Many of us in this industry will be glad to see the last of 2016. It has been a difficult year on many fronts, certainly the most challenging in the industry’s short history. This was the year of the pullback as the rapid growth of the last decade dissipated amid a downturn in investor interest due to missteps at some of the major players. But there was also some good progress made this year as you can see in many of the stories below.
Here are my top 10 most important news stories that we published on Lend Academy in 2016.
It was a very easy choice for the biggest news story of this year. The departure of Lending Club founder and CEO Renaud Laplanche was the most important news story of this past decade. He was the leading figure in the industry. His drive and vision was one of the main reasons not just Lending Club but the entire industry had seen such growth over the previous few years. The news of his departure rocked the industry globally and led to a dismal 2016 for many lending platforms.
There has been talk about a new regulatory structure for marketplace lending since the GAO report way back in 2011. By September it was clear that the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) was going to take the lead here. In early December the head of the OCC, Thomas Curry, announced the plans for a new fintech charter that will launch in 2017. They are currently seeking public comment on this idea until January 15, 2017. This will be a big story to watch in 2017.