Daniel Rajkumar

on the rebuildingsociety.com blog

02nd Nov, 2017

NorthInvest Leeds and Yorkshire FinTech Summit

On Tuesday, 14th November, the NorthInvest Leeds and Yorkshire FinTech Summit will be taking place at the KPMG offices in Leeds city centre. Daniel Rajkumar will be speaking at the breakfast event, which is scheduled to begin at 8:00am and end at 9:30am.

The summit is designed to bring together industry leaders from the region. Hosted by NorthInvest, in partnership with KPMG and Leeds City Council, the event will focus on creating a mandate for the establishing of a clear plan of action. Presentations, discussion and debates will be the first step in opening dialogue, and attendees will hear from FinTech experts and key players within the industry.

The event is a great opportunity to promote various FinTech opportunities in the region to interested parties, including prospective investors.

“I am very excited to be speaking at another event that focuses on the potential of FinTech in the north. We need to pool resources and create an open dialogue that can lead to collaboration,” Daniel explained.

Sign up for a place at the NorthInvest FinTech Summit soon to avoid disappointment!


25th Oct, 2017

CrowdConference 2017

Given our experience in the FinTech sector; not only in operating a P2B lending platform, but also building and maintaining client crowdfunding platforms; we and our sister company, White Label Crowdfunding, were invited to the third CrowdConference in Minsk. Daniel Rajkumar, founder and CEO of the two companies, represented the companies at the event, accompanied by Kylie Greeff, our Legal and Compliance Manager.

It was a dynamic, well-attended event, attended by a broad range of international entrepreneurs, government delegates, academics and traditional financiers. Day one of the conference focused on the current hot topics of AI, Big Data and Blockchain in FinTech, whilst day two concentrated on The Crowd Economy. Attendees enjoyed talks from of Mariya Dokshina, founder of Russian crowdfunding firm, Boomstarter; Andrey Golub, CEO of virtual reality company, ELSE Corp; and Dariusz Jemielniak, a member of the board of trustees of Wikimedia Foundation.

Crowdfunding in Belarus is growing fast, but is arguably a few years behind that of the more mature European market members. Currently, crowdfunding in Belarus is largely limited to reward-based crowdfunding, and its development appears to be closely linked to the development of the same market in Russia.

The enthusiasm and engagement of the delegates and speakers at the CrowdConference bodes well for the future of the Belarussian crowdfunding and Fintech industry. Daniel commented: “I am looking forward to working closely with a number of the contacts we made at the event. We hope to further grow our network of platforms and international partners, and develop new features that will continue to give our clients a leading edge when setting up their own platform.”


25th Oct, 2017

The Pace of Change in Financial Services

Last week, rebuildingsociety’s founder and CEO, Daniel Rajkumar, and Legal and Compliance Manager, Kylie Greeff, attended the 6th ECN Crowdfunding Convention in Vilnius, Lithuania.

The conference centred on the rise of new technologies for accessing finance, and featured presentations and panels from members of the international financial community.

Daniel was invited to take part in a panel on the topic: How are the banks and traditional financial actors reacting to a new paradigm of online access to finance? On the panel alongside Daniel were Jekaterina Govina, Counsellor to the Board of the Bank of Lithuania; Lasse Maekela, CEO of Invesdor; Mantas Zalatorius, Chairman of the Lithuanian Banks Association; and Yoann Nesme of PPL, a Portuguese rewards-based crowdfunding platform.

The panel, split between those associated with “old finance,” or traditional financial institutions, and those associated with “new finance,” enjoyed a very animated and direct discussion which was very well received by the audience.

It is evident within the finance sector that there is an increasing merge of old finance and new; many peer-to-peer platforms rely significantly on the engagement of old finance, for example, through the investment of institutional investors. Likewise, some old finance institutions are starting to consider new and innovative ways to improve their products and services for their existing clientele. As such, the main lines of discussion and debate at the event focused on whether traditional financial institutions are truly committed to, and open-minded about, working with and developing relationships with FinTech companies.

Daniel explained that banks in the UK have been obliged to collaborate with P2P platforms through the Business Referral Scheme. He commented that this program is widely considered to be ineffective, not only in terms of helping businesses find the right type of finance when rejected by the banks; but also in that the platforms by and large do not get access to the cream of the crop. The sentiment exists that the banks want to be seen to be new and customer friendly, but have not actually moved very far beyond a degree of marketing and PR spin.

