Last week, Lendified attended a National Crowdfunding Association (NCFA) event in Toronto, the 2016 Canadian Crowdfunding Summit at MaRS. Lendified sponsored the full-day educational summit, which featured high profile keynote speakers, panel discussions, workshops, entrepreneurial pitches, mentor sessions and exhibitors.
Lendified President, Kevin Clark, was one of the event speakers, participating in a panel entitled: ”The Emergence of Fintech in Lending: What it Means for Banks and Main St.”
The panel discussion was subsequently the topic of a recent Globe and Mail article by David Berman, “Banks taking notice of online lenders, panel told”, which also features excerpts from the talk by Kevin Clark and fellow panelists.
The panel was moderated by Sarah Efron, Small Business Editor at The Globe and Mail, and alongside Lendified also consisted of Tabitha Creighton (CEO/Co-founder, InvestNextDoor) and Jeff Mitelman (CEO, Thinking Capital).
Kevin Clark: The rise of online lenders can make it far easier for small businesses to get the funding the need, when they need it. “The good news is that for a small-business owner, it has never been better,” he said.
The idea of emerging fintechs “disrupting” the traditional banking sector was a key focal point of the discussion. Lendified stressed that Canada’s large banks should take notice of – but not fear – the industry’s recent collective success.
Kevin Clark pointed out that online lenders were simply more nimble than traditional banks, who were facing the “huge task” of developing a fintech culture within centuries-old businesses bogged down with legacy systems. He pointed out that the marriage of tech and finance also appealed to millennials and subsequent generations.
The real beneficiaries in all of this, according to Kevin Clark, are Canadian small business owners who were previously quite underserved by the traditional banking system. The rise of online lenders can make it far easier for small businesses to get the funding the need, when they need it. “The good news is that for a small-business owner, it has never been better,” he said.