Zopa “growing [lending] by 45-50%” despite a freeze on new lenders.
Peer-to-peer lender says it has been tightening credit amid a squeeze on disposable income.
CEO says credit conditions normalising after 8 years of improvement, thinks the economy is OK.
LONDON — The CEO of peer-to-peer lending business Zopa has rejected claims the business is struggling to attract borrowers, saying the platform is still growing lending volumes by as much as 50%.
Zopa stopped accepting new money in December 2016, amid high demand to lend over its platform. The Financial Times wrote in September that Zopa’s experience highlights the “enormous difficulty faced by marketplace lenders attempting to find new borrowers.”
CEO Jaidev Janardana told Business Insider: “I do struggle a little bit with this thing that we’re struggling with borrowers. We have been growing [lending] by 45-50%. I don’t think there are other businesses that are growing at 50% year-on-year that would be looked at as struggling.”
Speaking to Business Insider at LendIt Europe this week, Janardana said existing investors have funded the platform’s growth by deploying more capital on the platform.
“What we have had is an issue of too much popularity on the other side,” he said. “Investors, particularly given ISAs, have just wanted more of our product. We see that as an incredibly good thing actually.”
Zopa, founded in 2005, is credited with inventing the idea of peer-to-peer lending: matching borrowers with investors willing to fund their loans online. The company only does consumer lending in the UK and has lent over £2 billion to date.
Zopa has built up a waiting list of 15,000 people who want to lend over the platform. The company hopes to let some of them onto the platform towards the end of the year.
Janardana said: “One of the things we could have done is just reduce prices and …read more
Source:: Business Insider