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Peer2Peer Finance News | March 30, 2017

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LendingCrowd days away from IFISA launch

LendingCrowd days away from IFISA launch
Suzie Neuwirth

LENDINGCROWD has announced that it is planning to launch its Innovative Finance ISA (IFISA) on Tuesday.

The Edinburgh-based peer-to-peer lender received full Financial Conduct Authority authorisation in November and gained ISA manager status from HMRC in mid-January.

The LendingCrowd IFISA will work differently to the rest of the platform, as the investment is automatically spread across a portfolio of loans to small businesses, which gives investors more diversification.

It is a growth ISA, so it will reinvest capital and interest. LendingCrowd’s chief executive and co-founder Stuart Lunn (pictured) previously told Peer-to-Peer Finance News that there may also be scope for an income-focused product going forward.

LendingCrowd’s IFISA has a target rate of return of six per cent per year. There is a minimum investment of £1,000, up to the current annual ISA limit of £15,240.

“We’re excited about launching the IFISA and see a massive opportunity to position the IFISA between the traditional savings and shares options that currently exist,” said Lunn.

An internal survey of LendingCrowd investors found that 82 per cent already invest in different types of ISAs, with 62 per cent of those planning to transfer these funds into an IFISA. Low cash ISA rates were cited as one factor for investors wishing to transfer their money.

Read more: LendingCrowd tempts new investors with joining bonus

The tax-free wrapper around P2P investments was first mooted by former Chancellor George Osborne in 2015, but most platforms – particularly the larger ones – are still awaiting the regulatory authorisation they need to launch the product.