Jekaterina said that she felt that the banks are moving towards closer collaboration with FinTechs, but that it almost seems like they are going through a cycle similar to the five stages of grief. “A few years ago, the banks were definitely in a state of denial about the potential of FinTech companies – particularly crowdfunding companies,” she explained. This was followed by a short period of anger and retort against such newcomers, and they are now, slowly, moving towards a state of acceptance.

Mantas, who has been brought in to his current position to accelerate the banks through the five-stage cycle, agrees that change within the banking industry across Europe is needed. He stated that recently, FinTech has been the only thing in financial services to drive the change; that the increasing integration and use of sophisticated software within traditional finance products has made the industry “flatter and more even”. He said that the industry desperately needs the “cooperation of the old guys and the creativity of the new guys,” and believes that the banks are making significant steps towards adopting the change.

Daniel disagreed with Mantas; he believes that the banks don’t really want to change, and that they aren’t “willing to self-sacrifice, like Amazon did with book sales for the Kindle.” He predicted that “we’ll see internet and tech companies becoming the new banks, just like we saw tech companies become the new music and film producers,” going on to highlight that if the banks need an example of what their future might look like, they only need to look to China and Alibaba’s Alipay and Yu’E Bao. “The future might be nearer than expected for the banks, with the release of the Payment Services Directive (PSD2) Regulations in early 2018,” Dan observed.

ECN 2017 2

Mantas agreed, saying: “PSD2 is something that the banks will have to get used to, and get used to quickly – which will be hard due to the slow nature of the banks.” However, he did go on to add a word of warning, explaining that while there is no doubt that PSD2 will bring a very high level of change and innovation, such a significant level of change in an industry that is slow to react, such as the finance industry, could risk breaking the current system completely, which would be a disaster not only for the banks but also many of the FinTech companies trying to make it in such a new sector.

“PSD2 will take away the advantage that the banks have had over FinTechs for so long,” commented Dan. “The live data will help more crowdfunding companies apply more intricate risk analysis models and implement better risk monitoring, and also allow these platforms and the consumers lending through them to better price the risk.”

It is clear to anyone familiar with the financial services market that there is a huge amount of change taking place, and that a large factor driving this change is an increased awareness and understanding of financial products – and their rights – on behalf of the consumer. More and more consumers do not want to have to visit a bank branch, instead expecting to be able to manage their finances from their smartphone while on the go.

Given the amount of data that consumers are willing to give away about themselves, knowingly or unknowingly, it is certain that data will drive innovation and change in the FinTech and crowdfunding sector for the foreseeable future. As such, the firms that survive will be those that are willing to change and adapt. For the first time in decades, it seems that the crowd and consumers are driving the changes of the financial institutions, but one must ask – in which direction? The thought of a company like Facebook entering the financial sector is no longer unrealistic. It may not be something that we would readily encourage or relish; but that doesn’t mean it won’t happen…


27th Sep, 2017

Daniel Rajkumar to Speak at Crowdfunding Convention

rebuildingsociety.com founder and Managing Director, Daniel Rajkumar, will speak at next month’s 6th ECN Crowdfunding Convention in Lithuania. The event, which will focus on New Technologies for Accessing Finance, is scheduled to take place at the Sapiegos Tech Park in Vilnius on the 19th and 20th October.

Dan-RajkumarDaniel will talk about launching a P2P lending platform on a budget, citing his experience when he founded rebuildingsociety.com. He will be explaining some of the challenges a business can face, commenting on technical considerations and advising on how to devise and implement marketing strategies while on a budget. “I’m very much looking forward to the event, it will be my first trip to Lithuania and I’m always keen to connect with my ECN friends and find out about their successes and challenges,” Daniel commented. “Conventions like this are a great way of speaking to other industry players, hearing from experts and meeting likeminded professionals,” he continued.

The European Crowdfunding Network was founded in 2011 with the aim of creating a professional network that would work towards promoting adequate transparency, regulation and governance. Incorporated as an international not-for-profit organisation in 2013, the network facilitates a combined voice in policy discussion and public opinion building.

Find out more about the event on the official ECN Crowdfunding Convention website.


09th Dec, 2013

The Mail on Sunday 08/12/2013

rebuildingsociety.com was featured in the Mail on Sunday and the Mail Online following some research on business savings rates.

Businesses are being urged to beat falling savings rates and help the economy by investing in other small firms to earn themselves higher returns.

The average rate of interest paid on business accounts with a balance of £10,000 has fallen by nearly a third in the past year, from 2.34 per cent in December 2012 to 1.6 per cent today, figures show.

