Online SME lender reaches loan book milestone

by AB14 Aug 2018

A global, online SME lender has reached a new milestone for the value of loans written since it entered the market, just over 10 years ago.

With operations across the US, Canada and Australia, the OnDeck Group has lent more than US$9 billion to more than 80,000 small business customers.

Cameron Poolman, COE of OnDeck Australia said, “The Australian market is growing at 37% annually. However, while the total size of the alternative finance market in Australia is now 25 times the size it was in 2013, our market is still an emerging on-line lending market.”

OnDeck’s own data shows a number of pain points in the SME finance landscape and the lender has regularly called for better financing options for small and medium sized enterprises.

One in five Australian small businesses are unable to take on new work because of cash flow restrictions and nine out of 10 small businesses report better cash flow could improve revenue by an average of 11.7%.

Despite the challenges, Poolman expects the market will continue its strong growth trajectory and will likely reach maturity in less than six years; a process that took 12 years in the US. Currently, Australia is the second largest alternative finance market in the APAC region, behind China.

OnDeck was one of six online lenders that signed the new fintech code of lending last month. The code was developed by the Australian Finance Industry Association (AFIA), the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO), SME advocate theBankDoctor.org and industry association FinTech Australia.