The Alternative Finance Revolution
Date: Thursday 25 May
Time: 2pm to 3pm
Fintech involves the application of Big Data analytics and a technology-based model to virtually all areas of traditional finance. Examples include new approaches to banking (challenger banks) and digital currencies such as blockchain. One of its most exciting and successful developments is known as alternative finance in the UK and as-for-profit crowdfunding in the USA and Europe. Alternative finance provides novel sources of external funding to private (non-listed) small businesses or SMEs that have been poorly served by the traditional financial system especially after the banking and financial crisis in 2008-09.
The UK is the world leader in alternative finance due to a combination of technological innovation and a light touch approach to regulation. The two most developed areas are peer-to-peer (P2P) business loans and equity crowdfunding. The former involves individuals and institutions funding loans to private SMEs via P2P marketplaces such as Funding Circle, LendInvest and Zopa. These accounted for 14% of new lending to UK small businesses in 2015. The latter enables SMEs to raise early and later stage (pre-IPO) equity capital from individual investors as well as business angels and others via platforms such as Crowdcube, Seedrs and Syndicate Room.
In this webinar Professor Jerry Coakley, Professor at the Essex Business School and Deputy Director of the Business and Local Government Data Research Centre, will analyse the alternative finance phenomenon and argue that it marks the beginning of a revolution in the financing of small businesses in the UK.