With small and medium sized-firms holding close to £126 billion in current and deposit accounts, this equates to a loss of about £931 million in interest before tax annually. 

(more…)


08th Oct, 2013

rebuildingsociety.com borrower tells his story to the Financial Times

Click here to read the article

Gavin Armstrong of GRA Project Management Ltd has been interviewed by the Financial Times for a piece about peer-to-peer lending.

It’s a great story, Gavin’s £50K loan has allowed the company to boost turnover significantly and he has made all his repayments in time.

In fact, GRA Project Management Ltd plans to apply for another loan shortly – look out for this opportunity.

rebuildingsociety.com founder Daniel Rajkumar was also interviewed and Suleman Akhtar, a current lender explained why he is backing the industry.

You can read the full article here (you must have a basic FT subscription to view the article, but these are free).


03rd May, 2013

rebuildingsociety.com makes TV debut

Today saw the BBC Look North cameras descend on rebuildingsociety.com towers for an interview with Dan about peer-to-business lending.

In conjunction with Exquisite Handmade Cakes Ltd, a borrower through the site, the story focuses on why Yorkshire businesses only have a 29 per cent approval rate with the banks in the region, versus an average of around 50 per cent of businesses throughout the rest of the UK.

Exquisite Handmade Cakes Ltd is the second Yorkshire business to have an application funded through rebuildingsociety.com, with Integral IT Ltd based in Ripon completing a £20,000 loan last week.

Of course, the beauty of an online business is that your customers can come from anywhere, they just need an internet connection, but it’s good to feel like you’re helping out your local community. We believe this is the next stage of peer-to-business lending, a localisation of borrowing and lending so people can see the physical results of their help in job creation, money being spent in local shops and local economies thriving.

It’s small at the moment, but the potential is huge.

See if any of our borrowers are local to you by visiting the Marketplace.


16th Apr, 2013

Yorkshire Post 16/04/13

By Suzan Uzel. Published on 16/04/2013 00:01

EXQUISITE Handmade Cakes is seeking to raise £50,000 to finance the purchase of new machinery via peer-to-peer online business lending platform rebuildingsociety.com.

Daniel Rajkumar & Viv Parry

The Leeds-based cake maker, which was founded by Viv Parry in 2004 and employs 30 people, hopes to generate extra sales by investing in a fully automated cake cutting machine.

Exquisite Handmade Cakes is “at a critical growth stage”, said Ms Parry, adding that she expects to grow its £1.6m annual turnover by 10 per cent this year.Ms Parry said the business “hit a brick wall” in its efforts to borrow from traditional lenders. “There’s a very poor attitude out there at the minute. No-one wants to take a risk on anything,” she said.

(more…)


08th Feb, 2013

Join us at Crowdfunding Deep Impact

rebuildingsociety.com will be speaking and exhibiting at the Crowdfunding Deep Impact Conference on 26 February, the UK’s first crowdfunding conference, at the University of Hertfordshire.

This conference should be of interest to anyone involved in the crowdfunding movement and associated industries (peer-to-peer and peer-to-business lending) and we’re delighted to be able to offer half-price tickets to rebuildingsociety.com members who want to attend.

(more…)


17th Oct, 2012

Press Release: Nigel Payne Joins rebuildingsociety.com

rebuildingsociety.com, the peer-to-business lending platform, has announced the appointment of Nigel Payne, the former MD of BM Solutions and Assurant Intermediary as a non-executive director for its introducer channel.

Payne has joined former HML and Mortgages PLC marketing director Julian Wells to help the peer-to-business lending site generate borrower leads through adviser referrals.

Payne said: “I am delighted to be joining a really innovative and exciting venture in rebuildingsociety.com. In today’s market where the major lenders are restricting their lending, such innovative approaches to finding new sources of funds for quality businesses that are looking to grow should be applauded.”

rebuildingsociety.com pays advisers 1.5 per cent on completed deals and takes on businesses currently trading profitably with two years of filed accounts. It then promotes the opportunity through its website to a network of investors who pledge small amounts to create a secured or unsecured loan.

Daniel Rajkumar, rebuildingsociety.com’s managing director added: “Nigel’s connections and reputation in the introducer market will help get across the benefits and credibility of our proposition to advisers. With Nigel and Julian leading our campaign, we’ll be able to create strong long-term relationships with advisers and help their clients access finance.”

rebuildingsociety.com will be exhibiting at the Mortgage Expo in London on 14 and 15 November.


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