A real ramshackle range of regulatory news updates today but I focus here on Funding Circle (FCH). I first wrote about this one in the summer of last year, after I noticed an office of its during a business trip of mine in San Francisco. Suffice to say it was 'big and bold on the second floor of a nice small scale development in the middle (and most expensive part) of the city'. In that article, I highlighted the huge IPO shocker from a 440p listing price to just 135p then. The strategic car crash continued...
I have written on Funding Circle (FCH) a few times on this website, most recently here where I noted that targeting 'adjusted EBITDA break-even' and continuing to expect free cash outflows hardly made a compelling business case even before you considered the lack of the validity of the business model given 'it is late to the lending party and hence likely to be skewed to a bunch of loans which the big banks - for whatever reason - have passed on'. Today's update from the company sounds bullish as it has gained 'accreditation to join the British Business Bank's (BBB) Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans Scheme (CBILS)'...
Its shares already down from a 440p 2018 IPO price to little more than 80p, now a “Directorate Change” announcement from SME loans platform company Funding Circle (FCH) – and the shares further down, towards 78p…
Whilst the country is a matter of days from an important political decision, back in the world of markets and companies, I see my old pals at Funding Circle (FCH) are continuing to struggle with a sub one quid share price and a variety of excitable press disclosures including the introduction of a 1.25% exit charge for investors wishing to re-sell their loans in order to turn their savings back into cash. And naturally it is not as if the ball has been smashed out of the park in terms of returns and related.
I see there is another bizarre story around Funding Circle (FCH) in the Sunday press with the observation that the company is 'diverting some borrowers away from its peer-to-peer lending site to rivals and traditional banks...as a way to help borrowers seeking larger unsecured loans above £500,000'.
You all know what I think about the peer-to-peer lending Funding Circle (FCH) which i have written about negatively a couple of times in the last few months, most recently here Back then I concluded 'you do not need to get involved... unless you are a desperate business which really, really needs finance and the mainstream banks have prudently turned you down already. For the rest of us, grab some popcorn and watch the ongoing post-IPO car crash'. Broadly speaking this still feels a very, very prudent position to take.
Many people who work outside the financial services do not believe it when I say that some of the greatest stories can be found in the regulatory news statements by listed companies. And by 'great', of course I mean both the simply awe-inspiring...and the absolutely shocking…
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