French Peer-to-Peer site Prêt D’Union Raises €10 Million from Investors

Prêt D'UnionThe leader on the Peer-to-Peer (P2P) lending market in France, PRÊT D’UNION has raised €10 Million in a new financing round led by Schibsted, owner of Leboncoin.fr and a shareholder in 20 Minutes France. This brings PRET D’UNION’s total funding to over €18 Million since its launch.  Following the investment, Marc Brandsma and Marine Desbans from Schibsted Growth will join Prêt D’Union’s supervisory board.Prêt D’Union was founded in October 2009 and launched in 2011.  The approach was driven by the fact that traditional financial institutions charge consumers high rates for loans while offering a low return for savers.  The Prêt D’Union P2P platform solves this inefficiency by allowing qualified investors to fund personal loans offering competitive rates.  Investors earn a significantly better return than offered in standard savings accounts. This approach is similar to the growing number of P2P platforms which have grown dramatically in both the United States, the United Kingdom and elsewhere.

Prêt D’Union is the first and only P2P lending platform to have obtained a credit institution license and a broker licence from the French Central Bank. The management team includes the 4 co-founders, Charles Egly (previously at BNP Paribas), Geoffroy Guigou (formerly at McKinsey & Poweo), Lionel Beaudet (previously at Virgin Mobile) and Thomas Beylot (previously at PriceMinister.com), under the supervision of a board composed of experienced executives from banks and financial companies.

Charles EglyPrêt D’Union  facilitated 47 M€ of loans over the last 22 months and 35 M€ from January to October 2013. We have reached a volume of more than 5 M€ of new loans every month, with a 10% monthly growth rate. This new financing round has been largely oversubscribed, setting a new milestone in our growth history. It will enable us to accelerate our development through innovative technological projects – big data and risk pricing, new recruitments and innovative offers for our customers, both lenders and borrowers.” Charles Egly , CEO, and Geoffroy Guigou, General Manager of Prêt D’Union.

“Being able to sign up a media powerhouse like Schibsted which owns leading websites such as Leboncoin.fr as a new shareholder and retaining our historical shareholders demonstrates our business model’s potential as an innovative and socially responsible platform. Prêt D’Union aims at achieving both in France and in Europe what Lending Club has achieved in the United States.” Donald Bryden, Chairman of the Supervisory Board

Marc Brandsma“We share with Prêt D’Union the values of integrity, transparency and respect of our customers that make the strength of Schibsted. Selecting Prêt D’Union for our first investment in France emphasizes our strong commitment to build an ecosystem of innovative companies leveraging the group’s audience and expertise in order to boost their growth.” Marc Brandsma, Managing Director at Schibsted Growth.

Schibsted GrowthSchibsted started in in Norway in 1839 and has grown into an international media and Internet group. Listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange since 1992, it has a market capitalization of around 4.5 billion Euros. In France, SCHIBSTED operates 20 Minutes, France’s most read daily newspaper with 4,376,000 readers a day, and Leboncoin.fr, France’s leading online classified ads service and 8th largest website with 17,610,000 unique visitors in June 2013.

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