AltFi News - 08.02.19

The latest news from the world of Alternative Finance and FinTech
In the news this week
UK Bond Network shut its doors this week. The P2P platform closed on Monday following a surprise notice on its website, although there is a suggestion that there may be another firm involved as well as a new strategy. The notice read: “Following a recent acquisition of another company, the business will be shifting its focus to new services, with a new management team now in place." In other news, online business finance aggregator, Funding Options, is expanding into Europe after partnering with a Dutch banking group, while Goji has seen its IFISA transfers soar after adding five new lenders.
UK Bond Network
P2P firm shuts platform



The UK Bond Network, a p2p platform for corporate bonds, is closing as of today Monday 4 February 2019, according to the firm. A notice on the website of the UKBN platform shows it is no longer active. Details are scant but there is a suggestion from the page that there may be another firm involved as well as a new strategy to be announced but the message is clear that UKBN will stop trading. (AltFi)
Funding Options
Funding Options partners with Dutch banking group for Netherlands expansion
Online business finance marketplace Funding Options is expanding in Europe with a launch in the Netherlands. Working in partnership with Dutch banking group ING, the firm will help SMEs in the country source alternative finance ranging from £1,000 to £10m. (Bdaily)
Goji platform adds five new lenders as IFISA transfers soar
Goji has added five new lenders to its platform over the past month, bringing its total number of direct lending investment managers to 25. Earthworm, Dot Fund, Route Finance, Growth Capital Ventures and Bird Box Bonds have all signed up to the direct lending investment platform since January 2019, and at least 10 other lenders are hoping to join by the end of the tax year. (P2P Finance News)
What we’ve seen in Search
Searches for investments are up 49% compared to this time last year.
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FreeAgent to offer accounting software feed through Open Banking
Innovative fintech company FreeAgent has become the first UK accounting software to offer direct bank feeds via the Open Banking platform - giving customers even greater security and visibility over their business finances. (Finextra)
UK accountancy network teams up with fintech funder
The Corporate Finance Network (CFN), a UK network of independent regional accountancy firms, has announced a national partnership with online lending broker, which will enable member firms to access the funding platform when working with their SME clients to source finance. (Accountancy Daily)
Stat of the Week
85 per cent of last year’s fraud instances were related to investments in shares, bonds, forex and cryptocurrencies run by firms that are not authorised by the FCA
JPMorgan invests in UK fintech Smart Pension
JPMorgan has taken a minority stake in UK workplace pension provider Smart Pension. The investment by the asset management arm of the big Wall Street bank comes just months after Smart Pension won an international competitive tender to deliver a pensions technology platform for New Ireland Assurance, one of Ireland’s leading life insurance, pensions and investment businesses. (Finextra)
British startups hit by funding drop last year as fintech bucks the trend
The amount of money pumped into Britain’s startups slipped in 2018, but fintech and blockchain investment provided a silver lining. Funding into the UK’s young companies dropped from 2017’s record high of £8.6bn to £7bn last year, according to data published today by Beauhurst. (City A.M.)
Tweet of the Week
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