Prosper.com in the News
Hedge Funds and Institutional Investors Tiptoe into P2P Lending
April 08, 2013Hedge funds — especially those already focused on high-yield fixed income and distressed credit — are waking to the opportunity represented by the $1 trillion consumer credit market, says Ron Suber, and to the possibility of using peer-to-peer (P2P) lending to tap it.
Your Financial Life
April 02, 2013CEO, Steve Vermut, joins Pat Vitucci with KDOW Wall Street Business Network to discuss Prosper and peer-to-peer lending. Jump to 36:20 to chime in!
10 Best Ways to Earn More Interest on Your Savings
March 11, 2013Kiplinger lists the top spots for eking out interest on your savings. Peer-to-peer lending through Prosper makes the list.
Crowdfunding gets stamp of approval
March 01, 2013Ron Suber, Head of Global Institutional Sales speaks with Euromoney Magazine on United States peer-to-peer lending. Peer-to-peer lending has become accepted by lenders as a “valid, uncorrelated, self-paying asset class.”
Peer-to-Peer Lender Seeks Investors Hunting for Yield
February 26, 2013Many investors hunt for yield and banks remain hesitant to lend at pre-crisis levels. Prosper hopes to fill the gap with an alternative investment opportunity.
Why Peer-to-Peer Lending is a Good Investment Choice
February 25, 2013Entrepreneurs like J.D. Roth are increasingly interested in new investment opportunities with healthy returns. J.D. Roth considers peer-to-peer lending a viable option.
P2P lenders offer opportunities to hedge funds and investors, says industry veteran Suber
February 18, 2013Peer-to-peer lenders, bypassing banks to match borrowers with lenders, could provide opportunities for hedge funds and institutional investors- an interview with our Head of Global Institutional Sales, Ron Suber.
Interview with New Prosper CEO Stephan Vermut
February 13, 2013Lend Academy’s Peter Renton visited the Prosper offices for a one-on-one interview with new CEO, Stephan Vermut, and Head of Global Institutional Sales, Ron Suber to discuss new and exciting changes for Prosper.
Peer-to-Peer Lending - Determining the Future of Banking across the World
February 06, 2013The concept of peer-to-peer lending has subsequently become synonymous with the modern American dream, as it enables business start-ups to gain funding without having to approach banks.
Bob's Daily Buzzword: 'Peer-to-Peer Lending'
January 31, 2013Bob Rice, general managing partner with Tangent Capital Partners LLC, explains how Peer-to-Peer Lending is the “future of personal finance.”
Lender Prosper Marketplace shakes up board, hires new CEO
January 25, 2013According to the San Francisco Business Times, Prosper Marketplace secured a ‘new lease on life’ with recent management changes and funding round.
Loan start-up Prosper raises $20 mln, led by Sequoia
January 22, 2013Prosper announces $20 million raised from venture capital firms led by Sequoia Capital, stepping up competition with rival Lending Club.
Prosper Reboots with a New CEO and New Funding
January 22, 2013Big news for Prosper today covered by Peter Renton at Lend Academy.
Peer-To-Peer Lending Marketplace Prosper Raises $20M from Sequoia, Eric Schmidt and Others; Brings On New CEO
January 22, 2013Prosper raises $20 million in new funding led by Sequoia Capital with existing investors, including Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Crosslink Capital, Accel Partners, CompuCredit, Omidyar Network, Eric Schmidt’s TomorrowVentures and Volition Capital, all participating.
Banks’ Pain is Startups’ Gain
January 22, 2013Is Silicon Valley becoming the new Wall Street? As major banks grapple with layoffs, fewer bonuses and expensive legal bills from mortgages gone bad, financial startups, like Prosper, are gaining momentum.
Prosper CEO, Dawn Lepore on CNBC's Squawk on the Street
December 15, 2012Prosper Chief Executive Officer, Dawn Lepore on CNBC's Squawk on the Street to discuss Prosper's peer-to-peer lending platform.
The Next Big Thing | On Point with NPR's Tom Ashbrook
October 03, 2012Prosper's Chief Operating Officer, Kirk Inglis joins The Wall Street Journal’s technology editor Scott Austin, T2 Venture Capital’s co-founder and Managing Director Victor Hwang, DCM’s co-founder and General Partner David Chao on NPR’s On Point with Tom Ashbrook. Listen as they discuss the top venture-backed U.S. companies – including Prosper – in search of the next big thing.
The Top 10 Venture-Backed Companies
September 27, 2012Prosper.com ranked 4th on The Wall Street Journal’s annual list of the top 50 venture-backed companies. Over 5,900 companies were considered. To be eligible, companies must be US based, have received an equity round of financing in the past 3 years, and valued at less than $1 billion.
8 Ways to Earn More on Your Savings
August 27, 2012Interest rates for savers aren’t very interesting these days. According to MoneyTalksNews, peer-to-peer lending is a great way for savers to make more on their money.
A Financial Plan for the Truly Fed Up
August 03, 2012What to do when traditional investment choices seem riddled with deceit and incompetence? Ron Leiber presents some alternative suggestions for people who are frustrated with the existing system, including peer-to-peer lending with Prosper.
Beyond the Tried-and-True: Generating Cash in Later Life
June 11, 2012A look at five atypical ways to boost income in retirement.
Looking for 10% Yields? Go Online for Peer-to-Peer Lending
June 06, 2012Forbes Magazine demonstrates why peer to peer lending is a growing resource on an investor's income menu.
Would You Lend Money to These People?
April 13, 2012Big investors are piling into the 'peer-to-peer' lending market. Here's how to do it - safely, according to Wall Street Journal.
Earn Higher Returns with Microloans
January 02, 2012Microfinance investments can yield 5.5% or more - often while helping schools and nonprofits.
