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Portuguese challenger bank to invest via Spanish auto-finance fintech

Banco BNI Europa is pressing ahead with its alternative lending strategy.

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Portuguese challenger bank Banco BNI Europa is ploughing up to €15m into Spanish auto-financing loans via online specialist Lendrock.

Lendrock is an online platform that offers swift auto-financing for Spanish consumers. Its digital-only underwriting model evaluates borrowers’ credit histories ‘without cost or hassle’ and supports all aspects of the financing lifecycle, including origination, underwriting and servicing. The firm targets customers in the ‘near-prime’ segment.

The Banco BNI partnership begins with the bank acquiring part of lendrock’s existing loan portfolio. This will, the bank says, offer swift exposure to the platform’s loans and set the stage for the acquisition of monthly origination volumes henceforth.

“Investing in asset backed auto loans to consumers in Spain is a very attractive class of investment to us,” said Pedro Coelho, executive chairman of Banco BNI Europa. “With the Lendrock team, we have identified a highly professional partner, whose credit analysis process has proven totally convincing to us.”

Meanwhile, Lendrock co-founder and CEO Ventura Pobre said that he was delighted to add a ‘top tier’ institutional investor and that the platform is now ready to scale.

Banco BNI Europa has been a champion of fintech lending in the past few years, forging strategic partnerships with a wide range of online lenders, including MarketInvoice, Fellow Finance and CrossLend. Its fintech-heavy strategy carried it to profitability in the first half of 2017 and attracted the attention of several equity investors, with the controlling stake of the bank changing hands in April.

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