ahead in mortgage lending
For higher-risk borrowers, novel techniques to assess credit risk (such as analysis of social media accounts) may be the answer to distinguish good borrowers from bad.
Unable to qualify for a loan from her bank, Johnston searched online for private lenders and found a website for what appeared to be a legitimate company calling itself North Clear Credit.
Everything about it — the variety of loans offered, the glowing testimonials, the company description — seemed professional. In fact, a customer who later reported North Clear Credit to police says an officer told her the website looked legitimate.
For Johnston and Mood, the terms were appealing. The money could be paid back monthly over five years at an interest rate substantially lower than what they would be charged elsewhere.
Johnston completed an online application and was approved for a $20,000 loan.
Within a few days, Johnston and Mood had lost $3,500, and two North Clear Credit “representatives” with whom Johnston had been corresponding had disappeared.
Blackchain Solutions Inc. (the “Company” or “Blackchain”) (CSE: BIS), announces a private placement of up to 3,400,000 units at a price of $0.18 per unit, for gross proceeds of $612,000. Each unit consists of one common share and one share purchase warrant. Each warrant is exercisable at a price of $0.22 per share for a term of two years.
Proceeds generated from this financing will be used to initiate and support the filing of multiple patents and trademarks related to the Blackchain Crypto Credit Rating API and P2P Lending Platform.
News Comments Today’s main news: PeerIQ wraps up $12M Series A financing, expands into traditional lending. LendInvest 5.25% bond offer closes Friday. Confirmed: LendInvest pulls out of P2P Finance Association. RateSetter enter hire purchase market with new partner. Yirendai’s Q2 results. Dianrong raises $220M from Asian investors. Lending Loop launches auto-invest, raises $2M. Today’s main analysis: Consumers prefer digital banking capabilities […]
PeerIQ raises $12M for expansion into traditional lending. AT: “This is not only a big boon to PeerIQ, but for the entire alternative lending industry. As the alternative and traditional lending ecosystems grow integrate more, consumers will benefit, lenders will benefit, and tech solutions providers will benefit. The financial services industry will become more efficient on the whole and the global financial system will normalize again as all players settle into marketplace-driven and agreed-upon terms for conducting transactions.”
Consumers prefer digital banking capabilities over branch proximity. AT: “As a consumer, I can validate this. Having opted to use my local bank’s mobile check deposit feature, I’ve discovered some frustrations with banks that I hadn’t noticed before (probably because I’ve been a loyal credit union customer for 15 year, but that’s another story). More and more, I’m contemplating an online bank. I do 100% of my business online and spend 90% of my time connected. Why do I need a physical bank?”
Oxford U. gets into fintech. AT: “Short courses I get. I’m not sure what the benefit to students is in a university offering a full degree program for fintech, just as I don’t understand the reason for a degree in digital marketing.”
PeerIQ, a provider of data and analytics for the lending sector, today announced that it has closed a $12 million Series A funding round, co-led by TransUnion, Hearst’s Financial Venture Fund and Macquarie Group, along with existing investors Uprising and former Morgan Stanley CEO John Mack. With the new capital, PeerIQ will expand its core platform to unlock more value for its clients, extend beyond online into traditional lending markets, and collaborate on new product initiatives with its strategic partners.
Already a core data partner to PeerIQ, TransUnion is deepening its relationship, with Steve Chaouki, executive vice president and head of TransUnion’s financial services business unit, joining the PeerIQ board. Shea Wallon, managing director of Hearst’s Financial Venture Fund, which invests in early-stage financial information, service and technology companies, is joining the board as well.
A significant shift from branch dependence to digital preference
A redefinition of the drivers of bank consideration and purchase
An increase in demand for digital account opening
A Shift in Dependence on Branches
The research found that segments that placed the highest importance on branches for their checking relationship shrunk significantly in the past year, at the same time that those segments with the lowest branch attachment grew. The same was true for segments that were the most dependent on branches for ongoing transactions. These segments also shrunk significantly over the past year.
A New Definition of Convenience
The biggest news is that the drivers of ‘perceived convenience’ start with an organization’s digital capabilities. In fact, the importance of branch-centric factors have dropped in each of the past three years of the study. This is especially true for consumers aged 18-54.
Another significant trend of note is the increasing importance of being able to access cash without a fee, irrespective of primary bank proximity.
The Novantas shopping survey found that 79% of consumers are doing at least some of their shopping for new checking accounts digitally, with 54% using only digital channels. These digital-only shoppers are both older and wealthier, with the size of the digital-only shopper category increasing in size.
Juvo, a pioneer in mobile Identity Scoring, today announced a $40 million USD Series B funding round led by New Enterprise Associates (NEA) and Wing Venture Capital. Also included in the round are investments from SignalFire as well as add-on investments from existing investors. Juvo will leverage these new funds to drive global growth and scale, with a particular emphasis on Asia, Latin America and Europe, and broaden its suite of financial service offerings targeting the financially excluded. The company also announced the appointment of Peter Wagner, founding partner of Wing, to Juvo’s board of directors.
Juvo, who came out of stealth mode 10 months ago, was founded with an overarching mission: to establish financial identities for the billions of people worldwide who are creditworthy, yet financially excluded. By partnering with mobile operators and financial institutions around the world, Juvo uses sophisticated, data science-based credit algorithms to identify previously anonymous prepaid subscribers, enabling them to build financial identities and gain access to basic financial services.
Juvo currently partners with seven mobile operators around the world, with a reach of over 500 million subscribers across 25 countries and four continents. Juvo’s operator partners have reduced churn by 50 percent or greater, while lifting average revenue per user (ARPU) numbers by as much as 15 percent. Most importantly, operators across the board are seeing an average increase in subscriber lifetime value of 65 percent.
Reverse Mortgage Funding LLC (RMF), a leading national reverse mortgage lender dedicated to helping older Americans achieve financial peace of mind, today announced that it has been named one of the nation’s top reverse mortgage lenders by LendingTree, a leading online lending exchange that connects consumers with multiple lenders, banks, and credit partners. Based on loan volume from the top reverse mortgage lenders for the third quarter of 2016 analyzed by LendingTree, RMF was chosen for consistently scoring high approval ratings and reviews among consumers.
Called Surface Plus and Surface Plus for Business, the two programs are available in the US only as of noon ET on August 1. The plans can be purchased in the US Microsoft brick-and-mortar stores or online at Microsoft.com.
Students seem to be one of the primary, if not the main, target of the new Surface Plus program.
Microsoft’s Surface Plus page is now live. It notes that new Surface Pros will go for $34 per month for 24 months; Surface Laptops for $42 per month for 24 months and Surface Books for $63 per month for 24 months under the plan. Payment plans are arranged with Klarna Inc.
Released by Blackmoon Financial Group today, Blackmoon Crypto is designed to enable verified asset managers to create and manage tokenized funds in a legally compliant manner. Operating in nine countries, Blackmoon has attracted $2.5 million to date in investment from firms including Target Global and Flint Capital.
For the financial industry, which has long dealt with compliance requirements, New York City-based Even Financial is out with a Programmatic Compliance Tool that helps to semi-automate the process of staying within boundaries.
In real time and via an API, the tool looks at the blog, web or app page where a client’s ad for a financial product will appear. Image recognition analyzes daily screen grabs to assess ad placement. The tool also parses the surrounding text on the page to detect any issues that could pose problems with US federal or state regulations, as well as any nearby content that could be embarrassing for the advertising financial service.
CEO and co-founder Phillip Rosen told me that Even’s clients are financial companies — including Lending Club and Discover Loans — which run ads and offer affiliate links for loans, credit cards or other products on about 200 sites, blogs and apps.
The Center for Financial Inclusion at Accion (CFI) and the Institute of International Finance (IIF), with the support of MetLife Foundation, today released a new report examining how partnerships between mainstream financial institutions and fintechs are expanding access to the formal financial economy to the unserved and underserved, particularly in emerging markets.
The report, “How Financial Institutions and Fintechs Are Partnering for Inclusion: Lessons from the Frontlines” is based on 24 in-depth interviews with firms and experts from around the world, and highlights 14 partnerships in as many countries. The report identifies four key financial inclusion challenges in emerging markets that mainstream financial institutions address through fintech partnerships:
Peer-to-peer lending group LendInvest is offering investors exposure to the property market and a 5.25% return from through a retail bond.
The LendInvest bond is offering a return of 5.25% with a maturity date of 2022, the first time a bond has been listed on Orb paying over 5% since April 2016. Neither has there been a retail bond listed on Orb that has a maturity of five years since Orb opened in 2010.
