News Briefing - Crowdfunding, SME And Alternative Finance

Young woman whispers in friend's ear

1.UK – P2P


Peer2Peer Finance News reports more problems at GLI Finance.


“GLI FINANCE has announced it will close its loss-making peer-to-peer supply chain finance platform, blaming worsening market conditions and a £1.1m hit from an insolvent borrower.

The Aim-listed alternative finance group said on Friday that Sancus Finance is set to report a £1m operating loss.

“The group believes the market for supply chain finance has changed significantly, with credit insurers reducing appetite to write cover and increasing premiums markedly,” said GLI Finance in a stock market announcement.

“In light of this, and recognising the difficult market conditions facing supply chain finance more generally, the group has taken the decision to close its supply chain finance offering.”

GLI Finance added that the group has a £1.1m exposure to a supply chain finance borrower which recently went into administration and this will be recognised in its full-year results.”

2. UK – SMEs


The Sunday Times looks at lending volumes for SMEs.


“Growth in lending to small businesses slumped last year as fears mounted over a no-deal Brexit and company bosses chose to pay off debt and stockpile cash rather than take out loans.

Net lending to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) shrank to £500m, compared with £700m in 2017, a report to be released tomorrow by the state-owned British Business Bank will show. Net lending — the difference between new lending and repayments — stood at £3.3bn in 2016.

The report also reveals a dramatic slowdown in the growth of alternative forms of funding, such as peer-to-peer lending and asset finance. Lending through peer-to-peer platforms rose by 18% last year, compared with 51% in 2017.”


3. US – FinTech


Crowdfund Insider reports:

“Meridian, a Canada-based credit union, announced last week the launch of its new digital platform, motusbank. According to Meridian, motusbank has already received the official go-ahead from the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) and will open for business this spring. Its description reads:

“motusbank is different from other digital banks. Like Meridian, motusbank customers, referred to as members, will benefit from better pricing and services because there are no shareholders expecting quarterly returns. Digital, but not impersonal, motusbank promises to deliver superior member service regardless of communication channel. Members will also have a say on ideas for new products and features using tools for feedback to help inform the continuous evolution of motusbank offerings.”


4. International – FinTech


CTech runs a feature interview with the CEO of Leumitech.


“On Wednesday, Leumitech, the technology banking arm of Israeli Bank Leumi, celebrated its fifth anniversary. Now serving over 5,000 startups in Israel, the U.K., and the U.S., Leumitech extends credit spanning from $20,000 to several hundreds millions of dollars to companies, according to CEO Yifat Oron. It also serves a large number of Israeli venture capital funds, often registered in offshore locations.”

5. International - SMEs


Bloomberg Quint reports:

"India’s financial capital has become a breeding ground for startups, only next to Benglauru and Delhi-NCR. It has great funding availability with the presence of some of the biggest financial institutions and venture capitalists in the country. Being the second-most densely populated city in the world, Mumbai also provides a huge customer base to startups. It also boasts of a few of the biggest startup incubators such as IIT-Bombay's SINE. Yet, a number of concerns about rising costs have made it harder for startups to expand business in the maximum city, according to a KPMG report."