German marketplace lending platform smava closes $34m Series C.
Smava, a leading marketplace lender in Germany, has clinched $34m in a round led by Runa Capital, with additional participation from Verdane Capital, mojo.capital and a gaggle of existing investors. Runa is an active investor in the alternative finance sector, having already invested in consumer lender Zopa and gateway platforms Lending Robot and Lendio. Verdane is a Scandinavian private equity firm with a track record of investing across the consumer internet space.
Andre Bliznyuk, Partner at Runa Capital, and Hendrik Aspen, Partner at Verdane Capital will be joining Smava’s advisory board.
Alexander Artopé, CEO and co-founder of smava, said that the $34m will allow the company to expand its customer base, hire additional talent and to enhance its credit scoring technology.
Smava is a consumer lending platform which connects borrowers to a broad base of investors, spanning from banks to private investors. Initially looked to as more of an online credit broker, the company has been attempting to pivot into the marketplace lending space, in line with the evolution of the broader peer-to-peer lending sector into what we now refer to as "marketplace lending". Smava raised $16m in equity money in April 2015 in a round which was led by Phenomen Ventures.
Smava has been around since 2007 and employs more than 180 people. The Berlin-based outfit claims to have lent over $1.75bn to date, which would make it by far the largest marketplace lender in mainland Europe, according to the Liberum AltFi Volume Index CE.
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.