The bond can be held in ISAs and self-invested personal pensions (Sipps) and the minimum investment is £2,000. It can be purchased through a number of investment platforms including, Hargreaves Lansdown, AJ Bell Securities, Alliance Trust Savings, Barclays Bank, Equiniti Financial Services, Interactive Investor, Redmayne Bentley, and Syndicate Room.
The Peer-to-Peer Finance Association (P2PFA) has confirmed that LendInvest has withdrawn its membership of the self-regulatory body.
The P2PFA said communication of LendInvest’s intention to withdraw from the P2PFA with immediate effect had been received and the lender is no longer a member of the association.
“As we continue to scale the business, we’re increasingly looking to diversify our funding model and expand our capacity to lend to underserved borrowers, as well as to create new entry points to an attractive asset class that suits a broader range of investors seeking competitive risk-adjusted returns,” said Christian Faes, co-founder and CEO of LendInvest.
Set up in May 2016, the advice unit offers regulatory feedback to firms developing automated models providing low-cost advice.
So far 17 firms have worked with the unit, which was launched following the Financial Advice Market Review, a joint initiative by the Treasury and the FCA to look at ways to bridge the gap between people who could benefit from financial advice and those who can afford it.
The university’s Saïd Business School announced on Wednesday that it will launch an online short course in fintech — financial technology for the uninitiated — that is designed to help prepare business executives for a future where more and more financial services functions are based around tech.
Oxford has launched the programme in conjunction with educational technology firm GetSmarter, which was recently acquired by fellow ed-tech business 2U for $103 million (£78 million).
Business Insider chatted with Axel Lehmann, chief operating officer of Swiss bank UBS, to ask how the organisation is coming to terms with fast-changing world of fintech.
Axel Lehmann: True change is really coming from outside the industry.
It’s less the technology, as such, providing a transformative element in the banking industry. It’s really alternative business models that have the potential to shake up everything and eat into our cake.
AL: I truly believe that whole question of robotics and artificial intelligence over a time horizon of four to eight years will fundamentally change the banking business. As banks, we understand that our business is all about data. These technologies have the potential to really fundamentally change the way we operate in terms of getting smarter with the customer, understanding what kind of products we should offer and so on.
AL: Dealing with fintechs is a cultural shift that needs to take place and you want to have the local people to innovate. At UBS we have a systematic process on how we expose ourselves to fintech companies.
L: We have to be mindful going forward. Regulation shouldn’t stifle innovation. The banks should welcome when regulators like the PRA in the UK or the MAS in Singapore open up to fin tech and allow companies to better explore potential changes in the business model. The one request we would have is a level playing field.
Increasingly regulation will have to shift to a more functional regulatory approach. At the moment, if I’m a bank I’m regulated like a bank. If I’m an insurance company, I’m regulated like an insurance company. However some of these lending platforms are partially unregulated although to the customer it looks the same as a regulated offering. To avoid regulatory arbitrage regulators will have to move to a more functional perspective.
While a few traditional financial institutions continue to view fintechs as pure competition, there is a broad realization that the way customers and businesses consume financial services is changing faster than banks are able to adapt—especially while maintaining focus on a premier experience for full-service banking customers.
Failure to adjust to changing expectations and preferences will result in falling behind the market while more nimble, non-traditional players poach current customers and dominate the attention of the next generation of account holders.
In the second quarter of 2017, Yirendai facilitated RMB 8,189.6 million (US$1,208.0 million) of loans to 138,529 qualified individual borrowers on its online marketplace, representing a year-over-year growth of 80%; 70.9% of the borrowers were acquired from online channels; 51.2% of the loan volume was originated from online channels and nearly 100% of the online volume was facilitated through mobile.
In the second quarter of 2017, Yirendai facilitated 199,591 investors with total investment amount of RMB 11,446.7 million (US$1,688.5 million), 100% of which was facilitated through its online platform and 90% of which was facilitated through its mobile application.
For the second quarter of 2017, total net revenue was RMB 1,183.1 million (US$174.5 million), an increase of 61% year over year; net income was RMB 269.1 million (US$39.7 million), an increase of 3% year over year.
Shares of Yirendai(NYSE:YRD) are plunging today, down by 16% as of 12:25 p.m. EDT, after the peer-to-peer lender reported second-quarter earnings.
The company’s loan volume grew 80% year over year, and is up by 18% from the first quarter, continuing an amazing streak of growth. Revenue grew by 61% year over year (16% from last quarter), and both loans and revenue handily surpassed the company’s own expectations.
Loans and revenue increased by 18% and 16%, respectively, during the quarter, but total expenses shot up by 29%, including a 32% rise in sales and marketing expenses. This is the main reason net income fell 23% from last quarter, and grew by just 3% from last year, despite the 61% revenue growth.
Victor Basta, cofounder and CEO of London-based Magister Advisors, wrote in a blog post shared with Business Insider ahead of publication: “Many fintech companies are valued too highly in financing rounds, and need years of performance for their ‘cash value’ to catch up to the financing round valuations.
JPMorgan reportedly plans to develop a robot to execute stock trades, essentially replacing the human touch in the process.
Daniel Ciment, JPMorgan’s head of global equities electronic trading, told the Financial Times that the AI — known as LOXM — has been used in the bank’s European equities algorithms business since the first quarter and will be launched across Asia and the U.S. by year’s end.
InCred Finance, a non-banking financial company backed by private equity firms and former Deutsche Bank co-CEO Anshu Jain, is looking to make acquisitions to start microfinance and vehicle loan businesses as part of efforts to expand its loan book.
Chinese peer-to-peer lending platform Dianrong said on Wednesday it raised $220 million from a group of investors led by Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC Pte Ltd, looking to step up research of new technology as it expands across China and explores ventures in other countries in the region.
Other investors in the funding round included CMIG Leasing, a unit of China’s biggest private investment conglomerate China Minsheng Investment Group (CMIG), and South Korean fund manager Simone Investment Managers, Dianrong said.
The Shanghai-based firm would use the funds to automate some of its new branches across China, for research and development and potential acquisitions, Soul Htite, co-chief executive of Dianrong, told Reuters.
Fintech is gaining steam in Iran as the country’s central bank, financial institutions and government agencies are taking steps to make Tehran a regional hub for financial innovation.
Several fintech events have been organized in Iran in recent months, including the Fintech Festival sponsored by Bank Pasargad Iran earlier this year. The bank also held the Second Fintech Trig-Up during the festival wherein 45 experts help startups develop their ideas.
The CBI is planning to launch a new regulatory body specifically for fintech firms. The authority has also been working on a regulatory framework for fintech companies since 2015.
In March, a group of Iranian fintech companies joined hands to form an association representing the industry. Called Fintech A, the organization is set to bring industry players under one roof, mainly to find a solution to their problems and boost innovators’ relations with regulatory bodies.
Online payment services provider ZarinPal, peer-to-peer payment app Bahamta, online invoicing service Hesabit, money transfer service PayPing and crowdfunding platform Mehrabane are among founding members of the association.
Toronto-based Lending Loop, a peer-to-peer lending platform, has raised $2 million in funding from the MaRS Investment Accelerator Fund. The round also saw participation from a group of finance and technology investors.
Lending Loop said the funding will help the company roll out its latest product Auto-Lend, which allows lenders to automatically invest in loans through Lending Loop’s marketplace. The company also plans to invest in machine learning capabilities to assess the risk of borrowers applying for loans.
Flexiti Financial, a provider of point-of-sale (POS) financing and payment technology for retailers, is pleased to announce the closing of an oversubscribed $5M convertible debentures offering. Oversubscription amounts totaled an additional $1.25M of aggregate principal, for a total investment of $6.25M. These funds will allow Flexiti Financial to accelerate its rapid growth and further develop the company’s award-winning POS lending platform technology, which is currently adopted in over 1,500 merchant locations and used by over 10,000 customers across Canada.
Greater China-based Oriente and Express Holdings, Inc. (a subsidiary of JG Summit Holdings, Inc.), through an exclusive partnership, will address the financial exclusion problem of underbanked consumers and MSMEs in the Philippines.
This joint venture is setting up a digital financial services marketplace that will enable Filipinos to tap into credit facilities to bridge their ever-growing needs, whether to pay for tuition, unexpected medical expenses or even finance a small business.
According to the World Bank, close to 90 percent of adult Filipinos are not covered by a credit bureau and many people resort to informal means to borrow money. In addition, according to the Banko Sentral ng Pilipinas, of the 43 percent of the population who save money, only 14 percent of households maintain a deposit account and 68 percent keep their savings in unsecured places.
