Europe latches on to peer-to-peer lending and crowdfunding

Adam Hignett
EUROPE is embracing the concept of alternative finance as the ongoing fallout of the credit crunch sparks a flourish of industry start-ups, a report published by Cambridge University and Ernst & Young says today.

The UK dominates the industry and increased its share the market in alternative finance to 79 per cent. The online alternative finance market in Europe as a whole grew by 144 per cent last year to nearly €3bn and is predicted to top €7bn in 2015. European SMEs have increasingly turned to alternative finance to fill the void after credit provision through more traditional methods has become ever harder to obtain since the financial crisis struck in 2007.

While the UK has set the pace, the report predicts that the mainland European market will see increased growth and mature in the coming years after seeing average growth of 115 per cent for the past three years when the UK is excluded.