Simple Crowdfunding has resumed peer-to-peer lending, with changes to its business model and a live project for housebuilder Acorn Property Group on its website.
In November 2020, the property investment platform paused its P2P lending activities to focus on equity crowdfunding and credit broking, while conducting an extensive business review.
Atuksha Poonwassie (pictured), managing director of Simple Crowdfunding, said the project with Acorn Property Group is for an initial raise of just over £2m to fund the development of 45 houses. She said she expects at least half of that amount to be funded within three weeks and for the fundraise to close by the end of March, if not sooner.
Simple Crowdfunding has changed its business model slightly following the review, updating its bridging product and streamlining its onboarding process for international investors.
Poonwassie said the platform will launch new products soon and will consider taking second charges on assets rather than just the first charge. It will also consider lending at loan-to-values of up to 85 per cent, a rise from its traditional 70 per cent.
She said Simple Crowdfunding had “engaging and responsive” conversations with the City watchdog when discussing the changes.
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The platform has “quite a few” loans in the pipeline, Poonwassie said, with two set to launch soon. It is also planning to expand into commercial lending and is currently reviewing three opportunities in that space.
“It’s really wonderful to be back,” Poonwassie said.
“We’ve switched back on and changed our business model. We have more products coming and we didn’t make any rate changes. We had a bridging product we didn’t really utilise and just tidied it up in terms of what we’re doing.
“We’ve just started taking investments into P2P loans. We haven’t seen much movement in terms of investors leaving, we’ve seen people asking when we will be providing more P2P loans, which is good.
“We have some very ambitious goals in terms of the business and we think they are very achievable.”
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