LFP038 – Highlights from Lendit 2015 Europes Largest P2P Conference with Peter Renton

The road goes on forever - next Lendit already teed-up.

The road goes on forever – the next Lendit is already lined-up

I am delighted to be joined by Peter Renton to discuss some key highlights from the Lendit Europe 2015 conference, especially for those of you who weren’t there and even for those of you who were as in the afternoon it split into two streams.

Peter Renton PhotoPeter was back on the show in LFP015 way back in last December wearing his Lend Academy hat relating to us the amazing story of the development of P2P in the US – something he saw from it’s very origins when it was scarcely noticed.

Today he is joining me wearing his Lendit Conference hat. Lendit now runs by far the world’s largest P2P conferences – some 2,500 in Lendit US 2015, 500 in Lendit China 2015 and yesterday around 750 in Lendit Europe.

In this episode we have an off-the-cuff conversation about what leaps out to us as the really interesting things happening in P2P in Europe right now.  It’s a great way to get up the curve fast and we discuss a wide range of topics:

– the story of the Lendit conference – from original idea through to global domination in just two years and the important entrepreneurial lessons and steps along the way

– Lendit also have an excellent policy of allowing online viewing at the time for free and make available videos of the presentations (also for free) – highly praiseworthy! 🙂

– Funding Circle’s landmark purchase of Zencap making them now the undisputed global leader operating in five countries worldwide

– Oligopolisation – Rupert Taylor’s presentation The Impact of Institutional Investors – What Does the Data Tell Us? showing, inter alia, that the top-three are pulling away in terms of increasing their market share as well as the returns at a detailed level within the industry

– Who would have spotted TrustBuddy in advance? Varying standards of due diligence by institutional investors in P2P and historical precedents

– Regulation in #oldFS and #newFS and associated doubletalk. The question isn’t “do we need regulation?” but “what kind of regulation do we need?”

– Institutional capital as being reintermediation and the new funds to be launched by P2Ps (eg zero-fee (?) ~ETF by Funding Circle and LendInvest’s rumoured fund) as anti-reintermediation

– diversity of funding in P2P – will institutions eventually crowd out the retail investor?

– can institutions outperform given the improvement in pricing algorithms by the P2Ps? (&Rupert Taylor’s presentation above contains data in re)

Cormac Leech’s presentation “3hours compressed into 20minutes” – a whole host of must-know points as well as speculation (Europe to overtake the UK?) and advice for the Bank of England 🙂

– We discuss the Risk in Alternative Finance panel session that I chaired – whilst good on qualitative risk P2Ps still find it very hard to come up with a clear and simple quantification of what the risk to investors is. Is this related to the fact that growth in retail funds (as per Cormac’s presentation) is coming in terms of more from the same people rather than a great expansion of the retail investor base

– We discuss simple ways of communicating risk and I learn that Lending Club have already implemented one of my key proposals [a button whcih shows the risk of a new investment in terms of the range of likely returns]

– a look forward to Lendit USA in 2016 which is expected to have 4,000 attendees and China and Europe 2016

And much more 🙂