Credit cards are a convenient type of lending provided by banks. Users have access to credit on demand – but there is a cost. Typically, rates are very high; some cards come with annual fees and other charges. Elfin Card is a UK-based company that wants to provide an alternative to expensive credit cards, and the company is raising money on Seedrs.
According to the offering page, Elfin has already topped its £1.2 million funding goal. As it stands today, Elfin has raised 113% of its goal, or £1.365 million, backed by 181 investors. This is a follow-up round, as Elfin has raised money on Seedrs twice in the past. According to its website, Elfin has already raised £3.7 million in equity capital.
The equity offer is being sold at a pre-money valuation of £25 million. The investment is EIS-qualified and has agreed to participate in the Seedrs Secondary Market.
Elfin reports that it has lent £50 million to date and has grown its card user base by 10% monthly from July to September 2023. To quote the offering page:
“We believe credit cards are too expensive in the UK. They come with high-interest rates: average credit card APRs have reached an all-time high of 30.4%. Not to mention the many additional fees (balance transfer fee, annual fee, cash advance fee, late payment fee, etc). They also come with artificially-long repayment schedules, trapping borrowers into debt.”
Elfin says its alternative service offers credit at “50% cheaper” than average cards. Like other card issuers, Elfin takes a percentage of each transaction (2.5%).
Elfin has been approved to offer a peer-to-peer service but has transitioned to a hybrid provider where institutions will fund the loans alongside P2P investors. The offering page indicates the company recently received £8 million in institutional support.
In a blog post from this past May, Elfin CEO Mansour Bouaziz had this to say:
“Unlike many other platforms, we are keen on continuing to offer peer-to-peer lending services. We see the institutional funding line as a natural complement to the peer-to-peer funding line. We firmly believe that running these two loan books in parallel will enable us to improve the quality of our services to all our customers and ultimately achieve our mission to help UK borrowers save on credit card costs. We’re very excited about the coming weeks and months and would like to thank you again for your continued support over the past few years!”
It is an interesting concept. Individual investors apparently can receive a return from 8% to 12% from borrowers who must meet “strict criteria.” The offering is scheduled to close in less than three weeks.
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