Global fintech alignment is essential for economic growth and prosperity, says Chris Hancock, chief executive of Crowd2Fund
PEER-TO-PEER LENDING was established in the UK, but it has gone on to become a major global fintech movement. And according to Chris Hancock, chief executive of P2P platform Crowd2Fund, the UK could now lead the way in promoting the global progression of fintech and financial innovation.
“Having worked in tech all my life and in finance for a lot of it, I have absolutely no doubt that the way forward is financial innovation,” says Hancock. “If people want capitalism, capital is required and P2P lending can provide it.”
The regulators seem to agree. Last year, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) proposed the creation of a Global Financial Innovation Network (GFIN) – an alliance between 11 international financial regulators, with a joint remit to encourage financial innovation across the world.
GFIN is still in its test phase, but one thing has already become clear – the main issue for fintech companies with global ambitions is cross-border regulation.
“It’s absolutely critical globally that we work together with all markets if we want to see progress in a collaborative way,” says Hancock. “And that’s what the GFIN is all about – it’s about getting multiple markets together in this new era to align the regulations, a once in a generation opportunity.”
Crowd2Fund has already made a foray into the Australian market, becoming the first UK firm to use the Fintech Bridge. Hancock hopes that this will mark the beginning of a global expansion for the firm and other fintech companies within a GFIN market.
“I believe the UK is still doing really well when it comes to financial innovation,” says Hancock. “There is an opportunity to take a lead globally in collaboration with US and EU markets.”
By raising the global fintech standards and bringing these regulations into alignment, Hancock hopes that it will become easier for fintech firms – large and small – to trade between different markets which present a great opportunity for Crowd2Fund and other like-minded firms.
Crowd2Fund is now looking for a global investor to help deploy the proven technology across the 11 GFIN markets.
“P2P lending is just a highly efficient way of being able to deploy capital and earn a higher interest rate for people who want to take a little bit of risk,” says Hancock. “Even in a potentially slower economy which is what we’ve been in for 12 months, it’s still a proven strategy.
“If you compare it against the FTSE, for example – if you’d invested in the FTSE you’d be approximately 10 per cent down over the past year, whereas if you compare that against the performance of Crowd2Fund’s loans, you would be between five and 10 per cent up.”
P2P lending has a lot to offer interest-seeking investors, and by making this technology available on a global scale, investors and borrowers alike will be able to increase their pool of opportunities and build a global profile in the process. Crowd2Fund is determined to do its part in bringing the benefits of financial innovation to the masses, sooner rather than later.