Alternative Finance in Italy

BNP Paribas is planning to originate €1bn | AltFin workshops in Budapest, Milan and Bratislava


Last week I was in Milan to give a key-note lecture on European trends in alternative finance at the presentation of the latest crowd investing numbers of Italy (€153m in last 12 months). In this newsletter I will focus on some of the highlights of the conference and we take a deeper look into the status of Alternative Finance in Italy with Giancarlo Giudici

The newsletter also includes an invitation to participate in one of the validation sessions of Altfinator in Budapest, Milan and Bratislava.

This is the last edition before my holiday. The following newsletter will be send on August 13. 

Further news this week:

  • Crowdinvesting in Italy raises €153m in last 12 months
  • BNP Paribas is planning to originate €1bn to SMEs per year
  • Fintech companies originated 36% of all personal loans in 2017 
  • Validation workshops Budapest, Milan and Bratislava

Crowdinvesting in Italy raises €153m in last 12 months

Research from Osservatorio crowd-investing at Politecnico di Milano shows that the Italian crowd investing market is growing really fast. In the last couple of years €249 million was raised in the market, with €153 million raised in the last 12 months and €109 million in the first 6 months of 2018.

My presentation can be seen/downloaded here.

The full report with all details of the Italian crowd investing market can be downloaded here.

BNP Paribas is planning to originate €1bn to SMEs per year

Research from Osservatorio crowd-investing at Politecnico di Milano shows that the Italian crowd investing market is growing really fast. In the last couple of years €249 million was raised in the market, with €153 million raised in the last 12 months and €109 million in the first 6 months of 2018.

My presentation can be seen/downloaded here.

The full report with all details of the Italian crowd investing market can be downloaded here.

BNP Paribas is planning to originate €1bn to SMEs per year

In an interview to AltFi Stéphane Blanchoz, Head of SME Alternative Financing, discusses the ambition of BNP Paribas’ Asset Management to originate €1bn to SMEs per year in Europe with at least €400m from the UK. 

Not just a platform

The initiative is not just another online platform, but a collaboration/franchise with existing platforms (such as Caple where they invested in) and a group of 50 direct lending specialists. 

Expanding to The Netherlands and Germany

In September the platform will launch in the Netherlands with plans for a subsequent launch in Germany as well as other European countries in 2019.

Fintech companies originated 36% of all personal loans in 2017

According to a report discussed in Bloomberg, online lending has grown impressively in the past seven years. Quoting data from TransUnion, the article describes that Fintech firms originated 36% of all personal loans in 2017 compared to under 1% in 2010.

LendingClub said in a filing that personal-loan originations in the first quarter soared 20 percent from a year earlier to $2.1 billion.

But the online lending has changed dramaticly in the past few years. Early on, it was dominated by just a few names – the innovative trailblazers. Today, there are a whole squadron of online lenders and banks are moving into the sector recognizing that the future of their business is digital and mobile. 

Validation workshops Budapest, Milan and Bratislava

The Altfinator project (supported by the European Commission) will improve the access to alternative financing in Europe with focus on SE and CEE countries. Alternative financing has increased considerably in recent years. However, access to AF varies considerably across Europe with Southern, Central and Eastern European regions lagging behind Northern and Western European regions.

Transfer best practices

To bridge this gap, the Altfinator project will facilitate the transfer of best practices from more advanced to less advanced markets. 

The initial target countries are Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece, Lithuania, Latvia, Slovakia, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Hungary, Romania, Ukraine, Croatia, Bulgaria, Serbia, Moldova, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania and Macedonia.

Validation workshops to validate capacity building strategy

During the first phase of this project, these plans are developed. In September several validation workshops will be organized to discuss with local participants the best way to implement the capacity-building strategy and implementation plan, which includes the main steps to improve the access to alternative financing options in the target countries. 

Budapest, Milan and Bratislava

During the 3 validation group co-creation workshops, to be organised in Budapest, Milan and Bratislava, in September, 2018, altogether 50 stakeholders (including experts, multipliers and end-users of alternative financing) will be involved, representing the listed countries. The workshops will comprise sessions with participants from multiple countries for settling the strategic approach and define the country-specific elements of the strategy.

For more information about the validation group co-creation workshops or participation please contact:

Expert of the week : Giancarlo Giudici (Italy)

What is the current status of Alternative Finance?

The size of the market for alternative finance is growing each year in Italy. 

Italy introduced several innovations to boost alternative finance, after the Global financial crisis :

Equity crowdfunding : introduced a new law in 2012; first opened to innovative startups, then extended to innovative SMEs and now to all SMEs.

P2P lending / social lending : new frameword under the payment agents’ discipline.

Mini-bonds : less tight regulation for small issuers.

Direct lending : non-banking entities like funds and insurance companies allowed to lend to companies.

Can you give us an inspiring case from your country?

While crowdfunding is still behind, compared to EU competitors, we think the industry of mini-bonds is an interesting case.

Italy decided to allow only institutional investors to subscribe bonds issues by non-listed SMEs. We think this is good (Germany had troubles with many defaults).

Securitization deals have also been implemented, to ‘package’ issues from different SMEs and reach an international audience. Credit enhancement from EIB/EIF has been granted.

What are the biggest obstacles for growth?

The biggest obstacle is the absence of a framework for secondary markets for crowd-funded companies. At the moment crowdfunding investors have to spend large transaction fees when selling to someone else.

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Author

Stefan von Imhof

Stefan von Imhof

As the CEO of Alts, Stefan lives and breathes alternative asset analysis and valuations. His alternative investing newsletter has grown into Alts.co — the world's largest alt investing community, with over 200,000 investors. His favorite alternative investments are holiday rentals, cash-flowing websites, and especially his collection of 300 vinyl records. Originally from Boston and Santa Barbara, CA, he now lives with his wife in Australia.

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