- Today’s main news: Tala raises $65M for international expansion. The House Crowd hits 1M GBP in one day. Silicon Valley investment into UK hits $1B. 100Credit gets $159M from state-owned fund in China. Mintos adds ID Finance loans issued in Kazakhstan.
- Today’s main analysis: The 5 best personal loans for good credit.
- Today’s thought-provoking articles: LendIt Fintech 2018 wrap-up. P2P lending to pass 9B GBP in UK. The 5 best personal loans for good credit. Goldman has big plans for Marcus.
- Tala raises $65 million for international expansion. AT: “The alternative lending battle in major markets seems to be dry at the moment, but there is plenty of battleground around the globe, especially where financial inclusion is a hot grove.”
- LendIt Fintech 2018 wrap-up. AT: “If you didn’t get to attend the conference, this is a good overview of the most important keynotes and talks by industry leaders.”
- 5 best personal loans for good credit. AT: “The first of several good reads from Student Loan Hero today. Geared toward consumers, there are some worthwhile competitive intelligence takeaways, as well.”
- Best options for getting a personal loan with a cosigner. AT: “Perhaps something not often talked or thought about. If a consumer needs a cosigner for a personal loan, where do they go? These alternative lenders can help.”
- Avant or LendUp? AT: “Pros and cons of each.”
- Wunder Capital raises $112M for commercial solar growth. AT: “Niche lending is making huge strides.”
- 9 ways to invest in real estate without buying property.
- Goldman has big plans for Marcus and retail banking. AT: “In Europe, digital banking is cathing on and picking up speed, not so much in the U.S. Marcus has the potential to change that.”
- Goldman Sachs’ new lending business to subprime consumers. AT: “Another good read on Marcus.”
- GreenSky personal loans review.
- What you should know about real estate crowdfunding.
- 48 million psychometric records leaked.
- Point initiates forward flow purchase program with Atalaya.
- StreetShares appoints new chief product & technology officer.
- Millennium Trust wins Professional Services Company of the Year award.
- Capsilon expands digital mortgage platform.
- The House Crowd hits 1M GBP in one day. AT: “Congratulations. A great achievement.”
- Silicon Valley investment in UK hits $1 billion.
- P2p lending to pass 9B GBP.
- Transferwise is first non-bank to join Bank of England payments system.
- Alt funding for SMEs.
- Crowd2Fund to enter Australia.
- Mechanics Cooperative Bank uses Finastra for core banking.
- CreditEase wins major LendIt Fintech 2018 awards.
- 100Credit gets $159M from state-owned fund.
- Alipay pilots digitized national ID cards
- Orange Bank challenges the old banking guard.
- Tink opens floodgates to 300 banks’ data.
- The crowdfunding trend.
- GDPR and financial advice.
- United States
- Fintech lender raises $ 65M to expand in developing nations (American Banker) Rated: AAA
- Wrap-Up of LendIt Fintech USA 2018 (Lend Academy) Rated: AAA
- The 5 Best Personal Loans for Good Credit (Student Loan Hero) Rated: AAA
- Your Best Options If You Need a Personal Loan With a Cosigner (Student Loan Hero) Rated: A
- Avant vs. LendUp: Which Is Right for You? (Student Loan Hero) Rated: A
- Wunder Capital Raises $ 112 Million in Financing To Fuel Commercial Solar Growth in the U.S. (Crowdfunder Insider) Rated: A
- 9 Ways To Invest In Real Estate Without Buying Property (Forbes) Rated: A
- Goldman Sachs Has Big Plans for Marcus and the Future of Retail Banking (Crowdfund Insider) Rated: AAA
- Goldman Sachs’ hot new business is lending to subprime consumers, and Wall Street’s starting to ask questions (Business Insider) Rated: B
- GreenSky Personal Loans Review: Low-Interest Loans for Home Improvement (Student Loan Hero) Rated: A
- Real estate crowdfunding: What you need to know (Bankless Times) Rated: A
