IOU central launched the first active p2p lending service in Canada today. Borrowers can request loans from 1,000 to 25,000 CAN$ and select a term between 1 and 36 months. IOU central allows the borrower to specify a minimum amount at which he will accept the loan, should it not fully fund in the 2 weeks listing duration. IOU Central pulls the TransRisk credit score of the borrower, provided by Transunion Canada. According to the press release, lenders can expect to earn interest rates between 5 and 25 percent.
Borrowers pay a closing fee ranging from 1 to 3 percent depending on their credit score. Lenders pay an annual servicing fee of 0.5 percent of the open principal balance. Only Canadian residents can borrow or lend. The borrower needs to have a Trans union credit score.
Borrowers may have several loans, but the total outstanding principal may not exceed 25,000 CAN$.
Lenders earn interest on deposited money (bank prime rate minus 2.5%). Individuals may lend up to 5 million CAN$. Corporations may lend up to 50 million CAN$. Minimum bid amount is 25 CAN$.
Studying the team of IOU Central I noticed Robert Bialek (VP Technology) and Arkadiusz Hajduk (Product Manager), which were the founders of FairRates.dk, a p2p lending service in Denmark, which now is part of IOU Central. An assumption would be that IOU Central acquired (or merged with) the company, to gain the knowledge and experience made.
The IOU Central launch did beat Communitylend in being first in the Canadian market. Communitylend has long announced to launch a Canadian peer to peer lending service, but has not launched yet.
To discuss IOU central, the lending or borrowing experience or to ask questions on the service you can use Wiseclerk's IOU Central forums.