Avant, the online lender, has raised $139m in debt led by Jefferies and another $200m in debt co-led by J.P. Morgan and Credit Suisse. Avant’s total funding raised is now over $1b in debt financing and $334m in equity financing. The lender is going to need it as it looks to compete directly with Lending Club.
Avant want to focus to the U.S. and U.K. middle class, with loans ranging from $1,000 to $35,000. The average loan size is $8,000. This year, Avant expects to loan $2 billion, quadruple the $500 million it loaned in 2014. By comparison, Lending Club issued $2 billion in loans in the second quarter. But with the Jeffries transaction, a large financial institution is actually going to start selling the debt to others, a vote in Avant’s strength as a reliable lender. This also marks the first time a financial institution is securitizing Avant’s loans.... Goldstein said that while Avant focuses on personal loans, the lending site will eventually expand to auto, credit card, student loans, and mortgages. He added that he’s in no rush to take Avant public, but that at some point it will be a public company.