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Exclusive: Alternative lending growth was slowing before coronavirus

The sector saw loan originations in the UK increase in 2019 but at a lower rate of growth than in 2018.

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Total lending among peer-to-peer and marketplace lenders in the UK passed £6.26bn in 2019, a growth rate of 10.7 per cent on the previous year.

This compares to a 12 per cent rate of growth recorded in 2018. The slow down, recorded in data gathered by Brismo (recently acquired by Loanclear) record the period up until the world discovered the full ramifications of coronavirus but points to a maturation of the UK alternative lending industry as well as a number of headwinds independent of COVID-19.

“The slowdown has been a continuation from 2018,” says Ben Arram of consultancy Bovill. “It is largely Brexit driven.” 

The figures are exclusively revealed as part of AltFi’s Alternative Lending State of the Market Report which offers the most comprehensive overview of the alternative lending landscape in 2020. 

“2019 was a solid year for the UK business in a challenging economic environment,” says Lisa Jacobs, Europe managing director for Funding Circle. “We grew originations and made progress towards becoming more profitable. Regulation and Brexit both factored into what was happening in the industry in 2019.” 

Small business lending from banks was down 3.6 per cent in 2019 and consumer lending fell around 10 per cent, according to data from banking trade body UK Finance. Market share Total loan originations in the P2P business space hit £2.2bn in 2019, up from £2.1bn in 2019, while consumer lending was flat at £1.9bn, according to Brismo.

Produced with the support of our sponsors Credit Kudos, DueDil and Goodwin Law, the 2020 report covers the latest developments, industry consolidation, changing market shares and high profile exits. 

Get your copy of the AltFi Alternative Lending State of the Market Report 2020 now. 

And don't miss the launch webinar! 

We're also hosting a free launch webinar to mark the 2020 edition of the report on 21 October where our team and some of the report's contributors will be discussing its findings in more detail and answering your questions. 

Register your place today

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Ben Arram

Consultant (Capital Markets)


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