ZOPA has raised £44m in the first stage of a new fundraising round, in the latest sign that the peer-to-peer lender is preparing to go public.
Earlier this year, reports suggested that Zopa was in aiming to raise £50m ahead of a stock market flotation, a figure which would value the company at £400m.
Read more: Zopa back in the black after “landmark” year
While Zopa has not commented on the IPO speculation, the platform did confirm that this new £44m investment will be used to help the platform launch its new digital bank and fuel the expansion of its business.
“We aim to be the best place for money in the UK and we believe that launching our bank is a key next step,” said Jaidev Janardana (pictured), chief executive of Zopa. “It allows us to offer a wider choice of products and to help our customers make smarter choices with their money.
“This further injection of capital takes us a step closer to that vision and we are delighted that our investors have supported us on this journey.”
Zopa was the first P2P lender to launch in 2005, and since then it has lent more than £3.5bn to UK consumers. In 2017 Zopa achieved full year profitability for the first time since 2012. In the same year, the platform earned more than £100m through investments in its Innovative Finance ISA.
Read more: Time is ripe for first P2P IPO