The Bankwatch

Tracking the consumer evolution of financial services

Social Lending voted as the future of finance by the banking industry

I have been a bit tardy in reporting this from the other day, but looking at it more carefully, it is a big deal.

Zopa, the online lending and borrowing marketplace where people cut out the banks, has won The Banker Technology Award for 2007 for the Best Internet Project…

Beating off intense competition, Zopa wowed the judging panel – which included banking luminaries such as the CEOs of Lloyds TSB and HSBC and the Head of Citibank – with its technology and approach to personal lending and borrowing.

Source: FirstRung

Points of note:
– the judges are traditional bankers
– the importance the judges placed on the entry into regulated credit agreements. This refers to the credit licenses from the Office of Fair Trading

For me, the key is this comment in this article:

Using a discussion board and a blog it is able to listen and learn from its members, providing an innovative and more efficient marketing model

Traditional banking is very top heavy, with lots of overhead from processes, which all require people. Social Lending represents a beachhead on the shift towards a people oriented approach where the distinctions between employees and customers is much duller, or non-existent.

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Written by Colin Henderson

June 7, 2007 at 17:22

Posted in Social Lending

4 Responses

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  1. Interesting angle, noting that the people we think of as bank employees aren’t really present in a p2p loan system.

    I just wrote an overview of social lending sites that I think you might be interested in. It’s “Small Loans, Big Bucks: The World of Social Lending”:

    If you have time, please leave a comment and let me know what you think.

    Jay Neely, Social Strategist

    Jay Neely

    June 9, 2007 at 02:11

  2. Thanks for stopping by Jay. I already subscribed to your feed, and looking forward to your coverage and insights.


    June 9, 2007 at 11:40

  3. It’s easy to proclaim social lending as the future of finance, based on social networking broadly. But have we proven that the average person wants to be a lender, too. A borrower? Certainly. But a lender? I am not convinced, yet. I am convinced, however, that some form of the social web will be applied to banking to incredible, industry-altering results. Now that’s going to be a show worth watching.

    JJ Hornblass

    June 12, 2007 at 20:51

  4. JJ, take a peak at what’s going on with Prosper. Prosper’s user base is very loyal and a number of blogs are up that should provide you with some interesting data!

    Here are some terms to google:

    Lending Statistics
    Unofficial Loan Data And Statistics
    Unofficial Prosper Loan Stats
    A Primer for Prosper – Advice for potential borrowers.
    Prosper Analytics — Prosper Lender Blog

    P.S Great Post Colin!



    June 20, 2007 at 22:51

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