LendingCrowd, one of the UK’s fastest-growing alternative finance lenders to the SME market, announced on Wednesday it secured £2 million through its latest investment round, which was led by Equity Gap and included a number of prominent private investors from Scotland’s entrepreneurial and finance scene and the Scottish Investment Bank. This news comes less than two months after LendingCrowd launched its Innovative Finance ISA (IFISA) with a target rate of return of 6% a year.
LendingCrowd also reported that it launched its debut television advert, which was designed to bring the opportunities available through P2P lending to a wider audience. The advert features Geoff, who decided to “Think Outside The Bank” and invest with the platform after becoming disillusioned with the low rates of return on other investments. The online lending platform, which is authorized by the Financial Conduct Authority, has more than 4,500 investors signed up to its platform and is on track to significantly increase investor numbers this year. It now offers three IFISA products – the passive Growth ISA, the Income ISA and the active Self Select ISA. Stuart Lunn, LendingCrowd CEO and co-founder, stated:
“Having laid solid foundations for the business over the last couple of years, we now have a position in the market that is starting to pay dividends. We have a strong pipeline of both investors and SME demand and with such a strong trajectory, we are now actively speaking to the venture capital and private equity communities about our next phase of growth.”
Jock Millican from Equity Gap, also commented:
“We are extremely pleased that our syndicate members once again backed LendingCrowd, with this raise being the largest single investment by Equity Gap to date. Existing and new investors in LendingCrowd recognise the progress to date and the potential for the business to scale.”
Kerry Sharp, Director of the Scottish Investment Bank, added:
“We are delighted to provide continued support to LendingCrowd who have demonstrated real market traction with their innovative peer-to-peer lending platform in Scotland.”