News Briefing - Crowdfunding, SME And Alternative Finance

pied piper followed by children

1.UK - ISA


The Government's Lifetime ISA was reprieved last week despite calls for it to be scrapped, according to This Is Money.

“Lisa lets under-40s pay up to £4,000 each year into a tax-free account to save towards a first house purchase – or retirement. They receive a juicy 25 per cent bonus and can save in shares or cash.

Those who have ambitions to purchase a home in just a few years' time are safer using the cash version. 

But there are just two available – from building societies Skipton (online) and Nottingham (in branch), both paying interest of one per cent.” 


2.; UK – P2P


Peer-To-Peer Finance News reports:

“Archover has opened a Birmingham office to support clients across the Midlands.

The peer-to-peer business lender said on Monday that it has appointed experienced corporate finance and investment banker David Newton to run the new office, which is part of the firm’s plans for nationwide expansion.

Newton began his career as a chartered accountant at Ernst & Young before undertaking a corporate finance and investment banking career in London, specialising in the provision of finance for small-and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).”


3. UK – AltFi



Mexican fast food restaurant group Chilango has launched its second retail mini-bond – dubbed Burrito 2 – with a promise of 8 per cent interest a year for four years on a minimum investment of £500, according to the Mail.

“It is a mouthwatering rate of return but it is not without risk. The 11-strong Chilango chain was set up in 2004 by Eric Partaker and Dan Houghton, both former employees of tech phenomenon Skype. 

On Friday they had already raised more than £1 million. The proceeds will be used to fund expansion of the largely London-centred operation.”


4. International – FinTech



Crowdfundinsider reports:


“Dr. Nouriel Roubini, also known as “Dr. Doom,” has extended his crypto / blockchain bashing on Twitter during the past few days. Following a widely viewed Senate Banking Committee hearing where Dr. Roubini submitted a 37 page document that eviscerated the concept of cryptocurrency calling it the “Mother of All Scams,” he has continued his diatribe with pointed criticism on both the technology and individuals active in the blockchains space.

To quote Dr. Roubini:

“The symbol of all crypto greed is that guru, investigated for pedophilia, who sets up shop in a luxury mansion in Puerto Rico just to evade taxes & who pretends to want to save Puerto Rico with a shitcoin after the hurricane. Bloodsucker leeching on the blood of 4K dead folks!”

“So BTC based on PoW is dead while the new chimera of crypto dreamers is PoS. @VitalikButerin promised PoS in 2013. Still nowhere to be seen. And anyone with any clue in crypto knows that PoS will be an even more centralized mining oligopoly – and thus not secure – than PoW”

“The Crypto middlemen are a dangerous & shady oligopoly in shady jurisdiction like China (where 75% of BTC is mined) or Russia. So Crypto nuts want to replace reputable institutions like the Fed with oligopolies in authoritarian countries. What a nuttery. Decentralization is B/S!”

“99% of thousands of shitcoins are down 90% to 99% from peak. A total Crypto-Apocalypse and Meltdown”

“Markets have spoken this year: since the peak BTC is down 70%, ETH, XRP & other major crypto-currencies are down 80-85%: while thousands of shitcoins are down 95-99%. The market has spoken. & stop bragging about high returns in previous years. Crypto land is in meltdown NOW”

“So instead of trusting governments I need to trust an oligopoly of Chinese miners who are shady and plan to shaft me? Get real once and for all: there is NO decentralization in crypto. It is a myth. It is a system controlled by a shady oligopoly of miners in shadier countries”


5. International – FinTech


Gary Cohn, formerly the Chief Economic Advisor to President Trump and former President and COO of Goldman Sachs, has joined a blockchain startup, Spring Labs, as an advisor,reports Crowdfundinsider.

Spring Labs is  building a “decentralized network for identity and credit” to provide a more secure and transparent platform for the financial services industry. Founded by online lender Avant alumni, CEO Adam Jiwan also co-founded student loan platform Future Finance as well as having worked on Wall Street for several years.

Adding Cohn, who departed the Trump administration ostensibly in opposition to the President’s stance on trade policy, is prominent addition to the growing list of advisors for the Fintech startup. It is also represents the growing willingness of old school finance types to embrace the potential for distributed ledger technology to be utilized to drive efficiencies and boost value in financial services.”