News Comments Today’s main news: dv01 partners with Upgrade. U.S. lawmakers try to stop sale of Chicago Stock Exchange to Chinese buyers. PayPal hires ex-Amazon exec to head lending. LendingClub expands Opportunity Fund partnership. Revolut raises $66M, adds bitcoin. Yirendai lawsuit dismissed. International RegTech Association launches. Today’s main analysis: 5 reasons fintech consolidation is inevitable. Today’s thought-provoking articles: Real estate investing […]
dv01 partners with Upgrade. AT: “dv01 already has similar partnerships with other online lenders. This partnership is a feather in the cap for Renaud Laplanche, who is making a nice comeback with Upgrade after last year’s fall out.”
U.S. lawmakers try to stop Chinese from buying Chicago Stock Exchange. AT: “I’m curious as to whether the Trump Administration will weigh in on this considering that one of the president’s major talking points on the campaign trail was how the Chinese are beating the U.S. on the business front. If the Chinese do succeed in buying the stock exchange, it would be an interesting rebranding effort to see CHX go from Chicago Stock Exchange to Chinese Stock Exchange, not a far-fetched idea considering the plan to list Chinese companies on the exchange.”
Why PayPal could join the payments buying spree. AT: “If PayPal doesn’t start making plays soon, they could be left in the dust. They need to expand and diversify. Buying up Klarna would be a huge feather in the cap and give the company a foothold in Europe and other parts of the world where hardly anyone knows they exist. As big as PayPal is, it’s disheartening that they haven’t expanded very far internationally.”
International RegTech Association launches in Switzerland. AT: “I can’t think of a better place for an international association of any kind to be than in Switzerland. On another note, I’m glad to see an international association for RegTechs. It will be interesting to see which companies, and which nations, support it the most.”
dv01, the reporting and analytics platform that offers institutional investors transparency and insight into lending markets, today announced a partnership with Upgrade, Inc., the new consumer credit platform, whose founding team is led by Renaud Laplanche.
Under this partnership, all Upgrade investors will initially receive complimentary access to Upgrade data through dv01’s reporting and analytics platform, including use of dv01’s Portfolio Management solution. Investors will have a full suite of visualization tools at their disposal, making it simple to gain a high level portfolio overview or gather answers to complex questions involving loan composition, performance metrics, and credit metrics.
dv01 will also act as loan data agent for Upgrade’s securitizations, providing investors access to its Securitization Explorer, which includes loan level performance and composition details of upcoming deals, as well as reporting and analytics tools for use after a deal closes. Upgrade expects to access the securitization market on a quarterly basis.
Eleven members of Congress asked the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday to stop the sale of the Chicago Stock Exchange to a group led by China-based investors, saying the regulator lacks the ability to monitor the foreign buyers.
The proposal to sell privately owned CHX for an undisclosed amount to a consortium led by Chongqing Casin Enterprise Group (CCEG) has drawn attention because it would be the first time a U.S. exchange has been bought by Chinese investors. There are also U.S. investors in the group.
Casin Group, a privately held company that invests in real estate development and financial holdings, said its long-term goal is to list Chinese companies in the United States through CHX, which has locations in Chicago and New Jersey.
PayPal Holdings Inc. said Tuesday it has hired Mark Britto, a financial-technology entrepreneur and a former executive at Amazon.com Inc., to lead its lending business.
Mr. Britto, 53, joins PayPal from Boku Inc., a company he founded that lets consumers buy goods and services using their mobile phones and pay for them alongside their usual bill from their telecommunications provider. He replaces Steve Allocca, who left PayPal in May to become the president of online lender LendingClub Corp.
The company currently uses cash to fund the $5.1 billion of consumer loans and around $600 million of small business loans it has on its balance sheet.
The unit has bolstered PayPal’s bottom line in recent years: the consumer-credit portion accounts for around 13% of PayPal’s annual operating profit, or roughly $280 million, according to analysts at J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.
Access to credit has long been a challenge for small businesses, often a chicken and egg scenario where owners need capital to grow, but can’t get the loan they need until they’ve grown. And, while access to capital has a key role in fueling economic mobility, job creation and the health of the middle class, traditional banks aren’t meeting small business’ needs, especially as it relates to minority communities and women entrepreneurs.
To help, we’ve expanded our partnership with Opportunity Fund, combining the best of high-tech and nonprofit lending, to provide underserved small businesses the loans they need to flourish. Now, small business owners living in California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Washington will have access to affordable credit.
Already this partnership has helped many entrepreneurs access capital and by 2020 Opportunity Fund plans to invest $400 million in over 10,000 small businesses.
The decision to invest in real estate or stocks doesn’t necessarily have to be either-or and there’s good reason to choose both.
Stocks offer advantages as well with higher liquidity and lower transaction costs. It’s difficult to build a diversified portfolio of property types and regions without several hundred thousand dollars in real estate investments. Not so with stocks where you can invest easily across the major sectors for less than $100 in commissions.
Despite the steep drop in property prices when the bubble burst in 2008, real estate has still outperformed stocks over the last 20 years.
Real estate has benefited from historically low interest rates over the past decade, providing cheap money on highly leveraged properties. Stocks have also benefited from lower rates but not to the extent as property investors.
The downside to REIT investing is that you don’t get the control or tax benefits you get in direct property ownership. I still own several rental properties as well as equity ownership in some real estate crowdfunding deals to benefit from the tax shelter of real estate investing.
PayPal has a strong presence in the U.S. and the U.K., but it’s less well-known in the rest of the world, Ellis notes. Given the fast pace of evolution in the digital-payments industry, “the window is closing rapidly on PayPal’s ability to expand organically into new markets,” she tells Barron’s Next. Rather than build up a user base and merchant base from scratch in new areas, which could take years, PayPal might decide to buy a company that has already done the heavy lifting.
Ellis thinks a European acquisition makes the most sense. She points to a number of attractive candidates in Europe, including payment processors Adyen and Wirecard. PayPal could also buy Klarna or outbid Vantiv for Worldpay. On a practical level, PayPal’s cash is mostly sitting in Europe.
And the company has a good deal of cash: it could have about $10 billion by the end of the year once it sells off its credit receivables business, Ellis notes.
DataRobot today announced a new milestone in AI adoption: since January 2015, customers have run more than 200 million predictive analytics models in the DataRobot Cloud. LendingTree, the online loan marketplace that connects consumers with multiple lenders, banks, and credit partners, achieved this milestone for the company.
Using DataRobot, companies quickly deploy machine learning models to uncover hidden opportunities and predict future outcomes from vast amounts of data. Previously deployed by expensive and elusive data scientists, these sophisticated models have the ability to learn without being explicitly programmed, making them fundamental to big data strategies.
What’s true in real estate is true in fintech—location, location, location is everything. Matt Burton, CEO of Orchard Platform, a technology and data analysis provider for online lending platforms, is living proof of that.
Despite his vision of building an electronic market for loan trading, Burton started Orchard without any network in the financial services space, he said in a fireside chat discussion at the 2017 Benzinga Global Fintech Awards.
Orchard has raised $44.7 million to date, Burton said at the event.
Plug and Play presented Munich Re and Mozeika with one of 10 Corporate Innovation Awards to those it calls its “most engaged partners” in various accelerators that in addition to insurtech include fintech, health and wellness, food and beverage, mobility, new materials and packaging, brand and retail, travel and hospitality, and Internet of Things (IoT).
Some of the insurtechs Munich Re has invested in and/or partnered with include Trov, Lemonade, Root, Next, Slice, Bunker, Bought By Many and Helium.
Roostify, a provider of automated mortgage transaction technology, today announced that Financial Resources Federal Credit Union (FRFCU) has implemented Roostify’s mortgage technology platform in order to create a better online experience for its members applying for or refinancing a home loan.
Financial Resources members are now able to complete their entire mortgage application online, including using a mobile device or tablet. They can upload their financial information directly into the platform and communicate with a loan officer during every step of the process. When they are on the go, they can easily upload and sign documents without a trip to the bank, saving precious time in the closing process.
The data just isn’t there, said Phillip Rosen, CEO and co-founder of Even Financial, an ad tech provider for financial marketers.
On Tuesday, the company added a programmatic marketplace offering to its existing supply-side API to help connect app owners and financial institutions with specific targeting needs.
Rather than paying on a cost-per-click basis, Even Financial’s programmatic marketplace operates on a real-time pricing model that rewards publishers at the top of the funnel when offers are served to pre-approved consumers.
Financial technology (fintech) has felt the impact of Brexit, U.S. politics and a perceived direction towards protectionism, Western Union’s partnerships lead has said.
Christina Hamilton, head of partnerships and international expansion at the global payments and transfers company, said that protectionism and a populist surge against globalization was a serious concern for the fintech industry.
She said that her views should not necessarily be regarded as the views of Western Union, but was clear that her business had been affected.
VirtualAdvisors.com announces the launch of its first artificial intelligence (AI) powered market intelligence campaign.
