News Briefing - Crowdfunding, SME And Alternative Finance

crowd in nightclub, seen from a DJ point of view

1.UK – AltFi

New research shows startling ignorance of finance and investment in the UK. Crowdfund Insider reports:

 “Research compiled by YouGov, Seedrs, and banking app Dozens, shares a dim view of financial sophistication in the UK. According to the report, a majority of UK adults are poorly informed about financial services and planning for their future.

The study conducted by YouGov was commissioned by Dozens and Seedrs. Dozens is a current account and investment manager app that is crowdfunding on Seedrs now.

The data was gleaned from over 2,000 UK adults (aged 18+) across the UK.

The research states that in the UK:

  • 47% of adults with savings accounts don’t know what interest rate they are getting
  • Over 7 in 10 respondents (71%) have no investment products
  • Of those with investment products, only 36% have input from someone else in managing them

Referencing a study completed by the UK Financial Conduct Authority, only 6% of 18-34-year-olds received financial advice in 2017.

For the minority of people surveyed in this study who do hold investments, only 36% have input from someone else in managing them.”


2. UK – AltFi


But SMEs are beginning to take notice of alternative sources of finance, according to a survey reported by Peer2Peer Finance News.

“INCREASING numbers of UK small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are aware of alternative finance options but peer-to-peer lender Growth Street is warning of a knowledge gap in the Midlands.

The latest annual survey of 2,000 small firms by the business lender found 66 per cent of respondents had at least some knowledge of finance outside of banks, up from 54 per cent in 2018.

A third, 34 per cent, of respondents said that they were not at all confident in their knowledge of non-bank funding, fewer than the 45 per cent who attested to this last year.

However, 37 per cent of Midlands businesses said they have no confidence in their knowledge of finance sources outside the banks, just above the national average.

When asked where they would go to seek alternative finance, 12 per cent of Midlands SMEs said they would use an accountant and 17 per cent didn’t know.’

3. US – FinTech


KKR is betting big on cybersecurity firms, according to Fortune.

“There are more companies than ever seeking to provide cybersecurity solutions, and those companies need capital to grow. Enter the likes of private equity giant KKR, which closed its $711 million Next Generation Technology (NGT) Growth Fund in 2016 with an eye toward investing in growth-stage companies in the realm of technology, media and telecommunications (TMT).

Thus far, the cybersecurity sector has proven an integral part of KKR’s investment approach to the fund, which also targets enterprise software, fintech, and consumer internet companies. The NGT Fund has delivered returns through the likes of endpoint security software firm Cylance, which was acquired by BlackBerry for $1.4 billion earlier this year, and is a lead investor in British artificial intelligence firm Darktrace, which closed its most recent funding round in September at a $1.65 billion valuation.” 

4. US – P2P


Large online lenders, including Lending Club, Avant and Kabbage, are tightening their reqirements for providing credit ahead of an anticipated recession - according to The Logic.


5. US – AltFi


The TechCrunch looks at latest trends in VC funding for tech companies.