Back in the early days of marketplace lending there was a company called Endurance Lending Network. They were one of the first companies to operate a marketplace for small business loans. Sam Hodges was one of the co-founders of this fledgling business, an entrepreneur who saw a broken system for small business lending and went about trying to fix it.
After Funding Circle bought Endurance Lending in 2013 it was Sam who became the leader of the US business. He has helped guide this business to become the leading marketplace for small business loans in the country, growing to more than $1 billion in total loans funded.
I received an email last week from Sam asking to connect about some news he wanted to share. We chatted earlier today and I learned that after almost 7 years running a small business lending platform he was stepping aside. Taking his place is Bernardo Martinez who, until yesterday, was the head of PayPal’s small business lending arm known as PayPal Working Capital.
This morning I chatted with both Sam and Bernardo to find out the back story and how Bernardo views the business. When I asked Sam the reason for his departure he basically said that the timing was right:
After almost seven years at the helm of this company I felt that the time was right to bring in a new leader. We have just come off our best year ever and business is as good as it has ever been. I have been thinking about this move for about a year and felt like this was the optimal time to effect the transition.