Small Businesses Get Access to Loans from Peers
December 20, 2011FOX National News profiles Prosper on how it is helping entrepreneurs get access to affordable capital and investors get access to high-yield returns.
Prosper CEO, Chris Larsen, on FOX Business News to discuss Prosper's 370% growth
October 17, 2011Prosper CEO, Chris Larsen, is interviewed on FOX Business News' After the Bell news show on the company's 370% year-over-year growth and industry-leading seasoned investor returns.
FOX NEWS Covers P2P Lending Growth
October 16, 2011FOX News covers the growing P2P lending industry and profiles how Prosper is helping borrowers consolidate debt and fund small business growth.
The Top 50 Venture-Backed Companies
March 11, 2011Prosper.com named to the Wall Street Journal's "The Next Big Thing" list for 2011, which recognizes the 50 most promising venture-backed companies, selected from more than 10,600 U.S.-based companies.
New Ways to Get a Loan Without Going to the Bank
January 06, 2011Peer-to-Peer Lenders Are Eager to Loan Money at Attractive Rates
Social Lender Prosper.com Drops Auction Model
December 20, 2010Prosper.com says it will no longer allow lender bidding to set interest rates on new loans.
Mom, Dad, Can I Borrow $140,000?
November 27, 2010Business is booming at the Bank of Mom and Dad.
Credit Crunch Gives 'Microlending' a Boost
September 26, 2010If you think "microlending" is just about helping a street vendor in India buy a cart or getting a new sewing machine for a seamstress in Tanzania, think again.
Are Americans de-banking?
August 30, 2010Fortune lists three signs that there might be a subtle de-banking happening in America.
Is Bad Credit Bad for Small Business Startups?
June 24, 2010With roughly 600,000 businesses launching every year, entrepreneurship is, for many, part of the American Dream. But for those with bad credit, the prospect of business ownership may seem more like a fantasy than a viable option.
An Online Lender Takes on the SEC
June 10, 2010Peer-to-peer lender Prosper Marketplace says it shouldn't be treated like an investment firm.
Prosper.com Finalizes $14.7 Million Series D Funding Round
April 16, 2010Peer to peer lending company Prosper.com has announced that it has finalized a $14.7 million Series D round from new investors.
Peer to peer lender Prosper raises $14.7M
April 16, 2010Prosper Marketplace Inc., a peer to peer lending company, said Friday it raised $14.7 million in a fourth round of funding.
New website brings crowd sourcing to fashion
April 01, 2010An Internet startup called Fashion Stake launching in coming weeks aims to shake up the fashion industry, just as peer-to-peer file sharing changed the music industry.
Why You Shouldn't Pay Your Taxes With a Credit Card
March 26, 2010Consider other options for paying off your debt to the IRS.
Debt Consolidation Loans Becoming Increasing Popular on Peer-to-Peer Lending Marketplaces
February 27, 2010Borrowers are turning to peer-to-peer lending companies, such as Prosper Marketplace and Lending Club, for debt consolidation loans more than every other type of loan request made, according to new data from Prosper Marketplace.
New Gartner Study Predicts Peer-to-Peer Lending to Grow to $5 Billion By 2013
January 06, 2010Prosper Marketplace, Lending Club and other peer-to-peer lending companies received encouraging news from a new Gartner study this week indicating that the peer-to-peer lending industry would grow to $5 billion worldwide during the next three years.
5 Ways to Pump Up Your Income: Your bank, your boss, and your portfolio aren't doing much to boost your bottom line-reason enough to try these additional revenue-raisers.
November 23, 2009Jack Reidy, 42, of Chicago invested $10,000 over 100 loans (60% of them with borrowers who had scores over 700) at Prosper in 2008. Nine of the loans are in default, but he's still averaging an 8% return. "I'm pretty happy," he says. Or a simpler way: Prosper.com's Balanced Portfolio Plan, which averages 7% and puts you in a package of the highest-rated loans.
Welcome to the Machine: Innovations in P2P lending may put computers over people
November 18, 2009The largest sites in the US have originated loans worth more than USD 200 m in total [Prosper originated $180]. This is, however, only a tiny fraction of the overall volume of outstanding consumer loans in the US – which stands at USD 2.4 trillion.
Prosper adds Capital One co-founder to board, pockets $1M investment
November 17, 2009San Francisco Business Journal, Mark Calvey, Nov-17-2009 "The future of consumer and small business finance is changing rapidly, and Prosper is at the forefront of this transformation,” said Morris, managing partner at QED Investors. Prosper is the nation's largest person-to-person lending marketplace, with more than $180 million in loans and 870,000 members.
Peer-to-Peer Lending Explained: Brother, Can You Spare $100?
November 12, 2009Prosper Loans Marketplace is America's largest peer-to-peer lending marketplace, making over $183 million in loans since it launched in 2006.
Capital One Co-Founder Backs P2P Lender Prosper
November 11, 2009Nigel Morris, co-founder of Capital One, will join the Prosper board of directors. Prosper previously raised around $40 million, from firms like Accel Partners, Benchmark Capital, Fidelity Ventures, DAG Ventures, Meritech Capital Partners and Omidyar Network.
Prosper.com gets another $1M for peer-to-peer lending
November 10, 2009That's a relatively small amount compared to the $41 million that the San Francisco company has raised in all, but the new money is also noteworthy because it comes from Nigel W. Morris, co-founder of Capital One, a major credit card and banking company.
Old Line Banker Puts $1 Million Into P2P Lender Prosper
November 10, 2009Prosper.com, a popular peer-to-peer lending marketplace in the U.S., has received a $1 million infusion from Nigel Morris, co-founder of Capital One, via his venture capital firm QED Investors. This brings the company's total funding to over $41 million from Accel Partners, DAG Ventures, Fidelity Ventures and Benchmark Capital, among other investors. Prosper pioneered the idea of concept of people-to-people lending in the U.S with its launch in 2006.
