Just a few weeks after launching its equity crowdfunding campaign on Seedrs, peer-to-peer lending platform Wellesley has reportedly decided to suspend the initiative as it seeks to attract city investors. As previously reported, Wellesley sought to raise £1.5 million though the funding portal to continue operations. The company recently stated:
“We want to raise more capital to enable us to invest in acquiring new customers and developing our technology. All of our external funding is retail rather than institutional. Raising further equity through a retail route will help us to build a business where strong alignment of interests between investors and shareholders will build a stronger company for the long term.”
Wellesley experienced report issues late last year. AltFi reported last month that Companies House, the arm of the UK government that is under the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, served the lender with First Gazette notice on December 6, 2016, noting it may face dissolution in early February if it does not file its accounts with the government. Wellesley resolved the issue by stating the compulsory strike-off action has been discontinued and the document was being processed. The lender also explained the account filings were delayed due to the new chief financial officer needing to review processes and procedures along with completing the Seedrs campaign and to prepare its annual review.
According to the Telegraph, Wellesley intends to close the campaign as it reaches £200,000 in funding. Chief financial officer at Wellesley, Alasdair Lenman, stated that the campaign’s funding wouldn’t have a material difference to the lender’s growth speed, but would add a new level of complexity. Lenman also noted that Wellesley has not ruled out crowdfunding all together and that the latest investment would likely come from an institution or wealthy individual. Chief executive of Wellesley, Graham Wellesley, then added:
“The Seedrs fundraising was never fundamental to our survival. We were punching the sky on December 31st as our lending performance and goals showed a fantastic year.”
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