Capital Match - the Singaporean P2B lender - has secured S$1 million ($713,000) in a Series A funding round. The investment was spearheaded by Innosight Ventures, and also included previous investors Crystal Horse Investments and CE-Tech Invest. Capital Match states that the money will be used "for product development, marketing and sales activities."
The funding round shows the platform’s remarkable pace of development. AltFi covered the platform's launch in May of this year. Then, as now, the company offered loans from S$50,000 to S$200,000 for between 3 and 12 months at interest rates of around 1.5% to 2.5% per month.
The company was formed after founder Pawel Kuznicki saw that, whilst SMEs represent 99% of businesses and employ 70% of employees, they receive only 27% of business credit. Mr Kuznicki will be hoping that the success of this investment will allow Capital Match to expand its operations and make business credit more available across Singapore. Mr Kuzkicki said of the offering:
"The peer to peer lending model has been taking off around the world. We are thrilled to be bringing this model to Singapore and serving the needs of SMEs in this dynamic economy".
As further help to fend off competition - such as new local rival FundedHere - Pete Bonee, a partner at Innosight Ventures, will be joining the board of directors at Capital Match.
Last month, AltFi reported on CoAssets’ decision to list in Australia instead of Singapore - a decision that Co-founder Goh defended by saying:
"While Singapore has a good start-up ecosystem, more support is needed for certain growth stage companies. With the limited market size here".
In light of this, one may wonder if Capital Match will turn overseas as it continues to grow, or if the Singapore market can satisfy the platform’s ambitions. Robson Lee, a corporate lawyer at ShookLin & Bok commented:
"Being a relatively new area of investment for investors here, it remains to be seen if there is a critical mass of investment schemes and investors to make such crowdfunding take root in Singapore."
There is little doubt that announcements such as Capital Match's will be one of the steps on the path towards developing Singapore's alternative finance market. It shall be interesting to see, in the future, if platforms such as Capital Match will be forced to follow the path of CoAssets, or if local markets can grow sufficiently to sustain more developed alternative lenders.