- 48 Million Detailed Psychometric Records on Individuals Leaked (InfoSecurity Magazine) Rated: B
- Point Initiates Forward Flow Purchase Program with Atalaya: Unlocking Home Equity Wealth (Crowdfund Insider) Rated: B
- StreetShares Appoints Mohan A. Rao New Chief Product & Technology Officer (Crowdfund Insider) Rated: B
- Millennium Trust Recognized as “Professional Services Company of the Year” at LendIt Fintech USA 2018 (PR Newswire) Rated: B
- Capsilon Expands Digital Mortgage Platform, Automating up to 80% of Manual Data Auditing & Processing Across Back Office (Capsilon) Rated: B
- United Kingdom
- Crowdfunding platform hits £1 million in a day (Growth Business) Rated: AAA
- Silicon Valley investment into the UK breaks $ 1BN for the first time (Information Age) Rated: AAA
- P2P lending set to pass £9bn milestone (Peer2Peer Finance) Rated: AAA
- Transferwise becomes first non-bank to join BoE payments system (AltFi News) Rated: A
- Alternative funding for SMEs demystified (Business Matters) Rated: A
- Crowd2Fund prepares to cross fintech bridge to Australia (Finextra) Rated: B
- Mechanics Cooperative Bank chooses Finastra for core banking system (Real Wire) Rated: B
- CreditEase Wins Major Awards at LendIt Fintech USA 2018 (PR Newswire) Rated: AAA
- Fintech Start-up 100Credit Gets $ 159M From State-owned China Reform Fund (China Money Network) Rated: AAA
- Softbank leads $ 25m Modalku round, while 500 Startups backs HelloGold (TechinAsia) Rated: B
- European Union
- Orange’s entry into digital banking forces old guard to react (Financial Times) Rated: AAA
- Swedish startup Tink just smashed open the floodgates to 300 banks’ data – and it’s a game-changer for Nordic fintech (Business Insider Nordic) Rated: A
- The Crowdfunding Trend – Threat or Opportunity? (Eureka) Rated: A
- GDPR and financial advice: Special categories of personal data (Professional Adviser) Rated: A
- Mintos Marketplace Adds ID Finance Loans Issued in Kazakhstan (Crowdfund Insider) Rated: AAA
- Mo money, mo cash (Financial Times) Rated: AAA
- US-based fintech firm announces its expansion in India’s lending space (Medianama) Rated: AAA
- Singapore Fintech Association established Marketplace Lending Committee (Finextra) Rated: AAA
- Revolut empire-builder seeking to tame “the Asian dragon” (AltFi News) Rated: A
Fintech lender raises $ 65M to expand in developing nations (American Banker) Rated: AAA
A U.S.-based lender that targets borrowers in developing nations where credit scores are often hard to come by has raised $50 million in new equity funding.
Tala, based in Santa Monica, Calif., plans to use the latest round of funding to develop new products for its customers in Kenya, Tanzania, the Philippines, India and Mexico.
It also raised $15 million in debt capital that it will use to fund loans.
Wrap-Up of LendIt Fintech USA 2018 (Lend Academy) Rated: AAA
Last week the sixth annual LendIt USA conference took place in San Francisco. Officially known as LendIt Fintech USA 2018 this event was, in my opinion, the best we have ever produced.
The opening keynote, for the second year in a row, was delivered by Scott Sanborn, the CEO of LendingClub. He gave a different kind of presentation this year. He didn’t talk much about LendingClub at all, instead choosing to focus his keynote on financial health and the looming crisis that maybe coming. He gave us all something to consider beyond just disruption, he said we should think about three key areas: financial inclusion, regulatory innovation and customer alignment. He ended with a call to action for the industry. He wanted everyone to focus on what problem you are solving and what you can do to help restore financial health to all Americans.
The 5 Best Personal Loans for Good Credit (Student Loan Hero) Rated: AAA
The average credit score of Americans is 700, based on April 2017 data from Fair Isaac Corp., an analytics company that issues the FICO credit score.