The Newport Beach FinTech startup wants to scrape all the data on the web to put it into a structured format, with the intent to specifically make it useful to the financial service industry for many different business purposes.
The platform offers free access for family offices as well as retail and institutional investors who can use it as an educational and due diligence tool for various asset classes and specific products.
The market intelligence campaigns will be periodically launched and focus on specific alternative investment niches, starting with 1031 exchanges.
Advisor Group has partnered with Invesco Ltd.’s Jemstep to launch an onboarding, advice and data aggregation platform for both financial advisors and retail investors.
The new platform is expected to offer fintech solutions to challenges commonly faced by independent financial advisors, according to Advisor Group.
They include a paperless process for opening new client accounts, and a web portal where clients can monitor their accounts.
The transferring of client assets to brokerage and advisory accounts will be handled using a paperless, e-signature based process, according to the announcement by Advisor Group and Jemstep. The platform is integrated with Pershing for brokerage accounts and Envestnet for advisory solutions.
I applaud the CFP Board for the proposed new standard for delivering all financial advice under a fiduciary standard. This is clearly a move towards establishing more credibility in the eyes of the public, media and practitioners. It’s also a move towards establishing financial planning as a true profession.
Thomas Mayo (adviser)
I mostly like the new CFP rules as explained on the site. The problem is that I now have too many government and professional groups telling me their view of what is best for my clients…. Sorry, but the odd person out may be the CFP Board. The government agencies carry more oomph! No one in the past 20 years has hired me because of my CFP credentials!… If the DOL Rule is enacted in January 2018 as it is, there is a good chance I will cancel my CFP certification.
Genti Cici (adviser)
I don’t believe [the proposed standards] go far enough. They could even backfire and give false hope that now (with the new standards) ALL CFPs are fiduciaries, at ALL TIMES, which is what I first thought. But if we read carefully at part B, we see that while the standards call for a fiduciary duty, the CFP has room NOT to use the standards.… The CFP can still be paid commissions and not be a fiduciary at certain times. Thus clients will still be confused.
Robert Burns (adviser)
I adamantly protest the proposal. When does it get to be too much bureaucracy? We have FINRA, the SEC, the IRS and the Department of Labor all seeing who can out-regulate whom. It is getting ridiculous …. By your heaping more onto us, you end up increasing the cost of our doing business. Because you all want it make it easy for us to be sued, the cost of our insurance will go up. Let the regulators regulate. You stay out of it. …. Ninety-nine percent of us are good people intent on doing the best possible job for our clients. Now get out of our way!
Cross River announced today the appointment of Ben Isaacson as SVP and General Manager of its Payments Division. With 20 years of experience and a sophisticated understanding of the payments industry, Isaacson will be responsible for managing and growing Cross River’s full suite of payments products and clients.
Isaacson joins Cross River after six years at JPMorgan Chase and , most recently as Product Executive within Treasury Services, where he was responsible for the product development, commercialization and industry development for Real Time Payment services. Prior to this role, Isaacson led the Wholesale Payments Strategy team at JPMorgan Chase, and was responsible for long-term growth initiatives, such as business-to-business payments strategy and FinTech engagement. Before JP Morgan Chase, Isaacson spent seven years at MasterCard in the Strategic Planning and MasterCard Advisors’ Payments Strategy group, focusing on growth strategies and opportunities for MasterCard and its bank clients.
Home Point Financial Corporation (“Home Point”), a national, multi-channel mortgage originator and servicer, today announced that Chad Patton has been named Executive Managing Director-Chief Strategy Officer. In this role, he will focus on funding and capital planning, business intelligence and strategic initiatives.
Mr. Patton has over 20 years of experience in the mortgage and financial industry. Prior to joining Home Point, he served as Executive Vice President at Nationstar Mortgage, overseeing production, capital markets and business development activities. Previously, he was Managing Director at Lone Star Funds, where he oversaw financial services private equity investments, including the formation and growth of Caliber Home Loans.
The “global banking alternative” Revolut has raised $66 million in a fund-raising round, the start-up said on Wednesday, in the latest sign that London is so far weathering Brexit to remain a global financial-technology center.
Led by Europe- and San Francisco-based venture capital fund Index Ventures, the fund-raising round was one of the biggest ever Series B rounds in Europe. It should provide some comfort to the British capitol as it jostles to hold onto its reputation as Europe’s leading hub for the nascent fintech sector.
Revolut also announced that it is adding digital currency bitcoin BTC=BTSP to its app in response to high demand from customers. Users will now be able to hold, exchange, spend and transfer bitcoin the same way they use other currencies. Rival cryptocurrencies Ether and Litecoin will soon be added.
Curve, the London fintech startup that offers a platform that lets you consolidate all your bank cards into a single Curve card and manage your money, is on the verge of closing $10 million in Series A funding.
According to sources, the round, which could be announced as soon as this week, is being led by Connect Ventures, with participation from Santander Ventures, the venture arm of Spain-headquartered bank Santander Group.
Investors are banking providers Santander InnoVentures, Investec, Connect Ventures, Speedinvest, Oxford Capital, Breega Capital, and Samos Investments. Individual investors include: Henry Ritchotte (ex Deutsche Bank COO), Gael de Boissard (ex Credit Suisse board member), Alessandro Hatami (The Pacemakers; ex Lloyds, Paypal, GE Capital), Paul Townsend (Vitesse PSP, Barclays, WorldPay), Emilian Popa (Rocket Internet, Naspers, Groupon), Rohan Haldea (Apax Partners)
Darktrace, a cyber security firm backed by Mike Lynch, the Autonomy founder, has received $75m (£58m) in a funding round that values the company at $825m.
Darktrace, created by mathematicians from the University of Cambridge, claims to use artificial intelligence software that mimics the characteristics of the human immune system to detect and counter cyber threats.
Darktrace’s funding round, which brings it close to the $1bn “unicorn” valuation that represents success to many start-ups, was led by Insight Venture Partners, a New York group that has previously backed Twitter and Alibaba. Its biggest shareholder remains Invoke Capital, which was set up by Mr Lynch after Autonomy was sold to HP for $11.7bn in 2011.
In fact, a study in 2016 by Accenture, the management consultancy, found that just 29% of respondents thought banks were trustworthy. But perhaps instead of trusting banks, people might be willing to place their faith in code instead. Blockchain has been around for some time now but it’s only relatively recently that people have started to speak of it as a sort of truth serum for the way transactions are recorded. If things keep progressing as they are, it could seriously disrupt financial services companies – or perhaps even restore people’s confidence in them.
Many of these innovations were inspired by a frustration with the status quo: Nuggets, a service that allows people to make payments or log in without having their data stored, was born out of founder Alastair Johnson’s discomfort with the way personal information was traditionally being handled by brands.
In fact, Santander has estimated that blockchain could save banks up to $20bn each year in administrative costs. However, it could also herald the start of a peer-to-peer lending regime that’s cheaper and more appealing to consumers.
Green energy businesses are “crying out” for investment, according to P2P lending specialists F&P Sponsors, and are increasingly turning to the alternative financing sector to get the money they need.
Recently, the P2P lending specialists secured funding for BioDynamic UK, which owns and operates an AD plant in Colwick, Nottinghamshire. BioDynamic UK had been rejected 25 times in attempts to win funding, before F&P secured them £1.5 million in just two weeks.
Yirendai (NYSE:YRD), a China based peer to peer lender that is a sister company of CreditEase, has shared that a lawsuit filed against it in 2016 has been completely dismissed. The putative class action lawsuit was brought by multiple law firms pertaining to the decline in the share price. Ostensibly, the legal action was taken in part due to actions by the Chinese government and not Yirendai as the government was in the midst of issuing new rules to regulate the exceptionally large P2P lending industry. Yirendai has facilitated approximately RMB 32.3 billion (USD $ 4.75 billion) in loans from March 2012 through December 31, 2016.
Shares in Yirendai have moved higher on the news. The American Depository Shares (ADS) were priced at $10 per share when they went public in 2015. Today they stand at over $27/share.
Recently, Wang Yongli, the CEO of Letv Financial, confirmed that he has resigned from Letv. When it comes to his next stop, Wang only said he would take a break and hasn’t revealed too much. Wang joined Letv Financial in August 2015, acting as the CEO and vice president of financial service sector. Before that, he had worked in Bank of China (BOC) for over 26 years, and playing the role of vice president for about 10 years.
Since the Letv funding crisis broke out from the end of last year, senior executives from different business sectors of Letv ecosystem left in session, now it spread to financial sector. Now, the parent company Letv Holdings is in trouble again. According to a civil decision made by the court, three companies held by Jia Yueting couple and deposit asset amounted to $182.21million have been applied for a freeze by banks. Under the heavy crisis, how long could Letv finance sustain for is remains to be seen.
