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Thursday 08 November 2018

Zopa banks another £16m to become a bank

logoSticking with the banking theme for a mo' (see Lloyds puts thought – and dosh – into Thought Machine), we bring you news hot off the press that UK P2P (peer-to-peer) lending startup Zopa has just closed the final phase of August's £44m funding round (see Zopa taps market for another £44m) adding a further £16m to the pot. Both existing and new backers were reportedly involved. Founded in 2005, this brings the total raised by Zopa to date to some $190m (Source: CrunchBase).

The funding will be used to pursue Zopa's ambition to become a fully-fledged bank. This ambition has hit the startup's bottom line. Whereas the core P2P lending business (Zopa Ltd) turned in a net profit of £1.45m last year on revenues of £46.4m, the nascent banking arm (Zopa Financial Services Ltd) recorded a £4m net loss, of course not surprising being in development phase. As far as I can tell, Zopa has yet to receive its UK banking license.

Whereas Zopa seems to have made a success of its lending business, it will go into battle against a broad range of banks, both 'next generation' startups as well as legacy players. How well Zopa can differentiate itself in the UK banking market and make a profit will be the issue.

Posted by Anthony Miller at '09:17' - Tagged: funding   startup   FinTech  

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