If your score meets or beats that average, it’s enough to put you in the good credit score range, which goes from 670 to 739. As a result, you should have a good chance of getting approved for some of the best personal loans for good credit.
Your Best Options If You Need a Personal Loan With a Cosigner (Student Loan Hero) Rated: A
As you compare, you’ll find LendingClub, Citizens Bank, and FreedomPlus— all online lenders that accept cosigners. They all accept FICO scores under 700, with LendingClub accepting FICO scores as low as 600.
Here’s a list of some online lenders that accept cosigners for personal loans:
- Citizens Bank
- OneMain Financial
Avant vs. LendUp: Which Is Right for You? (Student Loan Hero) Rated: A
Not only will Avant consider your application even if you have a low credit score, but working with this lender has other benefits.
- You can get your money after one business day.
- There are no prepayment fees.
- Although the average customer has a credit score between 600 and 700, those with poor credit are also considered.
- The company has a 95% customer satisfaction rate.
- The lender offers self-service tools and live support seven days a week.
The biggest benefit of LendUp is the ability to get money fast. In certain states, you could even have your funds in 15 minutes. But there are some other positives as well.
- There are multiple options if you’re having trouble paying back the loan.
- Repeat customers can borrow more and at lower rates.
- There’s an education platform with free videos and articles breaking down complex financial matters. It also teaches you how to make better money decisions.
Wunder Capital Raises $ 112 Million in Financing To Fuel Commercial Solar Growth in the U.S. (Crowdfunder Insider) Rated: A
Wunder Capital, a firm that develops and manages solar investment funds through partnerships, test processes, underwriting framework and its investment portal, announced on Wednesday it secured $112 million in equity and debt financing to accelerate the growth of the company.
9 Ways To Invest In Real Estate Without Buying Property (Forbes) Rated: A
A recent survey from GoBankingRates revealed that many cities with the most growth were inland, including: Buffalo, New York (34.6%), Atlanta, Georgia (24.54%), and Cincinnati, Ohio (20.6%).
Websites like Fundrise and RealtyShares let you invest into commercial or residential real estate investments and receive cash flow distributions in return.
Fundrise returned an average of 11.4% on invested dollars in 2017 net of fees after all, and you don’t have to be an accredited investor to open an account.
Goldman Sachs Has Big Plans for Marcus and the Future of Retail Banking (Crowdfund Insider) Rated: AAA
Blankfein commented on the other obvious strategic advantage. Their cost of capital is super low. Unlike many of the early entrants into the online lending sector, Marcus has access to deposits via their acquisition of GE Capital Bank several years back – something no other US based online lender can claim. Even with their industry leading interest rate for current accounts (now 1.6% when most banks pay a fraction of that), Marcus can crush the competition in loan originations.
Goldman Sachs’ hot new business is lending to subprime consumers, and Wall Street’s starting to ask questions (Business Insider) Rated: B
Marcus has originated more than $3bn of loans since inception, recently it has become know that more than 10 percent of the loans were sub prime; they have said this is a natural evolution of the loan business and they are being very selective in approving of applications.
GreenSky Personal Loans Review: Low-Interest Loans for Home Improvement (Student Loan Hero) Rated: A
As an online loan servicer, GreenSky works with borrowers and merchants to provide low-cost personal loans for home improvement, specialty retail, and healthcare expenses. It’s funded more than $10 billion in loans to over 1.3 million customers, according to the lender.
Individual borrowers can apply for home improvement loans, which can be used for flooring, windows, landscaping, or other projects. Home improvement loans come with fixed APRs between 3.99% and 23.99%, as of April 18, 2018. You can choose terms of 42, 66, or 90 months. For the most up-to-date rates, check GreenSky’s website.
Real estate crowdfunding: What you need to know (Bankless Times) Rated: A
Right now, real estate crowdfunding companies are becoming very popular because they allow you to pool your resources in order to buy property or to finance real estate companies who are looking to build properties.