This model will increasingly make it difficult for any individual challenger bank to achieve significant scale and to compete effectively with large traditional banks. Burnmark’s primary research also showed that challenger banking users are not fully loyal yet – most will stay with the challenger bank until their customer service expectations are met.
2. Traditional Banks Need to Improve Customer Experience
The most interesting strategies from challenger banks involve targeting the banking needs of traditionally under-served, niche segments like students, freelancers, small businesses, refugees and immigrants.
Challenger banks are proving that there is viable and commercial sense in targeting niche segments that were not traditionally profitable for the big banks.
3. Challenger Banks Lack Product Diversity
Roughly half of challenger banks today offer only basic products like savings and checking/current accounts – and this is a gap that can be successfully filled with collaboration within the space.
The biggest challenge any large banking operation faces today is costs – finding operational efficiency in its decades’ worth of legacy systems and non-strategic investments in outdated IT systems. The biggest desire for a traditional bank in today’s world of heavy fintech competition is to build digital technology from scratch, focusing on openness, transparency, efficiency, low costs and with the ability to future-proof disruption.
5. The Importance of Digital Banking
Both traditional banks and challenger fintech banks are using digital technology as an important component of their operational strategies. Digital technology is used to acquire and retain customers as well as to find cost efficiencies.
One way or the other, most challenger banking start-ups will be in a better competitive position with larger banks as partners, and vice versa. With the number of partnership announcements made around Money2020 Europe, the industry is clearly turning to maturity and scalability through collaboration.
Shine, a company that provides an administrative and financial management platform for freelance workers, raised €2.8 million from Daphni, Kima Ventures, and several business angels in a recent financing round.
Shine offers freelancers a multitasking solution platform that combines online banking with contract and invoice management, streamlining administrative and financial tasks for those who work independently.
The non-profit International RegTech Association (IRTA), incorporated in Switzerland in May, has launched to provide a united community of individuals and organizations, with a shared vision to innovate, advance, and influence the future of Regulatory Technology (Regtech).
The IRTA’s objectives include:
Operate in key markets and economies, internationally
Support the entire Regtech ecosystem
Represent the interests of Regtech providers and consumers globally – including
technology firms, service providers, professional advisers, and financial institutions
Engage and liaises with the most influential financial regulators and academics
Promote the advancement of the Regtech profession, through Regtech research,
innovation initiatives, and standards development
Support Regtech accelerators, and delivers professional education, and certification
Work in collaboration with existing industry Associations, Agencies and other
On one end of the risk spectrum are the risk-taking fintech startups. These fast technology adopters are disrupting traditional financial services and their delivery. Circumventing regulation is part of their cost advantage, but also their weakness. Lacking strong credit and capital adequacy standards, P2P lenders have loaned to terrorists, money launderers and hundreds of fictitious companies. Without deposit insurance, hacked cryptocurrency exchanges have gone out of business, leaving depositors high and dry. More digital disruptions are being introduced. New lending platform SALT is using cryptocurrencies as collateral for loans.
Over 50 percent of bank customers are now asking for similar low-cost online lending (P2P lending), wire transfer (P2P transfers) and investment management (robo-advisor) services.
A recent default on an Alipay-facilitated investment has highlighted the laxer credit standards. Investors who crowdfunded Chinese mobile phone maker Cosun (via Alipay on their mobile phones) face a loss of $45 million following a bond default. AliPay’s rapid expansion through parent Ant Financial into a suite of digital financial services for its 400 million registered users is the model of the future. But the default has raised concerns as China’s consumer e-finance leader integrates its P2P lending, insurance and investments starting at 1 renminbi with global wire transfer stalwart MoneyGram and its 350,000 agencies worldwide.
Even with digital credit information easily accessible, the increase in competition in fintech – China alone has 5,000 peer-2-peer (P2P) lenders — is pushing financial services firms to relax credit rules to compete for customers. Industry leader the Funding Circle has maintained a default rate under 2% on £2.3 billion in loans originated since 2010, averaging 5% returns, but for the broader P2P loan market, default rates are rising .
As a business model, P2P lending is still at a nascent stage in India. According to Tracxn, there are 63 pure-play companies in this domain such as Faircent, Lendbox, Capital Float, Indifi Technologies and i-Lend.
P2P is a simple concept, but its very nature mandates a robust system for assessing the creditworthiness of borrowers. To make that cut, i2i gathers as much information as possible about people looking for loans (yes, it looks at their social media profiles as well), collects all relevant documents and verifies them. Each profile is then automatically analysed and put under one of the three tabs – Accepted, Rejected and On border. Next, its underwriters manually go through the borderline cases and ask for more information to give them a specific status. They also list the strengths and concerns regarding each ‘Accepted’ borrower, taking into account factors such as incomes, liabilities and CIBIL scores. The company receives an average of 4,000 loan applications every month, out of which only 50-60 per cent people complete the entire application process and out of that, only 60-70 applications get accepted, says Singh.
The start-up has also initiated a ‘One loan, One Interest’ policy for every risk category.
The company currently makes money from the fees paid by its registered users. While investors pay a one-time registration fee of `500, potential borrowers just need to pay `100. Additionally, an investor has to pay a service fee, which is 1 per cent of the total amount invested on the platform. Again, based on the risk profile, a borrower has to make an upfront payment of 3-6 per cent of the loan.
Furthermore, the East Africa region has the largest market share of the African alternative finance market. In 2015, East Africa accounted for 41% of total African market share, while West Africa accounted for 24% and Southern Africa accounted for 19%.
But the news that fixed income manager Kilgour Williams Capital has, after about two years of due diligence, launched a credit fund that will buy high interest consumer loans from U.S. fintech companies funded with capital from Canadian high net worth and institutional investors, is significant for other reasons as well.
And for KiWi Credit Fund — which has nothing to do with fruits or birds — the concept makes enough sense that a well known asset manager has anted up $30 million to become the lead investor.
But to our knowledge we are the first Canadian-managed fund to invest in this space,” said Colin Kilgour, a founder at Kilgour Williams, a firm best known for managing the program put in place after the $30 billion asset-backed commercial paper froze a few years back.
News Comments Today’s main news: Lending Club CTO resigns. Higher financing cost expected to be pushed to the borrower. Zopa lifts investment limits. Nigeria fintech startup Paystack raises $1.3M in seed money. Today’s main analysis: Novel underwriting criteria by SoFi in RMBS leads to a strong rating. Statistics of lending between friends and in families. Today’s thought-provoking articles: The rise […]
The rise of insurtech in the age of algorithms. GP:” I also agree that insurtech is the next frontier for fintech.” AT: “This is probably understated. Insurtech will be the next big splash in FinTech and likely will go on to be bigger than mobile payments.”
Zopa lifts investment limits. GP:” I didn’t expect this to last long. It did get Zopa some nice press. And I am glad it didnt’ last long. If it had lasted too long it would have been a bad sign.”AT: “That didn’t last long.”
25% fall out with friends over loans. GP:” Very interesting statistic : 1/4 or so of friends have a fall out over money. And 3/4 of UK people polled lent money in the last 12 months and 4% lent more then 5,000 GBP. Inside friends and family loans estimated to 2.9bil GBP per year.”
PeerIQ Weekly Industry Update (PeerIQ Email), Rated: AAA
In a widely expected move, FOMC officials increased the Fed Funds rate by 25 bps to a target range of between 50 and 75 bps. Higher financing costs on warehouse lines will reduce net interest margins for whole loan investors unless there is a commensurate rate increase for borrowers. Platforms are expected to pass on some or all of the increase in borrowing costs to consumers to demonstrate the resiliency of the business model to small changes in interest rates.
Much like the beginning of 2016, Fed officials expect several rate increases in the new year as the economy approaches full employment. However, we note that over the life of the current expansion officials have consistently over-estimated the pace of GDP growth and inflation and therefore the pace of rate increases has been slower than expectations.
We highlight two important benefits from issuer’s perspective for QM designation. Issuers are 1) insulated from claims and defenses by borrowers due to safe harbor, and 2) are not required to retain 5% of capital structure per the credit risk retention rule. Nevertheless, SoFi intends to retain risk in the transaction.
Collateral Quality of SFPMT 2016-1 is One of the Strongest in 2016
Unlike traditional RMBS underwriters, SoFi incorporates additional criteria such as Free Cash Flow (FCF) and Real Excess Cash Flow (REC) into its underwriting process. REC measures a minimum residual income after payment of housing expenses, taxes, debt obligations, and estimated discretionary and cost of living expenses based on the borrower’s location. SoFi assesses the borrowers’ liquidity position to ensure that they have consistent cash excess including their mortgage payments.