More Americans Bypass Banks
November 08, 2009Recent problems in the financial system have contributed to that growth. Despite the bailout funds big banks have received and the profits they've recorded, "the money's not getting into the street," says Chris Larsen, CEO of Prosper. As a result, people who need loans are looking for alternatives. Adds Larsen: "I think Americans are going to have to start participating more directly in the credit system," by making loans to one another through P2P sites instead of relying on banks.
Prosper moves into consumer financing with Zero Motorcycles
November 05, 2009Prosper is billing the service as "the first fully integrated peer-to-peer lending retail purchase financing solution in history".
Prosper an Option for Vehicle Financing
November 05, 2009This arrangement chips away at an advantage credit cards have long had over Prosper loans, Chris Larsen, Prosper's chief executive, said. Credit cards have been the preferred financing option because they can provide funds during the transaction, he said. "The idea of getting into the payment stream itself is very attractive," Larsen said.
Finance Start-Ups Form Trade Group
October 20, 2009Executives at members of the Coalition for New Credit Models called their businesses the "wind and solar" of the financial services industry, with the potential to revolutionize the transmission of funds from savers to borrowers and open the flow of credit to consumers who have few dealings with banks and to small and midsize businesses.
Credit crunch disa-peering in individual loans
September 28, 2009Right now, according to Prosper CEO Chris Larsen, most borrowers are using the site to consolidate debts such as credit card bills.
How to Get the Most Out of $1,000 Right Now
September 24, 2009I've made about 13 percent on a thousand-plus loans, helping people pay for home improvements, braces, new small businesses. A great way to do good while doing well.
In a Tight Market, Borrowers Turn to Peers
September 20, 2009About 50 percent of Prosper's loans goes to borrowers trying to consolidate credit card debt, said Chris Larsen, Prosper's chief executive. Prosper's loans can come with interest rates as low as 4 percent. "With their credit card debt, it could take 20 years to pay it off," Larsen said.
Financial Innovation Under Fire
September 17, 2009Regulation complicates even the rollout of financial products and services that are seemingly pro-consumer. Still, peer-to-peer companies like Prosper... were nearly killed in 2008 by a ruling that the firms had to restructure their loans as securities and register with the Securities & Exchange Commission. They have managed to soldier on.
Booming Loan Market
September 15, 2009CNN's Christine Romans reports on a thriving loan market that leaves banks and credit card companies out.
A Booming Loan Market
August 17, 2009It's no secret banks have become tight-fisted. But creditworthy borrowers (and not-so-creditworthy) haven't gone away. Financial researcher Celent figures online borrowing will double next year, to almost $6 billion, with Prosper's membership topping $1 million.
August 10, 2009Maybe there would have been no subprime-mortgage crisis if eager lenders had looked into the eyes of their prospective borrowers. Recent scientific research doesn't say as much, but it suggests looks play a role in lending.
Personal loans, with a twist
August 02, 2009"We have a system that we think ensures that both sides get a fair deal," said Chris Larsen, Prosper's chief executive and co-founder.
Five Ways to Get Money Fast
July 27, 2009"People don't want to go to big banks. They are unresponsive to their needs, so they are looking for creative ways to get the money. It's a blooming business."
Five Alternative Sources of Funding
July 22, 2009At Prosper, borrowers list how much they need and details about their business, while strangers can make loans with as little as $25.
Blogtalk radio: All about peer to peer Lending
July 22, 2009Now that Prosper.com is back from its quiet phase complete with SEC registration and a secondary market for loans, CEO Chris Larsen took some time to talk to WalletPop about Peer to Peer Lending.
5 Ways to Get Cash Fast
July 21, 2009The kindness of strangers isn't far out of reach, thanks to the increasing popularity of peer-to-peer lending sites like Prosper.com.
Prosper is Baaacckkkk....
July 21, 2009Prosper's re-launch is welcome news in a time when other lenders are reining in credit offers. Let the bidding begin!
Peer-to-Peer Lending Luring Investors
July 17, 2009
SEC Greenlights Prosper
July 14, 2009Prosper is now the first and thus only Internet auction-based P2P loans platform to have its registration statement declared effective by the SEC, which is evidently good news for other players in the P2P lending industry.
As Prosper Gets The Green Light, A Comeback For Peer-to-Peer Lenders?
July 14, 2009Prosper raised the minimum credit score requirements for borrowers to 640 from 520 and introduced a new rating system that takes into account the loan performance of 29,000 Prosper loans as well as credit score data. The company also introduced a minimum “bid floor” for each loan listing and dropped minimum bid requirements to $25 from $50, which should help lenders price loans more appropriately and make it easier for them to diversify.
Peer-to-peer lender Prosper reboots after SEC gives go-ahead
July 14, 2009The site, among the first of its kind to facilitate loans directly between individuals online, is getting the chance to stake out market share amid the U.S.'s longest recession since the Great Depression.
Peer-to-peer lender Prosper resumes service after SEC nod
July 14, 2009Launched in 2006, Prosper was the first online lending and borrowing platform of its kind in the United States and signaled an innovative new way for small business owners to raise funds.
P2P lender Prosper is back and better than ever
July 14, 2009A big part of the re-launch, Prosper has instituted several investor-friendly changes which should stimulate both the lending and the borrowing markets at Prosper.
Prosper resumes lending after getting SEC approval
July 13, 2009The move significantly enhances the liquidity for Prosper's lenders, who can auction their loans at any time on the new auction-based trading platform.
Prosper Back in Peer-to-Peer Lending Game with Full Approval of SEC
July 13, 2009Sure, there are now thousands of pages of Prosper documentation on file at the SEC, with thousands more on the way, and lender (aka investors) must now meet various state-mandated "investor suitability" requirements. But fundamentally, it's the same peer-to-peer lending service the company introduced in 2006, albeit with hundreds of incremental improvements.