48 Million Detailed Psychometric Records on Individuals Leaked (InfoSecurity Magazine) Rated: B
About 48 million records of detailed personal information on tens of millions of individuals have been leaked, containing Cambridge Analytica–style information gathered and scraped from multiple sources.
The culprit, as is the case all too often, is a misconfigured cloud storage repository, in this case belonging to a company called LocalBlox. LocalBlox bills itself as a personal and business data search service, but it’s bread and butter is data-harvesting and the creation of psychometric profiles of individuals.
Point Initiates Forward Flow Purchase Program with Atalaya: Unlocking Home Equity Wealth (Crowdfund Insider) Rated: B
Point, a fintech platform that allows homeowners to unlock home equity wealth without taking on new debt, has agreed to a forward flow purchase program with investment firm Atalaya Capital Management to purchase up to $150 million of Point’s structured home equity investment instruments.
StreetShares Appoints Mohan A. Rao New Chief Product & Technology Officer (Crowdfund Insider) Rated: B
Financing military veteran-owned small businesses lender StreetShares announced on Wednesday it has appointed Mohan A. Rao as Chief Product and Technology Officer. According to the online lender, Rao is the former Chief Technology Officer of Hobsons, Inc., and brings more than 25 years of experience with building software products, R&D, and management consulting to the StreetShares team.
Millennium Trust Recognized as “Professional Services Company of the Year” at LendIt Fintech USA 2018 (PR Newswire) Rated: B
Millennium Trust Company, LLC, was honored at LendIt Fintech USA 2018 as the “Professional Services Company of the Year,” which is awarded to the service provider that has demonstrated deep expertise, unique value, strong ROI, commitment to clients, and the fostering of a deeper understanding of fintech. Organizations such as Cloud Lending Solutions, Deloitte, First Associates, Manatt and Salesforce also received nominations for the award.
Capsilon Expands Digital Mortgage Platform, Automating up to 80% of Manual Data Auditing & Processing Across Back Office (Capsilon) Rated: B
Capsilon, an enterprise SaaS digital mortgage solution partner to the mortgage industry, today announced the expansion of its digital mortgage platform through the addition of big data capabilities and a new set of smart tools designed to radically improve back office workflows and accelerate loan production. With this new data audit functionality, Capsilon can reduce manual data entry and speed up data auditing across the loan process, enabling companies to automate up to 80% of manual processing functions.
Crowdfunding platform hits £1 million in a day (Growth Business) Rated: AAA
Property crowdfunding platform The House Crowd have raised just over £1.3 million over a 24-hour period to support housing developments in Greater Manchester. This is the first time the business has broken the £1 million mark in a day.
Most of the money – £1.2 million – was for its Egyptian Mill Development of 42 house and 15 apartments in Lees, just outside of Manchester. Attracted by a typical return of 10 per cent each year over a 15 month investment term, investors have clambered to raise funds and support new build houses and flats as the UK housing crisis continues.
Silicon Valley investment into the UK breaks $ 1BN for the first time (Information Age) Rated: AAA
UK law firm Pennington Manches has today revealed that British companies are enjoying an unprecedented period of investment from West Coast-based US firms, with 74 deals contributing to a total value of £1.08 billion in 2017 – the first time Silicon Valley investment into the UK has broken the billion-dollar mark.
The new report found that software companies take the lion’s share of this investment, benefiting from £2.2 billion in funds since 2011. The number of deals from Silicon Valley into UK firms has increased by 252% over that period.
P2P lending set to pass £9bn milestone (Peer2Peer Finance) Rated: AAA
LENDING at the UK’s largest peer-to-peer finance platforms is fast approaching £9bn.
Data from the industry’s trade body the Peer-to-Peer Finance Association (P2PFA), released on Thursday, showed its eight members – Crowdstacker, Folk2Folk, Funding Circle, Landbay, LendingWorks, MarketInvoice, ThinCats and Zopa – reached cumulative lending of £8.96bn at the end of the first quarter of 2017.