Besides this novel underwriting criteria, SFPMT 2016-1 also has a number of strong collateral characteristics that mitigates potential credit risk. For instance, its collateral pool has one of the lowest weighted average loan-to-value (LTV) and debt-to-income (DTI) ratios amongst recent prime jumbo deals.
Fed Fund Rate Hike led to Wider Pricing for SFPMT 2016-1
The Federal Reserve on Wednesday sent its key short-term interest rate up by a quarter of a percentage point. FNMA 30yr conventional loan pool with 3.0% coupon trades around at 3.3% yield today vs 2.6% yield a month ago. Due to the recent interest rate hike and other factors, SFPMT 2016-1 was priced wider than other recent comparable transactions. For instance, the Sequoia deal SEMT 2016-3 was priced over 100 basis points tighter over a month ago due to changes in the rate environment and other factors.
Many banks were quick to announce an increase in their prime lending rates, and while we expect that some online lenders will follow suit, as of this writing we have not seen similar announcements. While 2016 has been a turbulent yearfor some online lenders, we expect the acceleration in positive deals and increased interest from traditional lenders looking to participate in the space will continue into 2017.
It may take time and regulatory easing for depositories to emulate organizations like SoFi in transitioning to a “FICO-free” credit scoring model, but there is definite merit in leveraging alternative models to tap into a significantly underserved (yet creditworthy) segment of the population. Developing an alternative credit score or leveraging existing models enables a lender to penetrate this overlooked market and gain new consumers at a time of increased competition and reduced profit margins.
An Experian study estimated that 64 million consumers in the United States do not have a FICO credit score. Further, Vantagescore assessed 10 million of these so-called “unscoreable” consumers as prime or near-prime consumers, while another significant percentage have steady jobs and/or low liability levels. Clearly, there is a need to determine creditworthiness outside of the traditional models.
The traditional underwriting process can also be enhanced by leveraging nonconventional variables such as credit card transactions, social media presence and utility bills. This can potentially reduce credit risk through expanded risk modeling and monitoring. Lenders should consider back testing alternative scoring models as a challenger to compare against the FICO model in a champion-challenger sandbox environment.
Alternative credit scoring presents tremendous opportunities, but it is not without risks and challenges.
As in banking, peer-to-peer is hot in insurance with older players like Friendsurance and also newcomers such as Lemonade, InsPeer, InSured, and Teambrella. Each promises insurance that is more transparent and social with shared costs – things that have wide appeal in today’s market where customization is king.
Another interesting area in insurtech is item-specific, event-specific, and on-demand coverage – “smart insurance.” Startups in this space collect data about a customer’s possessions and provide machine-learning enhanced risk pricing for single-item coverage of any duration. This model allows premium levels to scale down to pennies with durations down to the second for completely customized coverage.
Of course, even when insurance companies partner with IoT manufacturers, the question still remains: who owns the customer relationship? For complete control of the customer experience and customer proximity, it’s essential that today’s insurance companies embrace the age of algorithms and better leverage IoT technology and big data to drive innovation.
Insurance can’t continue to simply partner with IoT manufacturers for long – they have to lead the movement. This means appropriating the very tools giving their new competitors an advantage in both IoT and non-IoT spheres: big data and algorithms. By leveraging IoT technology to gather more data about customers’ homes, cars, and even the people themselves, insurance companies can then better use real-time data, predictive modeling, and machine learning to create new business models and new offerings for clients.
Current startups in the space are proving that the age of algorithms is a positive development for the insurance business itself and for its customers, who are looking for more options, flexibility, and transparency, all of which IoT and big data analysis can offer.
Fitch shared last week its intent to rate SoFi’s RMBS transaction that included 270 loans with a total balance of approximately $168.79 million. The group of loans consists of prime fixed-rate mortgages originated on the SoFi online lending platform.
Fidelity Investments unintentionally boosted BlackRock Inc’s prospects as a robo adviser with a small investment in a start-up company that BlackRock bought last year for an estimated $150 million.
BlackRock and Fidelity are only in the early stages of what is shaping up as a battle royale to become the go-to provider of cheap automated financial advice over the Internet.
Although rivals currently dominate the robo advising space, investment behemoths Fidelity and BlackRock are expected to grow quickly. BlackRock’s FutureAdvisor now has more than $1 billion in assets under management, while Boston-based Fidelity’s digital wealth manager, Fidelity Go, is still getting off the ground, with only a nominal amount of assets. Fidelity has yet to launch a full marketing campaign.
Still, Fidelity could overtake BlackRock next year because it has a built-in advantage that many rivals, including BlackRock, do not have: an online brokerage with 17.4 million retail accounts. Some 96 percent of those accounts don’t currently have any sort of management and Fidelity is ideally placed to woo them over to Fidelity Go.
Meanwhile, the U.S. robo industry’s early leader is Vanguard Group. Its robo business has 60-percent market share with $41 billion in assets. Charles Schwab Corp, which has 7 million fewer brokerage accounts than Fidelity, is No. 2 with $10.2 billion in assets after only 19 months since launching its robo product. Click here for a list of the top U.S. robo advisers: (tmsnrt.rs/2hy0z4S).
Lending Club (NYSE:LC) filed an 8K yesterday indicating that Chief Technology Officer John MacIlwaine had submitted his resignation on December 15th. MacIlwaine decided to depart from Lending Club to pursue another opportunity. Lending Club stated that Richard Southwick, Senior Vice President for Technology, will oversee the Company’s technology development and operations while they conduct a search for a new Chief Technology Officer.
As a result, these new lenders can – and often do – charge sky-high interest rates and pile on fees, often hidden from the borrower. A short-term loan can turn into a long-term nightmare.Some problems identified in the Harvard Business School report:
High costs. Lenders commonly charge APRs (annual percentage rates) above 50 percent and can easily reach over 300 percent.
Double dipping. Repeat borrowers incur additional fees each time they renew their loans.
Hidden prepayment charges. Unlike traditional loans, many alternative lenders require payment of the full interest even when loans are repaid early.
Misaligned broker incentives. Small-business loan brokers often recommend the most expensive loans because they earn the highest fees on those.
Stacking. Multiple lenders provide loans to the same borrower, resulting in additional and hidden fees.
What the Harvard Business School Report recommends:
Mandatory disclosure of APRs, fees, default rates and borrower satisfaction.
A national regulation option – rather than state-by-state.
Increased borrower protections for small-business owners.
Rules/guidance on partnerships between banks and new lenders.
Brokers/platforms to have a “fiduciary” duty toward borrowers, meaning they must act in the borrowers’ best interests and disclose conflicts of interest.
Less than a week after LendingTree launched its $50,000 small business grant contest; Bizfi announced it has teamed up with the online lender for the contest. According to Bizfi, LendingTree is one of the 45 funding partners of its marketplace for small business finance.
The research report published by Transparency Market Research states that the opportunity in the global P2P lending market was worth US$26.16 bn in 2015. Analysts predict that the market valuation will reach US$897.85 bn by 2024, as it expands at a significant CAGR of 48.2% from 2016 to 2024.
The reducing interest in conventional banking, increasing dependency on online platforms, and recent history of financial crisis in this region has prompted P2P lending market to take lead cater to the unmet financial demands of the population. Meanwhile, the P2P lending market is estimated to show rapid progress in Asia Pacific. The emerging economies of China, India, Japan, and Australia will make a significant contribution to the rise of this market in Asia Pacific. The primary growth driver for this region will also be small businesses that will seek financial alternatives to fund their projects.
Earlier this week, fintech firm Even Financial announced it increased loan originations by 205% quarter over quarter since the beginning of 2016 and surpassed $1.5 billion in loan requests. The company has experienced solid growth since it was founded in 2014.
Crowdfund Insider: What borrower categories are you seeing the most interest on EVEN?
Rosen:Aside from debt consolidation which is the top purpose across the industry, we see high demand in weddings, auto and home improvement
Crowdfund Insider: What is the average size loan requested?
Before we start, a few guidelines would be to stay away from any model that offers ridiculous interest rates like 1% per day or 10% per month. The same can be said for any model that is not transparent on how they get this interest or that simply state that profits comes from trading. Finally, do your research. A simple google search can make the difference.
Bibond is a peer-to-peer lending website that allows you to lend both Bitcoin and national currencies for an interest. The major difference between the two former websites (Poloniex and Magnr) and Bibond is that with Bibond you’ll be lending your funds directly to other users. There is no failsafe mechanism for stopping users from taking your money and leaving. Forever.
However, this isn’t the norm as users are required to reveal their personal information and to back it up with the ownership of social media accounts, ebay, and so on. The borrowers are ranked from A to F according to risk. The lower the risk, the lower the interest you’ll receive and vice-versa.
