This week in Alternative Finance

This week in Alternative Finance

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There have been a number of exciting developments in the p2p space this week. First and foremost, a groundbreaking partnership between Funding Circle and Santander was unveiled. The arrangement will operate as a reciprocal referral system – and will undoubtedly accelerate the already rapid growth of the Funding Circle platform.

The P2PFA announced last week that its members have now standardized their methodology for calculating defaults. We got the reaction of Giles Andrews, who was thrilled by the prospect of standardized information disclosure among platforms.

A fresh face in the peer-to-business space will offer the world’s first insured and secured p2p product. ArchOver will take a first charge against borrower’s accounts receivable as security for all loans. That debtor book will then be insured through Lloyd’s of London as an added layer of security.

As one of the key platforms involved in ongoing discussions with the Treasury, RateSetter provided AltFi with an update on where the negotiations stand. Whilst agreed to in principle by government, it seems the p2p ISA will take some time yet to be realized.

In the invoice finance sector – Platform Black added to its trophy cabinet – claiming the title of “Supply Chain Finance Firm of the Year UK” at the 2014 M&A Awards. The platform also provided some insightful SME research – revealing small business confidence in general to be on the rise.

Syndicate Room was dubbed the fastest growing platform in the equity crowdfunding space, according to research from Knowledge Peers. Surprising in that it is but a year removed from launch, the platform has grown at a rate of 200% over the past 6 months.

In the rewards space, Indiegogo announced a countrywide crowdfunding tour of the UK with £1 million to channel into entrepreneurial projects.

We also started up the Crowdfunding Campaign of the Week series – which began with Crowdcube’s Brain in Hand campaign. Brain in Hand is an assistive smartphone technology designed to aid those living with mental health conditions.

Ryan Weeks returns with his monthly column – this time round looking at the unheralded yet significant developments within the space, more questions around terminology, the rising tide of institutional capital and the evolution of investor protection within the industry.

James Levy kicked off what will be a series of articles surveying the various different segments of online Market Lending (also known as alternative finance). These articles will conclude just before the AltFi Global Summit in New York this November – at which James will be presenting.

That’s all for now.

Kind regards,

David Stevenson