The figure is up 11.5 per cent on the fourth quarter and 57 per cent higher year on year.
Transferwise becomes first non-bank to join BoE payments system (AltFi News) Rated: A
TransferWise has become the first non-bank payment services provider to hold a settlement account in the Bank of England’s Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) system.
The new access should lower costs for Transferwise, one of the UK’s largest fintech start-ups, as TransferWise joins the Faster Payments Scheme (FPS also).
Alternative funding for SMEs demystified (Business Matters) Rated: A
However, as Business Matters reported back in December, over 40 per cent of companies say they would have to put their expansion plans on hold if they could not attain funding.
Research shows that most SMEs turn to traditional sources of funding – such as overdrafts, credit cards and bank loans – when they need a cash injection. What’s more, many are unaware of – or are unclear about – the recent expansion in alternative forms of business financing such as crowdfunding or P2P lending. That’s a shame, because many of these new funding options are very well suited to the needs of SMEs and start-ups.
Crowd2Fund prepares to cross fintech bridge to Australia (Finextra) Rated: B
Leading P2P lending platform Crowd2Fund are launching an Australian office by becoming one the first UK-based companies to utilise the new ‘FinTech Bridge’ between the UK and Australia.
Mechanics Cooperative Bank chooses Finastra for core banking system (Real Wire) Rated: B
Mechanics Cooperative Bank has selected the Fusion Phoenix core banking system from Finastra, as well as a full suite of ancillary offerings, to provide its new technology foundation. The solution will bring together a wide-range of proven, specialized software into a single environment that is more easily managed in the back-office, providing greater workflow and interface efficiencies for the bank’s staff, and ultimately customers.
CreditEase Wins Major Awards at LendIt Fintech USA 2018 (PR Newswire) Rated: AAA
As the exclusive “Global Leader” partner of LendIt Fintech USA 2018, Yirendai was awarded “Top Consumer Lending Platform” and was the only Chinese enterprise to receive a LendIt Fintech industry award, which demonstrates high recognition of its outstanding contributions to the innovation of the financial services industry. In addition, Ms. Yihan Fang, CEO of Yirendai was nominated for “Executive of the Year” and CEFIF was nominated for “Top Fintech Equity Investor”. Both nominations are strong recognition of the great achievements CreditEase has made in both wealth management and Fintech investment fields.
Fintech Start-up 100Credit Gets $ 159M From State-owned China Reform Fund (China Money Network) Rated: AAA
China Reform Fund Management Co.,Ltd, a private equity firm backed by China Reform Holdings Corporation Ltd and other central state-owned enterprises, has led a RMB1 billion (US$159 million) series C round in 100Credit, a fintech start-up that uses big data to provide credit services.
Existing investor Sequoia Capital China also participated in the round, according to 100Credit’s announcement on its official WeChat account.
Softbank leads $ 25m Modalku round, while 500 Startups backs HelloGold (TechinAsia) Rated: B
Alipay pilots digitized national ID cards (China). The digital payments app run by Alibaba affiliate Ant Financial is testing out integration of the Chinese government’s pilot digital ID card scheme, which could one day replace physical ID cards.
Orange’s entry into digital banking forces old guard to react (Financial Times) Rated: AAA
Orange Bank has already onboarded more than 100,000 customers since launch, only Revolut and Boursorama, Société Générale’s digital banking arm have made more progress in the same timeframe; this continues the wider trend across Europe as digital banking becomes a bigger part of the financial services ecosystem.
Swedish startup Tink just smashed open the floodgates to 300 banks’ data – and it’s a game-changer for Nordic fintech (Business Insider Nordic) Rated: A
Last year, after raising €14 million in funding from a consortium of traditional and online banks, Tink pivoted to licensing its technology to banks so they can build their own apps and fintech services.
