I want to make sure that, as LendingMemo gets going, we take a moment to say who we are indebted to. When I first heard about peer to peer lending, it was a result of reading about it through one of the earthier finance blogs. I was curious about it, largely because I had been doggedly pursuing avenues of investment that were socially responsible, and had failed to really find what I was looking for. As I searched for more information, a site named The Social Lending Network came up, a blog by someone named Peter Renton. I began to explore it in earnest, and two years later I still reading it every morning.
Peter’s writing introduced me to pretty much everything: from loan grades, to filtering, to diversification. Through his instructional blog I opened my very first accounts (my earliest filters followed this article of his and simply invested in borrowers with zero inquires). These early efforts were met with great success, and encouraged me to keep going. Eventually my participation evolved into fascination, which has manifested itself into this new website. Without him, LendingMemo would not be launching today.
What I enjoy about Peter is his ability to see potential. Nobody else had such an early ability to understand peer to peer lending for the miracle it was while also acting on a desire to teach others about its benefits online. Peruse his articles, you will find a collection of peer to peer lending news and strategies that were released long before they became public knowledge (ie: the XIRR methods for calculating interest). Besides him, I don’t know anybody else who actually owns notes held through their entire 3-year term, certainly not me. As a result, Peter speaks with an unparalleled authority in this field.
Here’s something I love about reading LendAcademy’s articles: they are delivered by the voice of an expert — just what the public needs within a new field of investment. This is probably where Peter and myself are so different. If you can’t already tell, my style of writing is more narrative driven (so I think there will be plenty of space for us both). While I lean into its social responsibility, the reality is that peer to peer lending is a deeply structured process of statistics and financial terminology, of regulators and venture capitalists, and us early-adopters have sorely needed leaders like Peter to understand the confluence of parties that are still positioning themselves within these platforms.
The final thing I want to mention about Peter Renton is his intentionality and kindness, something all of us within the peer to peer community have found deeply refreshing. Peter is great at cultivating relationships within Lending Club and Prosper, giving us, his readers, access to information found no where else. To top it off, Peter responds to every person who emails him. Every one. He even agreed to take time over his Christmas vacation to read a rough draft of my eBook, offering valuable corrections that I followed through to the letter.
Without Peter, this site would not exist, and many of us would not be getting these great returns. Through his confidence, many of us feel safe investing in platforms that are not yet cash flow positive. Not only have his efforts made him the most trusted voice in peer to peer lending today, but thousands of unseen lenders have been enabled to flourish in peer to peer lending, lenders Peter will never meet and whose success he will never have the chance to enjoy.
Today is different. In time, after many of us have securely entered retirement through a peer to peer IRA and are able to relax with our loved ones close by, we will still be reaping rewards from his effort. For that I want to say: thanks Peter.
You can follow Peter Renton’s blog Lend Academy at www.lendacademy.com.