In the case of an unpaid loan, Bibond will provide you with all the necessary information to take legal action agains the borrower or Bibond will sell the claim for the loan to a debt collection agency. The latter is usually better for lenders but it requires the amount to be above a certain threshold which varies according to the location of the borrower (usually 1.0 BTC or more in the developed world and 0.5 BTC or more in emerging markets).
For non-accredited investors looking for other options to invest for social impact, Hoyt mentions Kiva.org, which offers peer-to-peer lending through zero-interest notes and CuttingEdgeX, a clearinghouse listing direct public offerings for social enterprises needing to raise capital.
Zopa, the original peer-to-peer lending platform, has lifted its recently enforced platform limit. The firm is once again accepting new money transfers, with £4.2m in capacity.
Although the investment limit has been temporarily lifted, Zopa’s usual run-rate would suggest that the £4.2m of space will be filled within a few short days. Zopa has lent out £56.9m during the past four weeks.
Growth Street announced last week it would not accept individual retail investors on its peer to peer lending platform. They may do this now as they are an FCA registered Appointed Representative pursuant to a partnership with another firm.
Crowdfund Insider: What makes Growth Street stand out from other peer-to-peer lending platforms?
Sherwin-Smith: Growth Street is the only P2P platform offering revolving credit, which we provide in the form of secured business overdrafts. Borrowers share their performance data with Growth Street on an ongoing basis.
Younited Credit is one of the biggest fintech start-ups in France, operating peer-to-peer lending platform recognized by the French central bank.
Lendix is an online marketplace for business loans, allowing investors to advance money directly to SMEs. Ulule is a leading crowdfunding site created by Thomas Boucherot and Alexander in 2010. Since its launch, the company has funded thousands of projects in many fields, from music creation to audiovisual.
Founded by Ombline Lasseur, Adrien Aumont and Vincent Ricordeau in 2009, Kisskissbankbank provides a crowdfunding platform for athletes, humanists, and creatives to raise funds for their projects.
Created in 2012, SmartAngels is a crowdfunding platform that allows retail investors and professionals to fund start-ups and SMEs.
Founded in 2007, MyMajorCompany allows music fans and internet users to invest in their preferred artists’ projects.
Ledger is a start-up that combines its strong expertise in smart card, cryptography, security, and embedded hardware. The launch of a hardware wallet, Ledger Nano, in over 80 countries established the company as a reference in the global bitcoin ecosystem.
Founded in 2011, Paymium is a European web-based exchange that allows all bitcoin transactions between traders and consumers.
Founded in 2012 by Camille Tyan and Antoine Grimaud, PayPlug is the first service in France to allow small merchants and professionals to accept credit card payments with simple tools, no monthly costs, and signup fee.
Fundovino is the first crowdfunding platform devoted to the world of wine.
Weeleo is a P2P platform that enables the exchange of cash currencies.
REST Industry Super today became the first Australian super fund to provide its 1.9 million members with ‘mobile first’ access to personalised financial advice with the launch of the REST Advice Online platform.
REST Advice Online is delivered on Midwinter’s next generation Advice Operating System (AdviceOS) and provides REST members with the ability to receive instant financial advice and make immediate changes to their super account from any mobile device.
The digital advice offering leverages Midwinter’s Digital Advice technology which means that regardless of which method REST members choose to receive advice (phone based, web chat or self-service), it is delivered, recorded and processed from the same integrated advice system.
The financial services industry is also undergoing transformation with digital. Crowdfunding startups like Ketto and Wishberry and peer-to-peer lending platforms like Faircent, Lendbox and i2ifunding are offering platforms to connect people who have a cause or a financial need with those who have excess funds to lend.
Vietnamese P2P lending startup Tima has closed a US dollar 7-figure series A funding from a Singapore fund to accelerate service growth in the local market, a senior executive of the company told this portal.
Launched in 2015, the platform has seen cumulative money from its lender partners reach over VND2.5 trillion ($115.45 million).
About 80 per cent of loan seekers based in Vietnam do not have prompt access to financial services, says a World Bank report. P2P lending, still a fledging business in the country, is said to be a solution in addressing this gap.
In Vietnam, fintech has started to emerge as one of the most favourite verticals for startups and investors, fueled by the increasing mobility yet unbanked population in the country.
Paystack, one of Nigeria’s most hotly anticipated tech start-ups, has just secured $1.3M Seed investment from both international and homegrown investors. The company, founded by Shola Akinlade and Ezra Olubi, initially caught the eye of industry commentators as it was one the first Nigerian tech company to be accepted into the world-famous Y Combinator progam, based in Silicon Valley. Since then, having taken Paystack through Private beta, and securing $120,000 early-stage investment from Y Combinator, Akinlade [CEO] and Olubi [CTO] have quietly been building the company, working to secure this Seed investment round, whilst also building a network of partner merchants in Nigeria, over 1,500, who are now using the platform to accept online payments.
A leading mobile payments company, iZettle offers small businesses portable point-of-sale solutions as well as free sales overview tools. This allows any individual or merchant to take card payments anywhere, anytime.
Another player in this space is Klarna, a Swedish e-commerce company that supplies payment services for online storefronts. The Klarna system eliminates the risks for buyers and sellers by taking over stores’ payment claims and by managing customer payments.
Consumer to business payment fintech is increasingly well established. But some fintech firms are looking to facilitate business to employee payment services.
Doreming, for instance, focuses on financial inclusion for workers, an emerging theme for fintech firms, with the World Bank estimating that 2.5 billion adults worldwide are excluded from traditional banking services.
Adyen is a multichannel payment company outsourcing financial transfer services to international merchants giving them a single solution to accept payments anywhere in the world.
Azimo is also an international money transfer service harbouring a large digital network that allows customers to send money to over 190 countries, from any internet-connected device.
Microfinance fintechs are riding a wave of popularity with their social media partners and increasingly facilitating the online sharing community. For example, Flattr, a fintech founded in 2010, enables users to ‘flattr’ creators for their digital content by clicking the Flattr-button next to their content. Each month, you add money to your account and at the end of the month your monthly budget is divided between all the things you flattered and sent to the creators.
News Comments Today’s main news: SoFi’s student loan refis serve as models for super prime jumbo mortgages. LendInvest launches first auction finance product. Today’s main analysis: If it walks like a bank and quacks like a bank, it’s a bank. Share buybacks continue at P2P Global Investments. Today’s thought-provoking articles: FCA bashes CFDs, yet invests in P2P. China’s […]
SoFi models for the mortgage industry. GP: ” SoFi has had the cheapest originations for its student loan securitization. With this AAA CMBS securitization we expect they will likely have once again very cheap capital. Cheap capital validates their underwriting quality and overall their company quality. I would suggest that SoFi is now the model to follow instead of Lending Club, at least for now.”
LendInvest launches first auction finance product. GP:” LendInvest has been at the tip of the innovation, growth and online lending space. I am not surprised they continue innovating. Combined with their growth and their executive team recent hires, I would expect they are probably eyeing an IPO in the year or two.” AT: “If this goes over big, I predict copycats.”
FCA bashes CFDs but invests in P2P – what gives? GP:” There is a huge different in CFDs (like FX spot) vs P2P. CFDs , nearly always, see investors losing money. P2P , nearly never sees investors losing money. How do I know this ? I run one of the main companies helping FX Spot and CFD brokers setup from tech, liquidity , legal and everything else. It was called Boston Technologies. ” AT: “I must admit, this does seem to be a double standard.”
Expend to raise 750,000BP on Crowdcube. AT: “I find it ironic that FinTech companies are using crowdfunding sites to raise capital. Last week, it was Sharestates on SeedInvest. On the one hand, I understand that they are companies like any other and need operating capital. On the other hand, it could lead to a perception of robbing Peter to pay Paul, like a bank taking out a loan to pay off loans. Whether true or not, a perception could lead to detrimental effects in the market. I’m not sure this is a trend we want to see developing.”
SoFi Lending Corp.’s securitization of its student loan refis for high net worth individuals is now a model for its recent expansion into super prime jumbo mortgages.
SoFi has launched a $169.8 million bond issuance backed by 270 super-sized mortgages that SoFi has originated primarily to wealthy homeowners in California.
SoFi Mortgage Trust Series 2016-1 will issue four classes of super senior notes, and two tranches of supportive senior notes, secured by 15- and 30-year fixed rate home loans that the San Francisco-based lender began underwriting in late 2014.
The senior notes have preliminary AAA ratings from Fitch Ratings, DBRS and Kroll Bond Rating Agency.
