Last year at LendIt 2013 we featured a number of P2P lending start-ups in our exhibit area in order to learn about the next new thing. There was one company in particular that had a great mission and a great story that we were excited to feature. This company was called Funding Community (we wrote about their launch here).
Their mission was to develop a small business P2P lending platform so that the local community could fund their local businesses. In exchange, the small businesses provided deals and discounts to their lenders, who often became their most loyal customers. We loved their local social ecosystem approach, which gets to the essence of what makes peer-to-peer lending so amazing. They made it personal and supportive.
So it came with great disappointment when we heard that Funding Community was shutting down. But the story is not over. Not only has Funding Community bought-out all outstanding loans to make their lenders whole, but also one of their co-founders, Alex Binkley, has decided to write a post-mortem to share his lessons on the successes and failures of his venture. Funding Community is showing us how to fail with class, dignity, and honor. It takes courage to publicly speak about a failure and we applaud him for that. We can all learn from his lesson.
Here are my lesson’s learned after reading this story: