Last week, Lending Club announced Lending Club Open Integration, which will benefit the retail p2p lending investment community. This launch expands their application programming interface (API), adding to what online advisors and broker-dealers can do on behalf of their clients. The existing API allowed access for third parties to automate investments, submit orders and retrieve balances. New functionality is being introduced with this announcement and the ecosystem is taking notice.
The reason for this new integration is due to the previously cumbersome process of managing Lending Club investments when using third party tools. Previously, users were required to first create a Lending Club account on their website. Users then had to link an API key to the third party, something that is confusing for many people. In addition, any money transfers required you to login directly to your Lending Club account. This limitation meant juggling between LendingClub.com and a third party site and resulted in a poor customer experience. Lending Club is now opening up their systems and two of the third party providers have already announced plans to integrate.
Earlier this week, NSR Invest announced through a press release their plans to participate in the Lending Club Open Integration. NSR Invest targets the financial advisor market, offering a portal for a financial advisor to manage hundreds of p2p lending accounts. They are also currently working on integration with leading portfolio management systems and data aggregation services.
With the new Open Integration, Lending Club account creation and money management can all be done within NSR. The integration will offer a seamless experience for financial advisors and individual investors.
Michael Phillips, Co-Founder and Chief Architect of NSR Invest had this to say about the recent announcement:
We’ve led the industry in a long series of firsts, beginning back in 2011 when we developed the first-ever independent third-party analytics and investment tool for Lending Club investors. We are building an essential solution for financial advisors who want intelligent access to investment opportunities across the p2p landscape. NSR Invest’s proprietary loan selection and order management system sets the standard for stability, speed and responsiveness.
LendingRobot, a third party provider focused on individual investors announced today their participation in the Lending Club Open Integration. LendingRobot describes itself as a robo-advisor for marketplace lending. They offer algorithms and high-speed order execution to enable their clients to have a hands-off investing experience. Investors will be able to create a Lending Club account, fund their account and execute orders directly through LendingRobot.com.
Emmanuel Marot CEO and Co-Founder of LendingRobot had this to say about their plans to leverage this integration:
Increasing ease of use and promoting more entrants into the marketplace lending universe is our core mission and works to everyone’s benefit. The simpler we make it for new investors to come online, the larger the marketplace lending industry will grow helping borrowers and lenders alike.
It’s nice to see Lending Club’s continued focus on retail investors. Lending Club is no longer going to rely on investors only using LendingClub.com. The Lending Club Open Integration is solving a problem many investors faced. This process was confusing to newer investors and most investors don’t want to be this hands-on. Additionally, a majority of investors want someone else managing their investments and with this asset class it hasn’t been easy until now. This integration, along with the partnerships with third parties will make it easier for investors to access this asset class. As more third parties come on board, Lending Club is sure to increase their individual investor base, which was announced to be over 100,000 in their most recent earnings call. Hopefully we will see Prosper follow suit, which will allow for the complete management of multiple marketplace lending platforms on one site.
Full Disclosure: NSR Invest is owned by the same holding company that owns Lend Academy and LendIt Conference. Peter Renton, the founder of Lend Academy is also a co-founder and strategic advisor of NSR Invest.