Forbes

FUNDING CIRCLE

PEER-TO-PEER BUSINESS LENDING IPO: SEPTEMBER 2018 MARKET VALUE LOSS: $1.5 BILLION

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Funding Circle was conceived over pints in a London pub by a former management consultant named Samir Desai, 36, during the financial crisis. As with LendingClu­b, the idea was to match borrowers—in this case small businesses—with institutio­nal investors on the internet. Funding Circle listed on the London Stock Exchange in September 2018, raising nearly $400 million at a value of $2 billion.

That was the high point. Within nine months the company cut its revenue growth target by half, citing reduced demand for its loans and a proactive effort to “further tighten” lending to riskier businesses. Its stock has plunged by 77% in just over a year.

“Funding Circle is talking about not making a profit until 2022– 23,” says Russ Mould of British broker AJ Bell. “People lose faith.”

 ??  ?? CEO Samir Desai
CEO Samir Desai

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