New Bids on the Block
April 30, 2009INNOVATION is a dirty word in finance these days but, with securitisation markets gummed up, fresh thinking may be just what credit markets need. Prosper and DebtX, two online marketplaces with very different customers, are among those who think they stand to gain.
Bring Silicon Valley to Wall Street
April 29, 2009Financial innovations tend to be either unquestionably good (ATMs, credit cards) or arguably malevolent (credit default swaps), and peer-to-peer lending is widely considered to be among the former. It is the internet era's version of community banking, in which borrowers actually know their bankers, and it's also, in this time of tight credit markets, an alternative way for consumers and small businesses to get access to money when they need it.
P2P Lending Marketplace Prosper Gets Off The Bench, Debuts Open Market Initiative
April 29, 2009There are new features, too. Prosper announced its Open Market initiative, which will allow other financial institutions (e.g. auto lenders, small business lenders and community development lenders) to place their already funded loans the Prosper website for auction. The company will vet lenders and require three payments to have already been made on any loan up for sale.
Stop Subsidizing the Street
April 29, 2009Luckily, starting anew is exactly what's happening in the banking sector, with the launch of several start-ups with innovative ideas. They range from new ways to insure mortgages to new models of lending to reliable consumers by bypassing the current banking system. Many others, such as…Prosper, are popping up on the Internet, letting investors, rather than credit officers, decide who is creditworthy. It's too early to tell if these attempts will succeed, but it's vital that they occur. Through trial and error, a new world of banking will rise from the ashes of the old one.
FinovateStartup 2009 Best of Show Winners Named
April 28, 2009After a wonderful day in San Francisco featuring awesome demos from 56 startups, four emerged as FinovateStartup Best of Show winners.
State lets Prosper.com resume raising money
April 28, 2009"I hope this leads to wider acceptance of peer-to-peer lending," said Commissioner of Corporations Preston DuFauchard. He said the state's experience with Prosper, prior to the SEC intervention, made it "comfortable" that its bidding system gives lenders the information they need to invest in loans wisely.
Prosper.com Reopens for Lending
April 28, 2009Prosper is also introducing what it is calling the Open Market Initiative, a way for lending institutions to put any loan — an auto loan or small business loan, for example — up for sale and allow any person or institution to bid on it. Prosper will vet lenders and require three payments to have already been made on any loan up for sale. The company says this could help thaw the credit market by providing an easy, transparent alternative to securitization, giving institutional lenders the liquidity to restart new lending.
Lend to a friend; Peer-to-peer lender Prosper.com is back in business
April 28, 2009So it is good news for all lending sites that California has given Prosper its blessing. Commissioner of Corporations Preston DuFauchard calls the site an example of "the kinds of innovative ideas that can help get credit in the hands of people who need it while instilling in our financial markets desperately needed openness and transparency."
Peer-to-Peer Lender Prosper Reopens Today at FinovateStartup
April 28, 2009There's good news in peer-to-peer lending today as Prosper reopened for business. The announcement was time around its appearance at FinovateStartup today. The company is adding loan resale component called Open Market (see diagram below). Open Market loans are initiated by other financial institutions, then resold on the Prosper platform. Open Market loans must have been originated by Prosper-vetted financial institutions, and be current and have had at least three on-time payments.
Prosper CEO says P2P lending could reboot economy
April 28, 2009With the credit markets still reeling from the 2008 Wall Street collapse, Larsen says "credit in the street is needed now more than anything," and that his company's new feature enables that by providing liquidity to banks. The new loan-trading platform gives secondary loan buyers full visualization into loans currently being serviced by a financial institution.
In Focus: Peer-to-Peer lending
April 28, 2009We've talked a lot about how challenging it has been to find a loan during the recession. In this segment we check in on a topic known as peer to peer lending. Jennifer Lane certified financial planner for Compass Planning joins us to talk about how peer to peer lending has been impacted by the global credit crunch.
The audacity of American bankers
March 15, 2009"I just can't believe they're still fighting this," said Chris Larsen, former CEO of E-Loan, who held the renegade belief that safeguarding customers' privacy was essential to his and other banks' self-interest. Larsen donated $1 million to bankroll the initiative drive that ultimately persuaded California legislators to adopt the landmark bill.
March 05, 2009SCIENCE proceeds by trial and error. The successes are trumpeted. The errors are often regarded with embarrassment by subsequent generations, and locked away in attic rooms of the subject's mansion like mad relatives in a Victorian novel. Usually, they stay there. Craniology, phrenology and eugenics, once-respectable fields of endeavour that are now regarded with a shudder, may shriek from time to time, but few sane people pay attention to them. One, however, has escaped recently, and is trying to rehabilitate itself. For years physiognomy—the idea that a person's face is a reflection of his character—was sneered at. Now, it is making a come back.
Find Your Perfect (Business) Match
February 11, 2009If what you need is a funding source, Prosper.com is a person-to-person lending marketplace that provides unsecured, three-year, fixed-rate loans for business and personal use. The would-be borrower posts the nature of the loan request, credit history and the maximum interest rate he is willing to pay, then lenders bid down the interest rate in an auction. If the borrower decides to accept the loan at the bid-down rate, funds are issued directly into his account.
Banks Say No? Online Lender Says Yes! (video)
February 11, 2009"It was amazing. I posted the loan," Miller explains. And, almost as soon as she posted her pitch asking for $3,000, she had 8 bids. "I had already started to get funded," Miller says.
5 Alternatives to Borrowing from Banks
November 18, 2008Borrowers and lenders list and bid for loans on Prosper, an eBay-like auction site that helps process loans of up to $25,000. Interest rates depend on a person's credit history and other criteria - lenders have access to a borrower's personal story, endorsements from friends and photos.
Peer-to-Peer Lending Volumes Worldwide
November 12, 2008Total worldwide originations are $262 million, with two-thirds of that from Prosper.
