Guest Blog: ATB LendR
By: Chett Matchett
In Alberta’s current economic state, we have all heard the message that now is the time to diversify, to support local businesses, to embrace innovation.
At ATB Financial, we have found this message to be exciting, motivating, and ultimately one of the catalysts to start reimagining what the future of banking looks like.
We have found ourselves asking questions like:What if we were more than just a bank?
What if banking was the avenue to all happiness?
How can we help small businesses in Alberta in a truly unique/different way?
What if… EVERY Albertan could lend to an Alberta business?
Introducing ATB LendR. A new face to small business lending.
What is ATB LendR?
ATB LendR is a crowdlending platform, promoting economic diversity and growth in Alberta through peer to peer lending. Using what we’re calling a Lift Loan, ATB checks the basics, sets the terms, and commits that if you – the crowd – likes their story and is willing to lift the business half way to their loan amount, ATB Financial will match it and fund the loan. LendRs participate on the same terms as ATB – 12% interest and monthly repayments. To be a LendR you don’t have to be an ATB customer or an accredited investor, just an Albertan who understands the great potential and energy in our entrepreneurs and small businesses.
Who can be a LendR?
Alberta Residents over the age of 18 can be a LendR. Securities rules do not allow us to accept LendRs from other provinces.
Are there limits on what I can lend?
The most you can lend to any one business on any single loan is $5,000. You also can’t have more than $10,000 lent out in aggregate.
Does ATB get repaid first?
No. All repayments are split between all the LendRs, including ATB.
What kind of businesses qualify for a lift loan?
Small businesses that have been an ATB Business customer for at least 12 months can apply for a Lift Loan. We use a unique lending model to review applications, looking at things like account history and credit scores. It is closer to a business credit card application than a bank’s commercial loan review.
Why doesn’t ATB give them a regular loan?
In some cases the businesses may qualify for a regular loan, but may want a Lift Loan. In some cases they may not qualify for a regular loan. That could be because they aren’t established enough for regular loan criteria, or the nature of their business isn’t well suited to it.
Are there any costs for LendRs to participate?
ATB LendR is free to join. There are no fees to load funds on the platform, or make a loan, and any interest you earn is yours. During our initial launch period if you load funds and decide not to make a loan, you’ll be able to withdraw them without charge. After our initial launch period there will be a 1% charge to take funds off the platform, to cover various transaction costs.
For more information and to sign up as a Founding LendR please visit ATB LendR SignUp