In Europe, London tends to grab most of the fintech limelight but other tech hubs in the continent are producing their fair share of fintech companies with comparative success, not least in Germany. Enter Hamburg-based Finanzcheck, the consumer loans marketplace, which today is disclosing it has closed €33 million in Series C funding.
The round was led by growth-investor HarbourVest, with participation by Acton Capital Partners, and existing backer Highland Europe. Finanzcheck says it will use the new capital to consolidate its claimed leadership position in Germany’s €70 billion consumer loan market, as well to accelerate growth and roll out new products. The company has brokered more than €1.3 billion in consumer loans since being founded in 2012.
The problem that Finanzcheck has set out to solve is to reduce the time it takes and complexity of shopping around for an appropriate loan, including actually applying for said loan.
In Germany alone this might involve looking at the products of 50 or more banks, each of which has very different ‘score cards’ that would determine if a loan is issued, says Finanzcheck founder and CEO Moritz Thiele. The startup’s platform aims to make this process infinitely more efficient and transparent.
“Instead of undergoing this extremely complex and time consuming process, a consumer can simply provide his personal data on Finanzcheck.de once, via one single interface merging all scorecards,” he says.
“We pre-score the client based on our own in-house big data matching algorithms to preselect most suitable banks. Via direct interfaces, deeply integrated into the bank’s IT architecture which enables real-time communication, the client’s data is transferred and the banks now place their loan offer in realtime. Our recommendation engine evaluates these offers and selects the best one for the customer.”
To that end, Finanzcheck compares up to 35 bank and P2P lender’s scorecards, “increasing the matchability of client and bank from 40 per cent to over 85 per cent, which is a big deal if you’ve ever applied for and been turned down for a loan.
“For those clients with a high credit score and multiple scorecard matches, Finanzcheck will provide the offer with the lowest interest rate available to them. In this setup and process we heavily outperform single banks or P2P lenders in Germany,” adds Thiele.