Use Prosper.com Loan To Get Lower, Fixed, Interest Rate
November 04, 2008See, she used her Prosper loan to pay off her credit card, swapping her interest rate for a lower, locked-in one. This can be a good tactic for the indebted to use, especially since credit card companies have become much more reluctant to reduce interest rates (and, in fact, for some time, many have been boosting interest rates on perfectly good accounts).
Loans in the time of Facebook
November 02, 2008Crystal Gnemi, a University of Kansas senior majoring in arts and architecture, credits her snappy profile for helping her get a $7,000 loan in 48 hours on Prosper, which uses an eBay-like bidding system for interest rates. Lenders offer amounts at particular interest rates; those with the lowest rates get in on the deal. Ms. Gnemi wrote that she planned to get a master's in architectural engineering and that she had a 3.6 G.P.A. "while working 30-hour work weeks while taking 18 credit-hour semesters."
Ask an Expert: Credit crunch forces small businesses to be creative
October 26, 2008Check out something called peer-to-peer lending. This form of private lending is increasing in popularity. Private lenders compete for your loans. Check out, for example, www.Prosper.com.
Keeping Small Business Healthy While Wall Street Isn't
October 14, 2008At sites like prosper.com, you pitch your idea and individuals bid on your loan. It's called peer to peer lending and it's growing in popularity. The site saw a 37 percent increase last month in the number of loans they brokered. Just like the other loan options; prosper is seeing an increase in the credit quality of their borrowers. Prime borrowers who have a credit score of 720 or higher accounted for 45 percent of their loans last month compared to just 30 percent a year ago.
Welcome to the Google Economy
October 13, 2008Transparency will come through regulation: decrees that require financial institutions to reveal their holdings. But it will also come through the transactions themselves. That is what appeals to me about Prosper: I know who I'm lending to and for what. Prosper's not going to replace Citibank (well, I didn't think it could…). But Citibank has much to learn from Prosper.
Risks and Rewards of Online Lending
October 01, 2008The key to success is twofold. First, find your balance -- a risk you feel comfortable taking and a return you're content with. Marilyn Paguirigan, a two-year veteran lender on Prosper, says she chased "sexy, double-digit rates" in the beginning and has already seen some of those loans default. She's since become more conservative and counts herself happy when she earns 7%. "I'm getting more than I would in a money-market account and I sleep well," she says.
Likes Taking Risks, Profitable Returns
September 30, 2008When someone seeks a loan on Prosper, the site's participating lenders "decide who and what get funded, rather than an elite group of bankers," said Chris Larsen, Prosper's founder and chief executive. At Prosper, based in San Francisco, applicants state why they want a loan — to start a business, pay down credit card debt, buy a house, pay for school — and how much they want, as well as the interest rate they hope to pay. Prosper runs a credit check and publishes the rating, and members can bid to participate in the loan, as if it were an item for sale on eBay.
How to Cope with the Credit Crunch
September 28, 2008Prosper, which has 800,000 registered users, is seeing more entrepreneurs with good credit scores signing up. "We're certainly seeing a steady increase of the quality of borrower coming to our site," Mr. Larsen says. About 55% of the loans being funded are for borrowers with credit scores above 720, he adds, while only about 5% are for those categorized as "subprime" borrowers.
Four Sources of Alternative Funds
September 17, 2008Thanks to the credit crunch, peer-to-peer loans to businesses are on the rise. As an alternative financing option, these loans offer many benefits, including fast delivery and competitive rates. Prosper currently advertises rates as low as 7.68%...
Person-to-Person (P2P) Lending Update
September 04, 2008Prosper: Through July, the leader in the market is running 10% ahead of its 2007 loan-origination pace. The company has funded $55 million and is on pace to do just under $100 million for the year.
More take social lending route to consolidate debt
September 03, 2008Though these types of loans have been used for funding anything from entrepreneurial ventures to wedding expenses, people have been flocking to the sites to get cash to pay off their credit card bills. At Prosper, for example, about half of all funded loans are used for debt consolidation and paying off high-interest debt.
Financing Is as Close as the Nearest Angel: Jane Bryant Quinn
August 27, 2008Last year, more mainstream borrowers started showing up. "Creditworthy people are being cut off from traditional sources such as home-equity loans," says Chris Larsen, Prosper.com's co-founder and chief executive officer.
From the Ground Up
August 24, 2008Steve Lubs was looking to get rid of his $8,000 in credit card debt, but his high interest rate had him bogged down. He tried getting a loan through a bank to pay off the balance but couldn't find one with an interest rate lower than 12 percent. That's when he turned to Prosper, one of several peer-to-peer lending networks that connect people who need a cash infusion with those who have money to lend. About 70 people have pitched in with $100 to $300, totaling the sum he needs to get out of debt, at a rate of 8 percent.
Serving the underserved
August 18, 2008TowerGroup warns banks that financial-services companies, and even retailers and others, are challenging them for the unbanked and underbanked markets. Among the challengers are H&R Block, Wal-Mart and peer-to-peer lenders such as Prosper.com; VirginMoney, which formalizes loans between friends and family members; and Finanz and GreenNote, which provide alternative student-loan funding sources such as friends, family and alumni.
Is Peer-to-Peer Lending a Solution for Start-ups?
July 08, 2008With the increasing scarcity of bank loans because of the economy's credit crunch, entrepreneurs are thirsty for new sources of capital. One such alternative is peer-to-peer lending, in which people lend other people money directly, without the involvement of a financial institution. Transactions take place online, incorporating elements of social-networking sites. Websites such as Prosper.com and Kiva.com connect borrowers and lenders, and the prize on the table is investments.
June 15, 2008"We've seen a major shift in creditworthy people getting funded on our site," said Chris Larsen, the chief executive at Prosper. "A lot of that shift is from people who'd traditionally gotten home equity loans."
