The leading industry trade group, the Marketplace Lending Association (MLA), announced today that they have added 11 new members. The organization launched in April last year with three members: Lending Club, Prosper and Funding Circle. Today, they now have 14 members including LendIt which has joined as an Associate Member.
Here is the list of new members: Able, Affirm, Avant, Commonbond, Marlette Funding, PeerStreet, ShareStates, StreetShares, Upstart and new Associate Members dv01 and LendIt. So, the MLA has a nice broad cross section of the industry now with consumer, student, small business and real estate business all represented.
This marks a new chapter not just for the MLA but also for the marketplace lending industry. We now have a trade group that is representative of our industry with most of the major industry players that can be a powerful voice for us inside Washington. In 2017 this will be more important than ever with the new OCC Fintech Charter on the table and opposition voices mounting.
My view has always been to support the work of organizations that further the development of the industry. The MLA is clearly doing that and so I have been a supporter of them from day one. Now, that they are getting some traction I am hoping that they will be an effective and unifying voice for our industry.
Here is what Nat Hoopes, the executive director of the MLA, had to say in the official press release:
On behalf of the founding members, I welcome these new members to the Association and I look forward to working with them to advance our mutual public goals both in Washington and in state capitols around the country. As MLA member companies continue to innovate and create new opportunities for borrowers and investors, the MLA will play an important role in sharing data and insights that help educate policy makers on the benefits that these companies bring to consumers, businesses, and our financial system.
Together with this announcement the MLA also sent letters today to the incoming Trump Administration and to the leaders of the new Congress.