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Orchard building out the online lending ecosystem

When I profiled Orchard back in February, the company was just a few months old and fresh off a $2.7 million funding round. But that wasn’t your typical seed round—Orchard attracted the likes of Vikram Pandit, the former CEO of Citigroup and Tom Glocer, the former CEO of Reuters as investors in that round.

While that was impressive, today they have announced a $12 million funding round from a group of A-list players in our industry. These are people with deep histories and intimate knowledge of the inner workings of p2p lending. But before I get to that, a quick primer for those of you who don’t know Orchard.

Orchard Platform traces its roots back to the LendIt Conference in 2013 where co-founders Matt Burton and Angela Ceresnie presented on some of the challenges facing p2p investors. This led them to create the first company devoted to providing the infrastructure that connects institutional investors with loan originators. They started with Lending Club and Prosper and now connect multiple platforms to their growing investor client base. They provide institutional investors with real-time trading and reporting, investment strategy, data analysis as well as access to loan supply.

I caught up with Orchard CEO Matt Burton earlier today to discuss this new funding round and the names that participated.

“We went out trying to get one or two big names into this round,” said Burton. “We had more interest than we expected and we ended up with many big names.”

Who are These New Investors in Orchard?

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New York Stock Exchange Lending Club IPO

Today, Lending Club released an updated S-1 filing for its upcoming IPO. In this document is the long awaited confirmation that Lending Club will be reserving shares in their IPO for retail investors.

This is something that has been hinted about before and when I interviewed Lending Club CEO Renaud Laplanche recently on the Lend Academy Podcast he indicated that was their intention. But this is the first time that we have seen hard evidence that this will actually happen. There is a “Directed Share Program” section buried deep in the S-1 that provides this information (emphasis is mine):

At our request, the underwriters have reserved % of the shares of common stock offered by this prospectus for sale, at the initial public offering price, to our directors, officers, employees, investors that have invested through our marketplace as of September 30, 2014 and other individuals related to us. Shares purchased by our directors and officers will be subject to a 180-day lock-up restriction. The number of shares of common stock available for sale to the general public will be reduced to the extent these individuals purchase such reserved shares. Any reserved shares that are not so purchased will be offered by the underwriters to the general public on the same basis as the other shares offered by this prospectus.

While we have no idea what percentage they are reserving it is pretty clear that some shares will be available to retail investors come IPO time. I reached out to Lending Club today for more details but not surprisingly they had no comment. Rest assured you will hear about it on Lend Academy as soon as more information is made available.

Lending Club Will Be Listed on the NYSE With Ticker Symbol “LC”

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Peer to Peer Lending News Roundup – October 18, 2014

October 18, 2014

During the week I share the latest p2p lending news on Twitter as it happens. Then every Saturday I take the most interesting news items and blog posts from the past week and share them here. Short Term Small Business Lending: The Sweet Spot for Investors? from AltFi – I love small business and I also think [...]

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SolarCity Launches SolarBonds Offering Investors a 4% Return

October 16, 2014

SolarCity is the largest installer of solar panels for residential homes. According to their press release yesterday they provide one out of every three solar systems installed in the U.S. To date they have installed around $5 billion worth of solar panels in 15 states and the money for this has been raised from large [...]

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Update on LendIt Europe in London

October 14, 2014

We are now just over a month away from the LendIt Europe conference in London on November 17 and I want to give everyone an update. This is our first European event that builds on the success of the first two LendIt conferences in New York and San Francisco. Registrations are continuing to come in strong. We [...]

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Peer to Peer Lending News Roundup – October 11, 2014

October 11, 2014

During the week I share the latest p2p lending news on Twitter as it happens. Then every Saturday I take the most interesting news items and blog posts from the past week and share them here. Wall Street’s siren song lures P2P lenders into treacherous seas from the Financial Times – This journalist thinks that p2p lending [...]

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SoFi Tops $1 Billion, Expands into Home Mortgages and Announces an IPO

October 8, 2014

This week SoFi announced they have crossed $1 billion in total loans issued, a milestone they achieved in just over two years after issuing their first loan. This makes SoFi the fastest marketplace lending platform to achieve that milestone. While that is a significant achievement, what is more impressive is the fact they have done [...]

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LAP25: Jared Hecht and Brayden McCarthy of Fundera on the Small Business Lending Problem

October 7, 2014

Jared Hecht and Brayden McCarthy are two of the smartest young minds in our industry. They are both executives at Fundera; Jared is the CEO and Co-Founder and Brayden is the Head of Strategy and Policy. Fundera is a platform that helps small business owners evaluate different loan options by providing easy access to these options [...]

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Peer to Peer Lending News Roundup – October 4, 2014

October 4, 2014

During the week I share the latest p2p lending news on Twitter as it happens. Then every Saturday I take the most interesting news items and blog posts from the past week and share them here. Lenders Disrupt U.K. Finance Funding Borrowers Banks Snub from Bloomberg – Excellent in-depth article on Funding Circle and the changing face [...]

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Prosper Issues $172 Million of New Loans in September

October 3, 2014

Prosper closed September with another solid performance. They issued $171.6 million in loans last month up from $167.6 in August which is a 2.4% increase. While this is the smallest percentage increase since their down month in February I should point out that on a dollars issued per business day basis the increase is 12.7% [...]

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