eMoneyUnion has on-boarded a triumvirate of high profile industry figures, and has also secured a six-figure equity investment.
eMoneyUnion has been quietly humming along up to now. The consumer lending platform exited BETA testing in late November, a phase in which £600k was lent across 5 distinct asset classes (secured 1st charge, secured 2nd charge, personal guarantor, unsecured and vehicle hire purchase).
Clearly the time has now come to push the pedal to the metal. The platform has announced the appointment of Derek Zissman, Sir John Hegarty and Tom Teichman. Derek joins the team in the role of Chairman. He formerly served as Vice Chairman at KPMG, was a founding partner of KPMG’s Corporate Finance Group and has an extensive background in financial services. Sir John will cover creative angles for the platform – presumably a marketing and community focused role. He was a founding partner at Saatchi and Saatchi in 1970. Tom joins the team in an investment-oriented role. He has sat on the boards of numerous disruptive businesses, including lastminute.com, Kobalt Music, Moshimonsters and notonthehighstreet.com.
Mr. Zissman commented:
"It seems to me that there is huge demand for new ways of borrowing and lending and eMoneyUnion has the credentials to make a success of this exciting opportunity".
Sir John Hegarty also weighed in:
"We are always looking for business and brands to disrupt the market just as Spotify transformed music buying and Uber transformed car transport. I can't think of a market more ripe for disruption, nor a company better placed to do it."
Founder Lee Birkett tells us that the three will also be making a six-figure investment into the platform, although the exact amount hasn’t been disclosed. eMoneyUnion crowdfunded itself into existence using leading equity-based platform Crowdcube, raising £427,580 from 100 private investors for 21.38% of the company in early 2014.
The platform has also appointed Spark Capital to serve as corporate financial advisers. The group will be identifying institutions with a consumer credit license and directing them towards eMoneyUnion. In other words, it appears as though some manner of debt funding commitment may follow on from the equity investment.
Chief amongst the platform’s core differentiators is its target borrowers – who Founder Lee Birkett describes as having been “excluded from the mainstream”. That likely translates to a slightly higher-risk set of borrowers than the mostly super-prime consumers that are catered to by the likes of Zopa and RateSetter. A glance at the “eMarketPlace” confirms that advertised yields tend to top 10%.
Mr. Birkett summarised the significance of the appointments:
"This is a real coup for the business. It is testimony of our credibility and opportunity that we can bring such great people to be part of the Union."
AltFi is returning to Amsterdam for its second annual Summit in the city. The inaugural event last year was a roaring success, with key figures from across Continental Europe's alternative finance and digital banking sectors highlighted. These included Jeroen Broekema, managing director of Funding Circle Netherlands, and Mieke van Engelen, head of innovative partnerships at ABN AMRO's standalone lending platform, New10.