Santander InnoVentures, Santander Group’s fintech venture capital fund, has announced that it is leading the funding round (Series B) of CrossLend, the Berlin-based pan-European digital debt marketplace. The round also includes funding from existing investors Lakestar, ABN AMRO Ventures, and Earlybird.
Founded in 2014, CrossLend provides a digital debt marketplace for consumer, SME, invoices, mortgages and other forms of debt originated by banks and alternative originators. CrossLend makes the assets available to a wide range of institutional investors, such as banks, investment funds and insurance companies.
This allows loan originators to expand their origination capacity and increase income while at the same time it helps to reduce pressure from capital requirements. Institutional investors with the need to invest in fixed-income assets are provided with a broad range of new investable assets in a transferable form. This allows more capital to flow into Europe’s economy and makes the lending and investment ecosystem more efficient, transparent and profitable.
Santander InnoVentures, true to its 'invest and partner' model, is exploring cooperation alleys with the company, as one basis for the investments were the significant cooperation opportunities. In light of the value-add that CrossLend can provide to banks and asset managers, more institutions are expected to join as equity investors over the next few months.
Santander InnoVentures’ investment comes as the European Commission’s capital markets union initiative is set to deliver an action plan by the end of 2019 to provide new sources of funding for businesses, reduce the cost of raising capital, increase options for savers across the EU, facilitate cross-border investment and make the EU financial system more stable, resilient and competitive. CrossLend’s digital debt marketplace infrastructure is closely aligned with core elements of previous EU action plans and already enables pan-European fixed-income investment in the absence of a true capital markets union.
“By developing technology that digitises processes done manually today and building a regulatory infrastructure that allows for a truly pan-European platform, CrossLend is addressing several key opportunities: the ability for banks to mobilise balance sheet assets for regulatory capital optimisation, and connecting alternative originators and banks alike with new sources of capital in-market and cross-border, all of this seamlessly and profitably," said Manuel Silva Martínez, partner and head of Investments at Santander InnoVentures, who will also join CrossLend’s advisory board.
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