When it comes to investing in the marketplace lending space, many individual investors have relied on various tools to help direct their investments. The two most popular tools for investors are NSR Invest, a sister company to Lend Academy and LendingRobot. For many years the companies competed for the same customers, offering slightly different solutions to their investor base. Today it was announced that the two companies are merging with Lend Core LLC (parent company to NSR Invest) acquiring Algorithmic, Inc which includes LendingRobot and all of its assets. The resulting company will be the largest robo-advisor in marketplace lending.
I spoke with Emmanuel Marot, co-founder and CEO of LendingRobot and Bo Brustkern, co-founder and CEO of NSR Invest to learn more about the deal. The combined company will have more than 8000 clients and $150 million in assets under management. Combined, the platforms see more than 20 sign ups per day. Brustkern will be leading the new entity as CEO and Marot will continue as a special advisor to the combined entity.
Bo Brustkern stated:
We are excited about joining forces and providing a unified solution. We used to compete, but the companies are now aligned. Being one team puts us in a better position for the future and solidifies our position in the market.
For now, NSRInvest.com and LendingRobot.com will operate separately, but the team aims to combine the best of what each platform has to offer. Brustkern and Marot stated that they plan to streamline the investment fund offerings for accredited investors with the LendingRobot Series fund being the focus going forward. We covered LendingRobot’s launch of this fund offering earlier this year. Both agreed that the flexibility and simplicity of the Series offering make it a compelling option for investors.
For self-directed investors including non-accredited investors, both LendingRobot Classic and NSR Invest’s offering will continue to be offered. LendingRobot Classic is for individuals who value simplicity while NSR Invest is for those who like to backtest and create their own investment criteria. Both self-directed options are 45 bps, NSR Invest’s fully managed option is 60 bps, and the LendingRobot Series fund charges a 1% fee.
While the merged company will continue to serve individual investors, they are open to institutional investors to help guide investments into alternative lending. Brustkern stated that they will be much better positioned going forward to address the needs of larger investors.
As any new industry matures consolidation is inevitable. In this case, the two leaders are merging to create the largest registered investment advisor serving retail investors in marketplace lending. It ensures the future of options for the retail investor, something that we at Lend Academy believe is important for the industry. Both Brustkern and Marot were happy to announce that the new entity will be profitable. Once the two firms are integrated, they plan to explore other opportunities to serve investors.
The support team is happy to answer any questions investors may have either in the comments section or via email.