Thursday, June 21, 2007

Facebook lending club

I in no way deny that I don't fully get Facebook. I have all sorts of issues with sharing a lot of personal information online. Maybe I'm just not a social network kind of girl.

I briefly signed up a couple of years ago thinking that I might participate as an alumna of UCLA -- where_ are_ the folks I went to graduate school with? -- but there wasn't much activity and I never checked in. While I have an archived email message that I registered, I just tried to log in and my email comes up as unregistered. Maybe I had my account deleted? I don't remember.

But this phenomenon really interests me -- Facebook Lending Club. Here's the page on how it works:

It's person-to-person "social lending," using the Facebook platform to enable lenders to find borrowers and vice-versa. Would-be borrowers fill out an application in Facebook and request to borrow between $1,000 and $25,000. Lending Club analyzes their credit rating and suggests an interest rate between approximately 7 and 12 percent if the person meets risk standards. Lenders who sign up enter in the amount they’re willing to loan and the interest rate they want. Lending Club takes advantage of Facebook's data about group memberships and personal connections in its “LendingMatch” technology to then pair the lender and borrower based on the shared connections it finds.

This is a really interesting model. A friend of mine participates in Kiva, which makes person-to-person microloans to support entrepreneurial businesses. A small amount of money -- $25 or $5,000 -- can change a person's life.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the write up. I hope you joined up on Facebook. You really need to get in and see how it works. Plenty of information available on our blog, the FB forum, etc...

Rex Dixon
Director of Social Media Content
Lending Club