Peer-to-peer lending platform Fellow Finance is now open for borrowers in Germany. Wirecard Bank supports the Finnish FinTech company Fellow Finance to enter and provide a digital infrastructure for the German financial market. Wirecard Bank will place their German full banking license at the Fellow Financeâ€™s disposal and in addition enabling a completely digital credit process.
Under German regulation (KWG) only banks are all allowed to make loans, meaning all p2p lending platforms need to partner with a transaction bank.
It is not a full p2p lending offering as investors cannot invest into the German loans on the platform. And Fellow Finance states in their TOC that they do not advise borrowers regarding the loans. So it looks to be an attempt to capitalize on the reach of the brand. The website for the German market is running on the national domain Fellowfinance.de.
Update: While the German website explicitly states that retail investors cannot invest, the wording might be misleading and actually might mean only that investors need to go through the Finnish site in order to invest. On the Finnish site the ability to filter for German consumer loans and to set up allocators (autoinvest) for German loans is present.
Jouni Hintikka, CEO at Fellow Finance, says: â€œWe are looking forward to working with advanced Wirecard Bank as a co-operation partner in the future. We are proud of the entry into the German market after having already proven our business model in Finland and Poland. This is again one step of making Fellow Finance the biggest consumer and business lending platform in Europe and proves the scalability and flexibility of our platform.â€
Thorsten Holten, Executive Vice President Sales Financial Institution and FinTech Europe, adds: â€œGaining Fellow Finance as a customer means that we can expand on our collaboration in the area of alternative lending with the aid of an international partner. With our expertise in the areas of banking and regulations, we help FinTech companies such as Fellow Finance to enter the market in the best way possible as well as to quickly and easily internationalise their business.â€
In future, Wirecard Bank will support Fellow Finance in the scoring of potential borrowers and carrying out payment transactions. This means that end consumers in Germany will be able to quickly apply and raise a loan in competitive interest rate.
The German market is very competitive and so far p2p lending marketplaces have found out it is not easy to compete with the banks. In Germany Auxmoney is the largest p2p lending marketplace offering consumer loans.