The startup is now doubling down on its B2B business by launching a third-party developer platform. This means that the same technology that Tink has provided to banks like Nordea and SEB, will now be open to any company that wants to gain access to a given consumer’s account data (with the consumer’s permission).
The Crowdfunding Trend – Threat or Opportunity? (Eureka) Rated: A
There are some concerns that the rise of crowdfunding will cause major disruption across industries. According to the world bank, 2016 saw more money raised from crowdfunding than from venture capital.
In Finland, for example, there is no requirement for crowdfunders to have an MiFID licence, which means that companies who have obtained a licence are more strictly regulated than their unlicensed competitors. Other nations have been quicker to adapt – in France and the UK existing legislation has been brought smoothly up to date to be compatible with crowdfunding.
GDPR and financial advice: Special categories of personal data (Professional Adviser) Rated: A
The difference between ‘data’ and ‘sensitive data’ – that is, between Article 6, which we considered in more detail here, and Article 9 – is that the individual must give explicit consent to the processing of each type of special category of data.
If, for example, a firm will be asking someone whether they are a smoker and will also be recording they are a member of a specific trade union, then the firm would to need capture explicit consent from the individual that they are happy for the firm to collect and process this data about their health and their trade union membership.
For financial advisers, this consent will need to be gathered early in the customer engagement process, with it being made clear the data will be processed and what it will be processed for.
Mintos Marketplace Adds ID Finance Loans Issued in Kazakhstan (Crowdfund Insider) Rated: AAA
Mintos, an online marketplace that provides individuals with a simplified way to invest in loans originated by a variety of alternative lending companies, announced on Wednesday that fintech firm ID Finance has further diversified investment opportunities on the Mintos marketplace by launching personal loans listed in Euro (EUR) and Kazakhstani tenge (KZT) under its Solva brand in Kazakhstan.
According to the companies, Solva uses a scoring system built around machine learning, advanced risk assessment techniques, multiple search technologies, big data and text mining. The system also evaluates the device on which the loan application is being filled out and the user’s behaviour when filling out the application.
Mo money, mo cash (Financial Times) Rated: AAA
Poor old cheques. And cryptocurrencies don’t fare too well either.
US-based fintech firm announces its expansion in India’s lending space (Medianama) Rated: AAA
California-based fintech company Tala said that it is bringing its lending app to India. This expansion was announced along with a new $50 million Series C funding led by Revolution Growth its operations in the country which is already in progress. In addition to Revolution Growth, Tala’s Series C round includes existing investors IVP, Data Collective, Lowercase Capital, Ribbit Capital, and Female Founders Fund. Steve Murray, managing partner at Revolution Growth, will join Tala’s board of directors.
Singapore Fintech Association established Marketplace Lending Committee (Finextra) Rated: AAA
The Singapore Fintech Association (SFA) today announces the launch of the Marketplace Lending committee and website, in response to the rapid growth in the sector.
In 2016, Southeast Asia’s alternative finance market reached a record US$215.94 million, a growth of 362% compared with 2015. Data for 2016 showed that Singapore’s alternative finance market size was valued at US$163.75 million, more than double the entire value from 2013-2015. This upward trend is reflected internationally. The global lending market valued at US$3.5 billion in 2013, expecting to reach US$1 trillion by 2050, according to Statista, a market research company.
Revolut empire-builder seeking to tame “the Asian dragon” (AltFi News) Rated: A
Rishi Stocker, head of partnerships at Revolut, is currently focused on coordinating the banking challenger’s entry into Japan. Speaking to AltFi, Stocker said that the Japanese market, unlike others in Asia, is a tough nut to crack.
He said that regulators are “very keen on local presence and very concerned about international companies entering and then suddenly changing their strategy and leaving”.
To allow Revolut to set up shop in Japan, regulators have insisted that the fintech firm appoint an experienced local Japanese expert as a director of the entity. “That’s quite an interesting nuance of Japan whereas a lot of other markets are a lot more open – so long as there’s a strong compliance team based in our head office in London,” explained Stocker.