Beijing-based peer-to-peer lender Yirendai.com plans to raise about $300 million in a U.S. initial public offering, notes a recent BloombergBusiness story, citing people with knowledge of the matter. If the IPO takes place, Yirendai could become the first Chinese online-loan platform to list overseas, following the likes of offerings by U.S. companies LendingClub Corp. and On Deck Capital Inc.
The people noted that Yirendai’s goal is to list in 2015, and two of them also said that the company could be valued at about $2 billion in the share sale. Since the information is private, the sources requested not to be cited. Wang Yinyin, a Beijing-based spokeswoman for CreditEase, declined to comment.
Yirendai, which means “convenient lending and borrowing,” is among the largely unregulated industry of online loans in China. Data compiled by Yingcan Group shows that the industry has surged almost 13-fold since 2012 to $41 billion last year as the number of platforms multiplied.
Gregory Gibb, chairman of lending platform Lufax, also recently stated that the vast majority of China’s more than 1,500 P2P lenders are going to fail, with as few as one in 20 surviving.
The owner of Yirendai is CreditEase, the recipient of investment from Morgan Stanley’s Asian private-equity arm and venture-capital firms IDG Capital Partners and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. Ning Tang, founder and CEO of CreditEase, has over 10 years of microfinance experience, including time during college spent in Bangladesh with Nobel Peace Prize winner Professor Muhammad Yunus, studying poverty alleviation through microcredit.
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