ThinCats, a secured peer to peer lending platform, announced on Thursday it is marking 18 months of working with Edinburgh-based broker, Neil Davidson, by highlighting the importance of understanding the needs of its partners’ clients.
According to ThinCats, Davidson, who is Managing Director of Edinburgh-based Alderburn Finance Solutions, became a partner to the online lender in 2016. Much like other broker partners, he is a seasoned professional in the finance industry, with an impressive track record of matching SMEs across Scotland and the North East of England with exactly the right type of funding for their needs. When asked why his partnership with ThinCats has been so successful over the last 18 months, Davidson stated:
“They think the same way as I do; I value ThinCats understanding of risk. While they are not lending themselves, they do ensure the loans presented to their investors are of good quality. This is time and effort well spent and it provides confidence and consistency to both borrower and lender. If the loan request is marginal, ThinCats try to work out how the deal could be done, rather than look for reasons why it shouldn’t be done. This is an important differentiation with some other lenders in the marketplace, and makes my job much easier.”
While also describing the most important aspects of his broker role, Neil explained:
“The first big question for me is, does my instinct tell me that I would invest my own money in the business? I need to get the right feeling; this aspect is helped by the number of years that I have been in the industry, and the sheer number of businesses that I have spoken to over the years.” The answer is nearly always there after my first meeting with the client. Do I thoroughly understand the business and the opportunity? Do the management team really impress me – are they inspirational? Do they have an excellent understanding of their business and the market? If the answers to these questions are yes, then my job is simply to understand the detail, to help the client present their borrowing case to the lender in a concise, accurate and balanced presentation, and to ensure that lenders have the information necessary for them to make their own judgement on whether to lend.”
In regards to the lending industry, Neil added:
“Sometimes there are challenges that need to be worked through first before getting to the right point. When my initial reaction is ‘no’, I don’t immediately walk away – I’m always up-front with my reasons and try to help the client as far as I can; it may be that the funding can be accessed further down the line, with some work and changes from the client’s point of view.”