The OCC recognizes that the demographics of the financial marketplace also are changing with 85 million millennials becoming consumers of financial services—a demographic that has come of age using and relying on technology. As the Whitepaper notes, these market forces have resulted in technology-driven nonbank companies seeking new ways to deliver financial products and services. While frequently viewed as competition to traditional banks, given the challenges of bank regulation, technology companies frequently consider whether to become banks themselves. The Fintech Bank Charter may be a vehicle to do so. Whether the Fintech Bank Charter would carry with it all of the obligations of being a full-service bank, including the application for and receipt of FDIC insurance, and the significant regulation of bank holding companies under the Bank Holding Company Act (“BHCA”)remains uncertain. To be clear, and we think this thought has been lost by some commentators on the Whitepaper, this entity will be a bank and will be regulated as a bank with all of the requisite burdens and obligations of being a bank.
The Whitepaper is significant for its reaffirmation that the OCC has the authority to grant special purpose charters for national banks and federal savings associations under the National Bank Act and the Home Owners’ Loan Act (“HOLA”), respectively. Existing OCC regulations define a “special purpose national bank” as a bank that conducts activities other than fiduciary activities that engages in at least one of the following three core banking functions: receiving deposits; paying checks; or lending money.
While the OCC would be the primary prudential regulator and supervisor of a special purpose national bank, depending on the structure of the bank and the activities it conducts, other federal regulators may have oversight roles over its ownership structure and/or the operations of the bank.
The chartering process for a Fintech Bank would be the same as for a full-service national bank, applying supervisory standards involving safety and soundness, as well as requirements to provide fair access to financial services, treat customers fairly, and comply with all applicable laws and regulations. The OCC traditionally tailors these standards based on a bank’s size, complexity, and risk profile.
A special purpose national bank clearly will benefit:
Fintech companies seeking to operate under one national license rather than on a state-by-state regime (e.g., lenders, mortgage lenders, mortgage services, and money transmitters);
Nonbank lenders, mortgage originators, and servicers with less than $10 billion in assets, which can avoid CFPB supervision;
Payment processors or prepaid card program managers, which can control their own operations without being subjugated to a bank partner; and
Full service banks, which no longer will have to compete with nonbank Fintech companies, which they perceive are operating on an uneven playing field, as the laws and regulations applicable to all banks will apply to Fintech Banks.
TMR findings suggest that the opportunity in the global peer-to-peer market will be worth US$897.85 bn by 2024 from US$26.16 bn in 2015. The market is anticipated to rise at a whopping CAGR of 48.2% between 2016 and 2024. The biggest contributor to this growth will be small business end user segment that was likely to pace ahead at an impressive CAGR of 48.8% during the forecast period, very much retaining its leading stance.
The key trend likely to be adopted by leading players in the global peer-to-peer (P2P) lending market is to build strategic alliances to expand its small business loan divisions. For instance, Prosper Marketplace, Inc. joined hands with OnDeck and bought American Healthcare to improve its product portfolio. Similarly, LendingClub Corporation is also targeting startups by collaborating with trustworthy investors in the market.
On Tuesday, Biz2Credit released its latest small business lending index, which reportedly revealed that loan approval rates at big banks and institutional lenders continued their recent surge and improved to new highs last month (November 2016).
According to the report, small business loan approval rates at big banks improved to 23.7% during the month of November, which was up by two-tenths of a percent from October 2016. This marked the eighth time in the past nine months that lending approval rates increased at big banks. In addition to the increase, approval percentages at small banks improved 48.8%, up one-tenth of a percent from October.
BlueVine, a leading online provider of everyday financing to small businesses, announced today it has closed $49 million in funding. The Series D funding round was led by existing investors, including Lightspeed Venture Partners, Menlo Ventures, 83North, Citi Ventures, Rakuten FinTech Fund and Silicon Valley Bank.
Since launching in March 2014, BlueVine’s cloud-based financing solutions have helped thousands of small businesses obtain quick, easy access to the funds they need to purchase inventory, cover expenses and expand operations.
This financing will support BlueVine’s rapid growth as it expands its team and range of offerings. BlueVine has already funded more than $200 million in working capital for SMBs and is on track to fund more than $500 million in working capital during 2017.
BlueVine also announced it has once again increased its maximum credit lines based on client demand:
For invoice factoring the maximum credit limit has been increased from $250,000 to $2,000,000
For the business line of credit the maximum credit limit has been increased from $50,000 to $100,000
On Tuesday, fintech firm Even Financialannounced it increased loan originations by 205% quarter over quarter since the beginning of 2016. The company reported that, with more than $1.5 billion in loan requests, its platform has grown to serve over one million customers with its proprietary API and a broad network of consumer portal partners, backed by leading analytics and funnel optimization designed specifically for online finance.
More innovation in financial technology, though it could be the most regulation-prone sector
Many companies are working on elegant solutions to provide financing at point-of-sale that is either less expensive than today’s credit cards and/or available to consumers who may not qualify for credit cards. Loans will finally join the ranks of products and services available on demand.
Much of the fintech legislation to date has begun in the House or the Senate; the choices made at the bottom of the ballot are just as important as the one at the top, and investors and startups should remain hyper-aware of regulatory shifts.
Money center banks take the next step in 2017. We’ll see a handful of notable fintech acquisitions, but these companies will strive to continue to operate like startups, and will pay top dollar, in order to retain and attract top talent.
The largest closed-ended portfolio offering exposure to the P2P/marketplace lending space P2P Global Investments has entered into another round of share buy-backs in the past three weeks, according to regulatory filings.
In the past two months, the fund has engaged in share buybacks on 14 separate days, with tranches of buybacks ranging from 3,400 to 50,000 in a single day, the latter has occurred on four separate occasions.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in Britain finds itself at a crossroads in terms of priorities once again today, as barely a week has passed since the national financial markets regulator released a set of proposed rulings which seek to limit the method by which contracts for difference (CFDs) are provided by large, publicly listed, well capitalized and very stable OTC electronic trading firms, yet allows other unregulated and potentially problematic businesses to flourish.
Today, just one week later, the FCA finds itself in a difficult position as the peer to peer lending industry – a particular sector which the FCA only recently deemed worthy of concerns around the growing complexity of the peer-to-peer market – has been the subject of an £85 million taxpayer funded round of investment.
Falling transparency and rising complexity among peer-to-peer lenders is a theme throughout the FCA’s 48-page report. The FCA writes at one point: “Firms’ desire to maintain confidence in platforms has occasionally led to firms acting in a nontransparent manner, masking true loan performance and exposing investors to risks.”
Currently, the UK is the leading market in Europe, accounting for about 85 percent of the European market. In the next few years, P2P sector will grow fast, forcing some banks to change their ways.
According to Research and Markets, by 2018 P2P lending in the UK might be worth more than £5 billion.
In a new report, BI Intelligence predicts that UK P2P lending will grow at a 45 percent five-year compound annual growth rate, to reach $23 billion by 2020. The report also forecasts consumer, property, and business P2P lending volume in the UK, factors driving the growth, and how some unique features of the market are helping the country develop its P2P lending industry.
He acknowledged that financial services technology, or fintech, is ripe for investment in the industry by big companies, as well as by the private equity and venture capital industry. Peer-to-peer lending, crowdfunding, robo-advice and digital currencies were among the emerging fintech industries the PM name-checked in the speech.
Turnbull told the audience that working in the “fintech hub” of Sydney meant that they were in “one of the most exciting industries in the most exciting region” in the world.
China’s major banks are seemingly taking a “wait-and-see” approach to being future custodians for the nation’s growing number of peer-to-peer (P2P) lending firms, whose reputation has been hit hard by a series of high-profile fraud cases.
By law, all P2P platforms now need to have the backing of a registered bank by August 2017, after being given effectively a 12-month grace period to meet the mandatory requirement.
So far, however, the country’s so-called “Big-Four” state-owned banks are yet to act as custodian to any P2P platforms, with only smaller lenders – mostly city commercial banks – dominating the segment.
For many individuals, P2P lending is an alternate source of securing finance. However, at present, it is an unregulated sector. There are lines of reasoning in favour of as well as against regulating P2P lending. The jury is still out on whether and how the RBI should oversee this sector.
Those who don’t favour the RBI issuing guidelines often ask a question — why do we need a regulatory framework for P2P lending marketplaces? Arguably, the sector is in a nascent stage of development and poses no systemic risks. P2P lending is not perceived to have any significant impact on monetary policy transmission mechanism either. Further, it is often said that regulations may limit the progress of this innovative, efficient, and accessible avenue of alternate finance.
The RBI had released a consultation paper on P2P lending in April 2016 and had also welcomed feedback and suggestions.
The scope of regulations…
Prudential regulations on capital
Business continuity plan (BCP) and customer interface
Serious buyers always prefer to enter a sector that is regulated.
Strict regulations = greater accountability = higher transparency = big growth opportunities for serious players