Tuesday 3 December 2019 3:39 pm

Zopa secures last-minute £140m injection

Zopa has secured a £140m cash injection that will help the peer-to-peer lending giant meet regulatory capital requirements to become a bank.

The fintech firm has been in talks to secure a major lifeline with an entity connected to US-based private investment firm IAG Capital Partners and its UK arm Silverstripe.

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The investment is subject to final approvals, including regulatory change of control.

The agreement comes on the same day as Zopa’s banking licence-with-restrictions expires a year on from being granted.

Zopa continues to hold its banking licence with restrictions and is working with the regulator to obtain its full licence, the firm said.

Chief executive Jaidev Janardana said: “This new funding means we have concluded the fundraising phase of our bank mobilisation. Definitive agreements to provide the funding have been finalised and are subject to final approvals including regulatory change of control.”

Insiders told Sky News last week that the funding had been negotiated at a steep discount when compared with Zopa’s most recent capital-raising in 2018.

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The move, which would reportedly give IAG Capital a majority stake in Zopa, would help the fintech group in its goal of becoming a challenger in Britain’s banking sector.

The scramble for funding at Zopa, which allows lenders and borrowers to deal directly with one another, comes amid increasing investor caution over the “P2P” industry.