Peer-to-peer online lending grows in tight economy
June 06, 2008"Home equity used to be the cash management tool for the credit-worthy borrower, and that has really, really dried up," says Chris Larsen, CEO at Prosper. "In many ways, Prosper's three-year, $25,000 loan is a pretty good proxy for what people were using home equity for -- improving their home, starting a sole proprietorship, college costs and certainly for replacing credit card debt.
How to Play $1K: Powerful P2P Loans
June 02, 2008...it's extremely important and highly recommended by the P2P lending sites to scatter your money throughout numerous loans of various denominations. In other words, I'll be spreading my $1,000 to at least 10 different borrowers...
Credit Crunch Benefits Some Start-Ups
May 15, 2008One example is Prosper Inc., a San Francisco company that enables individuals to make loans to each other. Prosper, whose backers include Accel Partners, Benchmark Partners and Fidelity Ventures, has seen a surge in well-qualified borrowers turning to it for financing after being frozen out of traditional credit markets. It has also seen more people willing to lend money through its network, seeking higher rates than they can earn on bank deposits.
Prosper Kicks Off Nationwide Lending with New Slogan and TV/Radio Advertising
May 07, 2008Armed with a new national lending capability, new slogan, "Let's bank on each other," and a window of opportunity to gain ground on the competition, person-to-person lending pioneer Prosper is preparing new marketing initiatives which includes television and radio advertising. Prosper said in its blog Monday that the ads will begin test runs this week.
Business Loans Get Creative
May 04, 2008Even as the Small Business Administration's main loan program gave out 17.6 percent fewer loans by early April than in the same period last year, online lending auction site Prosper.com has seen a big jump in high-quality borrowers and loan volume.
Loan Web Sites Tapped for College Cash
April 29, 2008Thanks to the credit crunch, dozens of student-loan lenders, including the nation's largest, Sallie Mae, have either sharply cut back on their offerings or have stopped offering loans. As a result, a growing number of students are turning to peer-to-peer lending sites like Prosper.com...
How I Became a Little-Guy Lender
April 22, 2008For me, there was no question which site I'd pick. Prosper was the leader, and I trusted Larsen, whom I'd spoken with before in the course of writing articles.
A New Way to Borrow Money
April 12, 2008Chris Larsen, Prosper's chief executive and co-founder, speaks often about "democratizing" the lending process and taking the decisions about who qualifies for a loan out of the hands of an elite minority.
In Credit Crunch, Lending To Each Other
March 21, 2008Since CBS News first reported on Prosper.com a year ago the credit crisis has made person-to-person lending take off, nearly tripling Prosper's customers to 630,000.
Where Either a Borrower Or a Lender Can Be
March 12, 2008Instead, the 31-year-old from Schaumburg, Ill., recently borrowed $22,500 on Prosper.com, an online lending network that matches individual borrowers and lenders. The interest rate on Mr. Walsh's loan: 10.25% -- several percentage points below what he says he would have had to pay at a bank.
Q&A: 'Bringing Together George Bailey and Gordon Gekko'
March 12, 2008It's combining community banking with the high finance of Wall Street -- bringing together George Bailey with a little Gordon Gekko.
How to Manage Credit Card Debt
March 04, 2008With talk of an impending recession, many credit card holders are trying to pay off debt — but are finding it easier said than done. Financial experts discuss strategies for managing credit card debt and offer tips for ways to avoid it altogether.
Hey, Buddy, Can You Spare $10,000?
February 28, 2008The slumping economy has sent the banking system into panic mode, making it tough for even people with the best credit rating to get a good interest rate. So a rising number of folks looking to consolidate debt, buy an engagement ring, finance their small business or pay off a mortgage are using the Internet to ask for help from a friend or, more often, a stranger.
New lending site helps people "prosper"
February 26, 2008Prosper.com is the on-line site that created this people-to-people lending model. it's like an eBay for money.
Prosper CEO sees company benefiting from credit crunch
February 25, 2008In an interview with the San Francisco Business Times after his keynote address, Larsen said Prosper also benefits from providing lenders with greater transparency on who is borrowing their money. Recent creations on Wall Street, such as collateralized debt obligations, are now in big trouble and their lack of transparency compounds the problems. Observers criticize how difficult it is to determine where the risk lies with some of these new products that helped fuel the recent era of easy money.
The World's 50 Most Innovative Companies
February 15, 2008So far, Prosper's lenders and borrowers are only in America, but a new joint venture would let Japanese lenders bid on American loans -- and the goal is to connect people (and capital) globally. Says Larsen: "The ultimate model puts together global efficient social capital with market efficiency. This is the groundwork being laid."
Peer lending websites let residents borrow, lend money
February 05, 2008Within three days, Ryan Koch received enough bids to pay his medical bills. He'll pay his lenders back--but will forever be in their debt. "It's really cool, I mean people you don't even know are willing to help you out," he said. "I have someone who gave $250 bucks. It's very nice."
Bank said no? Try a personal lender online
January 20, 2008Prosper, the largest in the U.S. with 500,000 members and $100 million in loans, leaves it up to the marketplace to decide who gets funded and at what interest rate. "It's done by the community itself, so people can get the right prices on both sides," said Chris Larsen, chief executive of Prosper.
At Last, a Bank of Your Own
January 07, 2008They're highly automated, remarkably transparent, and employ Web 2.0-era ways of matching borrowers to lenders.
Peer-to-peer lending hits its stride
December 25, 2007The market for the loans is still relatively small but growing fast, according to Celent, a research firm. Celent projects that $5.8 billion in peer-to-peer loans will be made in the USA by 2010, an 800% leap from the amount this year.
Social-networking principles have spawned a lending marketplace that lets individuals make loans to almost anyone
December 24, 2007For would-be lenders with a social agenda, options are proliferating at a rapid clip. In February , Prosper (www.prosper.com) debuted with a claim to be America's "first people-to-people lending marketplace."
