Peer-to-Peer Lending Platform Harmoney Appoints Chairman
Rob Campbell takes role of founding Chairman
Auckland, 20 May 2014
New Peer to Peer Lender Harmoney today announced the appointment of Rob Campbell as its founding chairman. Campbell’s current directorships include Somerset, Tourism Holdings and Localist. He recently retired as Chairman of Guinness Peat Group (GPG) having completed the divestment mandate.
Peer to Peer lending and other forms of crowd funding were enabled in New Zealand by the Financial Markets Conduct Act which came into effect on 1 April. Peer to Peer Lending, described by The Economist* as ‘banking without the banks’, provides consumer finance by matching investors and borrowers on an automated online platform and is growing at 200% pa in the USA and Europe.
Harmoney Chief Executive Neil Roberts says Harmoney is delighted to announce the appointment. “Banking without the banks essentially means we are taking a traditional proven and highly profitable product category and opening it up to the investing public through technology. Rob Campbell’s previous experience as a director of Bank of New Zealand, and past chairman of BNZ Finance and of the investment committee of New Zealand’s largest fund manager, ACC, will help guide us in taking Harmoney’s offer to market,” Roberts says.
Campbell states two key reasons for accepting the role. First, New Zealanders have limited places to invest in fixed interest investments so the advent of Peer to Peer lending means that, for the first time, this 100 year old asset class will be made available to the public with retail rates of return. Second, the Harmoney team has a proven New Zealand track record in this space as the core team that started the consumer finance business for listed company Pacific Retail Group, achieving $1.5b in sales over five years before the finance business was sold to GE Money.
Harmoney is currently applying for an operating license through the Financial Markets Authority and expects to begin trading later this year. Further board appointments will be announced in the next month.
*The Economist, March 2014
For more information:
Julien Leys, PR Partners, +64 21 655 598