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Updated: Mar 9, 2016
Former Executive Board Member of the European Central Bank joins board of leading global marketplace for business loans
Funding Circle, the world’s leading online marketplace for small business loans, today announced former Executive Board Member of the European Central Bank (ECB), Jörg Asmussen, will join the Funding Circle board.
Today’s announcement marks another important step for Funding Circle as it strengthens its leadership position in marketplace lending globally. Since 2010, more than $2 billion has been lent by investors at Funding Circle to more than 15,000 businesses — creating an estimated 60,000 new jobs in the UK, continental Europe and the US.
Samir Desai, CEO and co-founder of Funding Circle, said: “Our vision at Funding Circle is to build the global exchange where small businesses access the finance they need directly from a diverse group of investors. The last 12 months have seen a number of successes for our business, including growth into continental Europe. I am delighted Jörg is joining our team to share with us his experience and expertise and join us on this exciting journey.”
Jörg Asmussen, a German economist and policymaker has held numerous high-profile positions within the public sector. From 2012 to 2013 he served as Executive Board Member of the European Central Bank (ECB), and from 2008 to 2012 he was State Secretary at the German Ministry of Finance, responsible for European Affairs and Financial Markets. During that time, he was also chairman of the financial regulator BaFin as well as G7 and G20 Deputy. He was also involved in dealing with the economic crisis across the Eurozone, working closely with the Greek, Spanish, Irish and Portuguese governments. Most recently, he was State Secretary for the German Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (2014 to 2015).
Jörg Asmussen, non-executive Director of Funding Circle, said: “I am pleased to join Funding Circle’s Board. The company operates at the frontier of innovation in financial services, providing business loans to small businesses in a transparent, simple and efficient manner, thereby helping to finance growth and create jobs — and providing a financially sound alternative for investors. I am impressed by the high professionalism of the management team of Funding Circle and the soundness of the company’s operations throughout the whole value chain.”
Matthias Knecht, co-founder and Managing Director of Funding Circle Continental Europe, said: “Jörg is one of Germany’s most respected economists and has spent a lifetime shaping government and central banking. As we accelerate our growth across Europe, his experience in European regulation and unique insights into the challenges faced by small businesses will be an invaluable asset. We are excited that Jörg shares our passion to help small businesses access affordable finance and look forward to transforming the financial industry together.”
Funding Circle (www.fundingcircle.com) is the world’s leading online marketplace for business loans, matching small businesses who want to borrow with investors who want to lend in the UK, the US and across Europe. Since launching in 2010, investors at Funding Circle — including 50,000 individuals, financial institutions and the UK Government — have now invested more than $2 billion in 15,000 businesses, and currently lend $150 million per month. Funding Circle was the first marketplace to announce a formal referral partnership with Santander, one of the UK’s leading high street banks, and has since announced a similar partnership with RBS. It has raised $273m in equity capital from the same investors that backed Facebook, Twitter, Airbnb and Wealthfront.
Notes to editor Nesta’s ‘Banking on Each Other’ report in 2013 found that an average Funding Circle borrower employs ~3 new people within 12 months of taking a loan.