The Well

Andrew Graham | Blog

How Borrowell is bringing better borrowing to Canadians

March 31, 2015

Why has technology transformed so many other industries, from retail to travel, but financial services have stayed much the same?

That’s the question that got us started at Borrowell. With consumer debt at record levels, we were surprised that there were so few borrowing options for responsible Canadians. On one hand, traditional bank loans usually require a trip into a branch and many people don’t qualify. On the other, credit cards are everywhere but are typically very expensive, with interest rates of 19% or more even for people with great credit histories.

So we asked: could we create a new kind of loan that was simple to apply for yet also fairer and, for responsible borrowers, more affordable than credit cards?

This is how Borrowell was born. We looked at other countries and saw how new kinds of lending were transforming financial services. And we set to work bringing the best of these new approaches to Canada.

How Borrowell is different

At Borrowell, we’ve taken a proven innovation, marketplace lending, and adapted it to Canada. Marketplace lending is part of the sharing economy movement. It’s about connecting individuals who want to borrow with organizations who want to invest. That way, borrowers pay less and investors earn more.

Marketplace lending is a global phenomenon. In the US, companies like Lending Club and Prosper have helped hundreds of thousands of people borrow for less. And there are marketplace lenders in many other countries, from Zopa in the UK to Harmoney in New Zealand.

Now, Borrowell has brought this model to Canada. We’ve partnered with great investors including Equitable Bank and Oakwest Corporation. With their support, and using our proprietary technology, we’re able to offer loans that are simple, secure and convenient. For many people, these rates are lower than those offered by credit cards.

Who are we?

Borrowell is made up of people with deep experience in the financial services industry who believe it can be radically improved. Among the team, we have experts in technology, underwriting and customer service, to name a few areas. (We’re often hiring…If you’ve got a passion for making financial services better, check out our job postings.)

In the coming months, you’ll be hearing more from me and others on the team as we bring our message to more Canadians: better borrowing is possible!

In the meantime, drop us a line or add a comment below if you have questions about how we work or thoughts about the website or our business. We’d love your feedback.

Andrew is CEO of Borrowell. Click here to meet the rest of the Borrowell team. 

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