Will a Stranger Lend You $25,000?
December 21, 2007The day the last loan officer rejected his application, Lindgren heard about Prosper. The auction-style site connects borrowers with lenders and promises both sides more favorable interest rates than banks by cutting overhead costs. Lindgren applied for the maximum $25,000 loan the next day, offering to pay 17.5% interest. Lenders found the offer so attractive that they bid the rate down to 10.2%, and Direct Textbook had the cash in its account within two weeks.
Online Lending Gets Easier and Safer
November 28, 2007Last month, for example, Prosper introduced a tool to give lenders a better idea of the estimated return of a loan they are bidding on. Lenders can also now choose from up to four portfolio plans -- essentially bundles of targeted "standing orders" that place bids on loan listings with an expected level of risk and return.
Person-To-Person Lending Flourishes on Web
November 02, 2007In a cafe in Washington D.C., 31-year-old Kelly Vielmo stares at a laptop screen and browses a listing of people who want to borrow money. He has logged into his account at "person-to-person" lending site Prosper.com.
Prosper proposes secondary market for person-to-person loans
October 31, 2007Upon receiving approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission, San Francisco-based Prosper plans to establish a secondary trading market via an online trading platform, or resale platform, that will allow lenders to transfer borrower notes to other Prosper lenders.
October 25, 2007Prosper, which is more laissez-faire and has a default rate of 3%, provides measures of "social capital", such as endorsements by friends, that help lenders to judge the risk of a specific borrower.
Prosper sheds light on person-to-person lending with new monthly survey
September 12, 2007Prosper, an online marketplace for person-to-person lending, said more individual lenders were shying away from subprime borrowers as the credit crunch began last month.
Peer-to-peer lending sites a growing presence on the Web
September 09, 2007Anyone who's ever lent a chunk of money to a relative or friend knows it can be a murky proposition fraught with sticky questions and daunting problems. How much should you lend? Do you charge interest? If so, how much is fair? How long should the borrower get to pay it back?
Options Grow For Investors To Lend Online
July 18, 2007For investors willing to risk a small portion of their assets, the person-to-person online lending market, popularized by companies such as Prosper.com, is paying typical returns of 8% to 12% or more. The sites, often billed to borrowers as lower-cost alternatives to credit cards and unsecured bank loans, match people who need small loans with willing lenders.
Look for a Higher Return? Consider Lending to a Peer
July 09, 2007Investors looking to avoid volatile market swings are increasingly lending out money, often to cash-strapped entrepreneurs and small business owners. The trend, known as peer-to-peer lending, typically involves people with a little cash on hand donning the hat of amateur banker and making loans to anyone from a friend or family member to a stranger that they were introduced by an Internet matchmaking firm.
50 Best Websites of 2007
July 08, 2007Prosper is a community of lenders and borrowers or social lending network operates outside of any bank, so the rates are better. Post a request for a loan, including desired amount and the maximum interest rate you'd be willing to pay; potential lenders place bids for the amount they are willing to lend, and at what rate.
July 01, 2007Last fall, San Francisco's Samovar Tea Lounge was in a cash crunch. Co-owners Jesse Jacobs, 36, Paul Fullarton, 36, and Robert Sandler, 33, had recently opened a second store, putting a crimp in Samovar's bank account just when the company needed to order holiday merchandise. There wasn't time to get a traditional bank or SBA loan, and the interest on a credit card cash advance would have killed profits.
Payday Loans Don't Pay
May 21, 2007If taking out a personal loan isn't a realistic possibility, asking your employer for a pay advance or going to online lending communities like Prosper.com can be a way of avoiding a payday loan.
ot Cash? You Can Loan Money Like a Big-Time Banker
May 09, 2007"We're imposing Web 2.0 concepts on a very old-guard business," says John Witchel, chief technology officer and co-founder of Prosper.
Top 10 Lessons From a Microlending Pioneer
May 09, 2007Jane Boon, who has lent around $125,000 to over 800 people on Prosper, offers 10 tips to help you improve your own lending intelligence.
How to bypass the bank and get a loan
April 30, 2007A man dressed as the animated movie hero Mr. Incredible presents himself before a group of lenders. He wants a new gaming system, new wakeboard bindings, and maybe a vacation. Or, as he puts it, "$6,000 to blow for fun." And he's willing to pay 10 percent annual interest for a three-year loan.
A Borrower or a Lender Be
April 01, 2007Chris Larsen wanted to use technology "to step back to a time when there was personal accountability in the credit markets." He hoped to revive the emotional connection people felt in banking's olden days--think It's a Wonderful Life--while generating market-rate returns.
Loans From Strangers Can Help a Start-Up to Prosper
March 12, 2007Getting lenders to hand over their money to perfect strangers seems like a tough proposition, but so far the site has brought in $40 million from people looking for an alternative investment.
New way to get a loan
March 12, 2007After two months of trying, Windsor resident John Rose could not find a bank that would loan him money to expand his Larkfield Bakery. So in frustration, he turned to a fast-growing Web site that takes a novel approach to lending.
Bad Credit Borrowers Can Get Loans From You
March 05, 2007Penic's only alternative would have been to borrow the money on a credit card, in her case, at a staggering 29 percent interest. But now, she has the money for her chocolate fountain, at 15 percent interest.
Be Your Own Bank
March 05, 2007Despite the risks, credit experts think that person-to-person, or P2P, lending could be a good investment. "It's a way to diversify your portfolio into an area with little correlation to other financial instruments," says Greg McBride, of Bankrate.com.
Q&A: Pierre Omidyar - Empower Seller
March 05, 2007Prosper gives people a platform, but individuals self-organize into their own groups. If a borrower defaults on a loan, the pool of lenders loses the money. Early on, we didn't think many for-profit companies would fit all three criteria, but we've found more than we expected.
