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A Busy Year So Far for GLI Finance

The specialist SME finance provider GLI Finance has now released its interim results.

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GLIF has made the headlines a number of times over the past 6 months. In June, the disposal of two CLO investments meant that the company suddenly had a spare $20.4m to channel into the SME finance space. GLIF also added a number of platforms to its budding armada of alternative finance providers. Finpoint UK, TradeRiver Finance, Dansk Faktura Børs, CrowdShed and Proplend all joined the GLIF family between January and June 2014. But Geoff Miller, CEO of the company, wasn’t done yet.

Since June 30th, a further three strategic investments have been announced: Finexkap, LiftForward and The Credit Junction.  A little background on each of the additions:

  • Finexkap is a unique provider of working capital for small businesses. The French platform offers a short-term, flexible and paperless receivables funding solution with no volume or timeframe conditions. The particularly unusual element of this soon-to-launch site lies in the style in which investors will access the platform’s receivables. Finexcap has set up a securitization vehicle that purchases receivables and which then issues different tranches of financing.

  • LiftForward is a marketplace platform provider. The business provides white-label portals for processing loans and payments, handling all of the back-end servicing.

  • The Credit Junction is a working capital and supply chain finance provider. By exploiting superior technology, the platform is streamlining the application, vetting and approval process – meaning better transparency and less time taken to get funding for businesses.

Geoff Miller, CEO of GLI Finance, commented:

“There continue to be issues with the provision of SME finance globally. The banks continue to be risk averse but many have also adopted a purely quantitative approach to lending that makes many businesses unbankable, despite their huge growth potential. At the same time, many new alternative finance platforms are looking more towards institutional capital to fund their lending to these businesses, rather than a broader based P2P model, so the outlook for GLIF is very positive.”

“GLI Finance is soon to have a unique range of 16 SME finance platforms that span asset class and geography. We are now entering a phase of scaling these platforms significantly so that they can lend to a greater number of businesses and help GLIF deliver exciting returns for its shareholders.”

Mr. Miller’s comments appear to indicate that he is now satisfied with the range of geographies, industries, sizes of lending and types of lending covered by his collection of platforms. A fresh focus upon the scaling of the current GLIF family companies will inevitably mean the deploying of an increasing amount of capital via each platform – as opposed to an emphasis on equity investments into new platforms.

GLIF has invested over £6.4m in the equity of platforms in 2014 (excluding the amount invested in LiftForward – which has not been disclosed). The SME financier has put a further £9.2m million to work as lending via its portfolio of platforms. Hefty amounts, to be sure, and there are already whispers of more exciting GLI Finance investments on the horizon. We’ll keep you posted. 

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Geoff Miller

Investor and former CEO of GLI Finance

GLI Finance Limited

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