SocietyOne is a new personal lending platform that is bringing peer to peer (P2P) lending to Australia. The fully-compliant service is letting users forego a trip to the bank by connecting borrowers to investors, directly.
SocietyOne’s platform, ClearMatch, is safe, secure, and entirely online, allowing loan seekers to avoid the sometimes-stuffy and often-unnerving visit to the loan office at the bank. Moreover, SocietyOne is opening up would-be investors to a diversified field of borrowers.
“P2P lending is disrupting the traditional bank controlled personal lending market in countries like the UK and in the US. P2P lending is working in these countries because it offers borrowers access to better rates and provides investors with access to an asset class that has historically generated great returns for banks.
We see no reason why P2P lending cannot shake-up the personal lending market here in Australia in the same way it has internationally,” said Matt Symons, CEO and co-Founder of SocietyOne.
It’s like Napster, only Lars Ulrich won’t get all peeved about it…
SocietyOne is following a trend toward P2P lending that has already proven successful overseas, and is the first such company to hold an Australian Credit License, as well as to employ conventional credit reporting methods.
This adds up to a welcome bit of competition for the banks. And, the platform can really pay off for borrowers and lenders, when compared to the traditional method of going to the bank.
SocietyOne offers consumers up to $30,000 in unsecured funds which are pooled from multiple investors. These investors invest relatively small amounts in an assortment of loans spread across the SocietyOne platform.
In turn, SocietyOne does the leg work of administering the loan, from application through collections. SocietyOne makes money through the collection of a one-time application processing fee from borrowers, as well as a service fee from investors.
Power to the people!
“We believe SocietyOne shows that technology-driven innovation can bring real competition to the Australian retail banking market. The initial reaction to SocietyOne has been overwhelmingly positive and I think most people sense there has to be a better way. We believe that better way is to bypass banks altogether which allows us to offer borrowers a better deal and in doing so open-up a new asset class for investors,” said Matt Symons, CEO of SocietyOne.
It looks like fewer Australians will be making the trip to the bank when they need a personal loan, while more of those with deep pockets will have a new opportunity to diversify their investments. So P2P lending is a win all around, unless you happen to be a banker, of course.