Peer to Peer Lending

Peer to Peer Business Lending in India & Abroad (P2P Lending)

Peer to Peer Business Lending

The need for personal and commercial finance is gradually increasing in the present financial scenario. The banks, financial institutions, as well as NBFCs are continually trying to bridge the gap between the demand for finance and the supply of finance. However, while applying for the funds on credit with the aforementioned entities, the individual has to go through a number of formalities and most of the times, he or she has to keep certain security to avail such loans. Now, times are changing. The development of the internet and technology has promoted the growth of opportunities for availing of finances. Here we will discuss Peer to Peer Lending Business model.

Meaning of Peer to Peer Business Lending (P2P Lending)

P2P is a crowd-based system to raise loans, and repayment is done with interest. It is an online system that brings the borrowers and lenders to one platform, thereby matching the demand and supply of the finance. The nature of the funds raised is unsecured. The interest to be paid is either fixed by the online platform or through the mutual agreement between the parties. The platforms earn by charging fees from both the lenders and the borrowers.

The fees paid by the borrowers are either fixed at a flat rate or as a percentage of the loan amount borrowed. The lenders pay an administration fee at a fixed rate or additional fees if they avail any of the additional facilities; such as legal advice, etc.

The platform acts as an intermediary involved in the service of the collection of the loan repayments and assessing the creditworthiness of the borrower. Unlike the normal financial intermediation, the platform does not earn from the spread between lending and deposit rates. RBI[1] regulates the P2P lending.

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Global Scenario

At the end of 2015, the global cumulative lending through the P2P platform was recorded at 4.4 billion GBP, which shows a significant increase from 2.2 million GBP in 2012.

In the global market P2P lending license is perceived differently by different countries:

  1. Exempt market/ lacks definition– In countries such as China, Egypt, and South Korea, P2P lending is either considered as exempt market or there is no definition of it in the legislation. However, certain regulations exist to protect the borrowers from unfair interest rates, unfair credit provision, and false advertising;
  2. Intermediary Regulation– In certain countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Canada and UK, P2P is considered as intermediaries and thereby regulated under the jurisdiction. The regulations establish the prerequisites for the platforms for registration as well as other rules and requirements to determine how the platform should conduct its business;
  3. Banking Regulation– In territories such as France, Germany, and Italy, P2P lending platforms are regulated as banks due to their credit intermediation function. Hence, they are required to be registered as banks.
  4. US Model-In United States of America, two frameworks exists- one at the national level through Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the other at the state level. Certain states outrightly ban such lending, while the other put a limit on the number of funds being raised.
  5. Prohibited– The countries like Israel and Japan have banned P2P lending in their legislation.

Also, Read: How to Obtain NBFC License in India?.

P2P Lending in India

The Peer to Peer business lending model is growing at a faster rate in India also. Many of the P2P lending platforms in India are concentrated on the micro-finance activities catering to the financial needs of the small entrepreneurs and unorganized sectors. The main advantage of this model of finance is that the borrowers get funds at comparatively lower rates, while the lenders get a better return on their investment as compared to other conventional lending methods.

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Although there is no credible data available on the P2P Lending business in India, still, as per newspaper reports, there are around 30 new startup P2P lending companies in India.

Working on a P2P Model in India

In India, mostly the tech companies registered under the Companies Act, are involved in the activity of P2P lending. They act as an aggregator between lenders and borrowers. The borrower and lender register themselves with the platform, after which due diligence is carried out and those found suitable are allowed to participate in the activities of borrowing and lending.

Several other services such as credit assessment, advisory, recovery, etc. are also provided by these online platforms. Moreover, the documentation service is also managed by the platform. The amount of the loan is transferred from the lender’s bank account to the borrower’s bank account and the platform collects post-dated cheques from the borrower in the name of the lender, thereby helping the recovery process.


The P2P model is striving to make a significant place for itself in the financial market. Peer to peer business loans can be of great help for those businesses that cannot qualify for a traditional loan but can still get a competitive interest rate.

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