European peer-to-peer lender EstateGuru has officially launched its UK operations with an office in Manchester, and a London office on the horizon.
It intends to start facilitating property-backed loans for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as soon as it is fully approved by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
From its Manchester base, the UK business – branded as ‘EstateGuru Marketplace’ – will fund property and development projects across the North West region before expanding its services across the country.
“EstateGuru Group has an outstanding track record across Europe and one I am confident we can replicate here in the UK,” said Ross Gandy (pictured, left), managing director of EstateGuru Marketplace.
“Our offering is two-fold – not only do we offer an accessible route into real estate for retail investors, and a reliable source of investment for large institutions, but our ability to provide competitive alternative finance options to SME borrowers is absolutely crucial in supporting innovative development projects that ultimately have a positive impact on the region and the local people.”
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The platform has been on an expansion drive in recent months. It now has offices in nine European countries, including Finland, Spain, Portugal, Armenia and Estonia. It recently opened a new office in Berlin, Germany with the aim of financing €215m (£178m) of loans in Germany this year alone.
Marek Pärtel (pictured, right), co-founder and chairman of EstateGuru Group, said that his aim is to make EstateGuru the largest real estate investment platform in Europe by 2025.
“We have seen the demand for financing grow throughout Europe and especially from SME companies who are looking for professional, reliable financing partners with expertise in the sector,” said Pärtel.
“As such, EstateGuru Marketplace office opening in the UK market has came at a perfect time and is another huge step towards reaching EstateGuru Group mission to becoming the largest real estate investment platform in Europe by 2025. We are excited to see the difference that EstateGuru Marketplace can make to the UK property and investment spaces.”
EstateGuru was founded in Estonia in 2015 and it has since funded more than €500m in loans to 3,000 development projects and business plans across Europe.