|Industry||Finance and Technology|
MarketInvoice is a United Kingdom-based financial technology (or 'fintech') company and one of the largest peer-to-peer lenders in Europe. It was the UK’s first online marketplace allowing companies to selectively and confidentially sell outstanding invoices to raise working capital. Launched in February 2011, the platform allows small and medium-sized businesses who have outstanding invoices to trade these with institutional investors online. Investors advance cash against these future payments for a fee. As of 20 June 2015, the company claimed that over £425m worth of funding had been provided to businesses on the site.
The company was founded by Anil Stocker, Ilya Kondrashov and Charles Delingpole. Anil and Ilya remain in the company as CEO and COO,CFO respectively. Anil has a background in private equity, working first with the Lehman Brothers Private Equity Group, and subsequently the investment bank Cogent Partners. Born in Switzerland, he studied Economics at Cambridge University. Kondrashov is Russian and also studied Economics at Cambridge, which is how they know each other. The duo were named ‘FinTech Kings’ in City AM in 2014.
MarketInvoice is based in London and launched in February 2011. The company was backed with £930,000 of seed finance from angel investors. By November 2013, the company was trading £10 million of invoices a month. The company was launched in a climate of macroeconomic uncertainty, where large corporates delay payments to small companies as a way to preserve cash.
MarketInvoice's platform allows small businesses to sell their unpaid invoices to a pool of global investors. This gives businesses instant liquidity and the buyers a healthy return. The platform is a new take on invoice finance, with the receivable being sold over an online exchange rather than bilaterally to a bank or factor.
Like many peer-to-peer lenders, the company has experienced high growth and monthly volume of invoices traded is now over £25million. In late 2014 the company raised a £5m investment from Venture Capital firm Northzone and Paul Forster, founder of Indeed.com.
MarketInvoice was declared City AM's "Innovation of the Year" winner in 2012, as well as winner of the Institute of Credit Management's "Commercial Finance Provider of the Year" Award in 2013. MarketInvoice was a finalist for the Startups website's "Innovative Business of the Year" competition 2011 and was a finalist for Business Money Magazine's 2012 Alternative Funding Provider of the Year competition. MarketInvoice was also a finalist for Credit Today Awards Alternative Lender of the Year 2012. MarketInvoice won Best Use of Technology (Creditor) at the 2014 Credit Today Awards. The company was featured in the Smarta Breakthrough 50 as one of the 50 best breakthrough companies in June 2014.
They won Corporate Finance Provider of the Year, in March 2015 at the Business Finance Awards, and an Excellence in Customer Experience award at the Financial Innovation Awards in November 2014.
In August 2013, MarketInvoice was awarded £5 million in government funding to lend to small businesses through the Business Finance Partnership. The extension of the scheme, to boost finance through non-bank lenders, was announced by Vince Cable, business secretary.
In October 2014 the Greater Manchester Combined Authority committed £16 million per year to invest in local business through the MarketInvoice platform.
The Breedon Report on Alternative Finance, published on March 16, 2012, announced that the availability of finance could be constrained as the British economy recovers, leading to a potential credit gap of up to £191 billion over the next five years. The report also pointed out that while bank lending dominates the market, there is significant potential to develop both the demand and supply of non-bank finance to match the trend that occurred in the USA where banks account for significantly less of total funding to SMEs. Specific policy proposals submitted to Business Secretary Vince Cable through this report identified greater use of invoice discounting and supply chain finance to allow SMEs to unlock cash efficiently from outstanding payments from large corporates. MarketInvoice was one of a number of businesses that contributed to the task force report and is cited by the task force as an example of online invoice finance marketplaces.
- James Hurley (21 June 2011). "Hedge funds meet small firms on invoice auction site". Daily Telegraph June 2011.
- Helen Loveless (26 June 2011). "Now you can put invoices on eBay and ask for bids". The Mail on Sunday.
- Dunsby, Megan (2015-01-26). Startups.co.uk http://startups.co.uk/marketinvoice-boosted-by-5m-funding-from-northzone-and-indeed-com-founder/. Missing or empty
- Harriet Green (13 October 2014). "Fintech kings talk starting from scratch, old clients and handing businesses a lifeline". City AM.
- James Hurley (13 September 2011). "Mid-size businesses turn to 'eBay for invoices’". Daily Telegraph September 2011.
- Wired Staff (25 April 2012). "Startup of the Week: MarketInvoice". Wired.
- Kate Lough (27 October 2011). "Lending to SMEs is paying off for two former city boys". Evening Standard.
- Sudip Kar-Gupta (8 November 2011). "Small firms’ cashflow woes boost MarketInvoice". Reuters.
- David Prosser (23 January 2012). "Factoring in a speedier cash flow for small companies". Independent.
- "AltFi Market Share Graph". AltFi.
- Steve O'Hear (3 December 2014). "MarketInvoice, The U.K. Invoice Finance Marketplace, Raises £5M". TechCrunch.
- "City A.M. Awards 2012 - Innovation of the Year Winner Market Invoice". YouTube. 2011-07-29. Retrieved 2014-02-07.
- "2013 winners". The ICM British Credit Awards. Retrieved 2014-02-07.
- "Innovative Business of the Year, 2011". Startups. 2011-10-25.
- "Best Alternative Funding Provider, 2012". Business MoneyFacts Magazine. 2011-12-12.
- "Credit Today Awards, 2012". Credit Today. 2012-03-26.
- "Credit Today Awards 2014". Credit Today. May 2014.
- "Smarta Breakthrough 50". Smarta. June 2014.
- "Vince Cable: Business lending to get £30m boost". BBC News. 2013-03-22. Retrieved 2014-02-07.
- Amy Andrew (18 November 2014). "Manchester authorities invest 2 million in growing local business". This is Money.
- SME task force (16 March 2012). Boosting Finance Options For Business. SME task force (Report).