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Peer2Peer Finance News | November 23, 2017

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F&P steps up green energy focus by poaching ex-Merrill Lynch director

F&P steps up green energy focus by poaching ex-Merrill Lynch director
Anna Brunetti

PEER-TO-PEER funding specialist F&P has hired a green energy consultant to boost its business in that borrower market, ahead of its possible lending platform launch this summer.

The firm, which finds P2P lending partners for small borrowers and advises both parties through the funding process, brought former Merrill Lynch investment manager and director Edward Williams (pictured) on board as it looks to increase its focus on the clean and renewable energy borrower sector.

Williams brings 25 years of experience in investment, including 11 years spent at Merrill Lynch International. He held roles including head of equity derivatives and convertible bond sales and co-head of equity linked products for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

He specialises on development and growth finance for green energy companies, a sector that is currently facing the challenge of falling government subsidies amidst budget cuts and energy policy changes.

“Edward’s specialist focus on clean and green technology provides our business with a significant opportunity for expansion in what is a fast moving and growing industry,” said F&P’s director and co-founder Ivor Freedman.

Read more: Assetz has lent £30m to green energy projects

The firm has so far teamed up with other P2P players such as ThinCats to provide about £100m of finance to over 250 borrowers among small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), small property developers and green energy projects, but recently told Peer2Peer Finance News it was considering setting up its own platform to become a fully-fledged P2P lender.

“Employing highly experienced professionals will help us to increase our exposure in niche markets that typically have high initial capital expenditures and risks that remove the option of lending via traditional methods,” Freedman said about the new hire.

The company recently arranged funding for BioDynamic UK, a firm it said was rejected 25 times by traditional lenders.

F&P secured the £1.5m required by the borrower to fund an anaerobic digestion plant in two weeks, by listing it on a P2P lending platform, it said.

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