Toronto-based Internet company CommunityLend Inc., recently announced the launch of Canada’s only online peer-to-peer lending system after over two years of regulatory consultation and platform development.
Peer-to-peer (p2p) lending is an international financial services innovation which cuts out the traditional “middlemen” in lending transactions, such as banks and credit card companies, by facilitating the direct matching of borrowers to investors through online loan auctions. Peer-to-peer lending has been called “game-changing” by financial industry analyst Javelin Research1 and has also been recognized by the Harvard Business Review in their 2009 List of “Breakout Ideas”.
“Consumer lending has been a major driver of the Canadian banking industry’s profitability for many years" noted Michael Garrity, Co-Founder and CEO of CommunityLend Inc, “and yet has been virtually unavailable as a direct investment opportunity for private investors. Peer-to-peer lending removes the structural obstacles which prevent private investors from investing directly in consumer loans and provides the potential for a better deal for both sides.”
“By allowing borrowers the ability to connect directly with lenders through a safe and secure online lending system,” said Garrity, “we expect borrowers to get better rates for their loans through price competition while also providing eligible Canadian investors, starting with Accredited Investors, direct access to Canada’s consumer credit market as an investment category. It’s a win for everyone concerned.”
According to Garrity, the CommunityLend online peer-to-peer lending system aims to satisfy three essential market needs in Canada:
- Helping Canadian borrowers to get better rates on loans by creating real competition for their loan requests.
- Giving Canadian investors (starting with Accredited Investors) the opportunity to directly participate in Canada’s large consumer credit market as an investment category.
- Providing real communities the opportunity to positively influence the lending process for their members by highlighting their collective needs and responsibility.
As of today, the CommunityLend online peer-to-peer lending service is available in the Provinces of Ontario and Quebec at www.communitylend.com. The company intends to add more provinces in the future.
About CommunityLend Inc
CommunityLend Inc. is Canada’s only peer to peer lending service, a financial services innovation which allows borrowers to cut out banks and credit card companies and to connect directly with lenders through open online loan auctions. Called “game changing” by financial industry analysts3, this new lending model permits direct investment by eligible investors in the personal lending market, previously largely the preserve of financial institutions. CommunityLend Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of CommunityLend Holdings Inc., a Canadian corporation based in Toronto, ON. CommunityLend Inc. is registered as a Portfolio Manager and an Exempt Market Dealer in the provinces of Ontario, and Quebec.
For more information please contact Colin Henderson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. Javelin Research 2008, http://www.javelinstrategy.com/2008/01/07/at-last-a-bank-of-your-own/
2 HBR 2009 http://hbr.harvardbusiness.org/web/2009/hbr-list/forget-citibank-borrow-from-bob