S.F.-based Prosper upgrades online lending service
February 12, 2007Prosper CEO Chris Larsen said Monday the 1-year-old company is taking several steps to enhance the person-to-person online lending service.
The Art of the (Micro) Deal
January 30, 2007Chris Larsen, chief executive of Prosper Marketplace, explains how the online service links lenders with borrowers for micro loans.
Eight Top Tech Trends in '07: Prosper
January 29, 2007Editors and reporters at BusinessWeek identified eight lesser-known companies most likely to make a splash this year; we highlight them here.
Want to Loan Me Money? Here's a Picture of My Dog
January 27, 2007
Top 10 Web Sites of 2006: #1, Prosper
December 30, 2006The idea behind Prosper is a bit unusual today, but, as the site reminds readers, person to person lending loans without a financial intermediary has been around since 300 A.D. For those more used to the Internet age, think of it as eBay meets your neighborhood bank.
Help Strangers, Earn a Cool 15%
November 20, 2006How would you like to get in on the ground floor of...some guy in Maine who needs $500 to fix his car? The latest venture from Chris Larsen, 45, co-founder of online loan giant E-Loan, lets you do that and, if all goes well, make money in the process.
Interview with Chris Larsen, Prosper CEO
November 04, 2006American Microphone visits the San Francisco offices of Prosper to talk with Chris Larsen about democratizing finance. Prosper is an innovative peer-to-peer financial network allowing people to borrow and lend money with many of the same tools banks use.
Web Sites to Help You Act Like the Nobel Peace Prize Winner
October 21, 2006At Prosper.com, those with money to lend can view requests from U.S. residents with Social Security numbers who need money for, say, school or to consolidate debt. Lenders get basic information about applicants' debt and credit and then bid the interest rate they're willing to offer to fund part or all of the loan.
Person-to-person lending: High return, but risky?
October 06, 2006Fixed-income investors who are willing to take on some risk -- and devote some time to research -- may want to explore lending in the consumer credit market.
Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?
August 01, 2006In May, under the username All4Buddy, Townsend landed a $9,500 loan from a group of 77 individual lenders. The money appeared in her bank account two days later. She is part of a small but growing cadre of business owners taking advantage of person-to-person lending sites.
Peer to Peer Small Business Financing at Prosper
July 29, 2006One of the most frequently asked questions we get from entrepreneurs is how to land that initial small business financing they need to bootstrap their new business. One of the new alternatives to traditional bootstrap funding for your business is Prosper.com, America's first people-to-people lending marketplace.
Want to Bid on a Loan?
July 24, 2006Such peer-to-peer lending, analysts and Prosper lenders and borrowers say, is useful for individuals who have bad credit or have a hard time getting loans through traditional means like banks and credit unions. But it also is for people who are interested in an alternative way to get a fast loan, for, say, developing a small business or joining a poker tournament.
Lots Of Loans, But No Banks
July 03, 2006Prosper has 1,000 organized groups set up to let members lend to one another. "If you acquire customers through a Jimmy Stewart sense of community, you'll have a better business," he insists. And if his virtual savings and loan takes off, it will be a wonderful life indeed.
Former Wells CEO Paul Hazen joins Prosper's board
June 19, 2006Prosper, an online marketplace for person-to-person lending, said Monday that Paul Hazen has joined the board. Hazen, who is former chairman and CEO of Wells Fargo & Co., will bring valuable experience in financial services to the San Francisco startup's board.
How I Got My Funding: Trying Out Prosper
June 12, 2006Ms. Carroll joined Prosper, adding to her loan request another $2,000 that would allow her to pay off old credit-card debt from college. In April, she secured a $13,000 loan with 13% interest from lenders on Prosper. "I felt a sense of relief," she says. "I knew I was going in the right direction, finally doing what I want to do."
More Bang for Your Buck: Prosper
June 01, 2006"There's no better feeling than lending out your money, making a great deal, getting a great return on your money, and getting a thank you note saying thank you."
Peer-To-Peer Finance Connects Borrowers And Lenders
May 16, 2006In February, Prosper opened what it calls "America's first people-to-people lending marketplace." It's a site that helps users borrow and lend money among themselves without the involvement of banks. Though the company says it hasn't been around long enough to disclose its user base, it claims to host over 1,000 active loan listings and 800 active groups.
People to People Lending
May 11, 2006Prosper.com allows prospective borrowers to plead their case directly to fellow consumers. It's like an online matchmaking service, but instead of setting up partners for romance, prosper sets people up so they can borrow and lend money.
Would You Trust an Online Stranger for a Loan?
April 24, 2006Until recently, the only alternative for someone who couldn't secure a loan from a financial institution was to borrow money from a credit card at a high interest rate. Prosper.com has provided an alternative by allowing prospective borrowers to appeal directly to the public for help.
Site hooks up lenders, borrowers
March 06, 2006Like other Internet businesses that eliminate the middleman, its proposition is that everyone involved reaps the rewards of lower costs. Borrowers get better interest rates than they'd pay on credit cards or bank loans. Lenders earn more interest than they would from money-market funds or savings accounts.
February 23, 2006The internet age was supposed to herald hard times for the middleman. Customers, so it was said, would flock to the web to buy products and services faster, cheaper and more transparently than in shops or through intermediaries. Disintermediation has indeed come about, as any out-of-work travel agent or bookseller will tell you. Yet retail bankers-the middlemen between savers and borrowers-have been surprisingly untouched.
It's Like Lending to a Friend, Except You'll Get Interest
February 13, 2006
Prosper: The eBay of Loans?
February 13, 2006A decade ago, when Chris Larsen co-founded online loan broker E-Loan, he purposely took aim at traditional mortgage lenders, many of which he thought deceived borrowers and charged too much. Now, he intends to shake up a whole new swath of the financial services business.