[London, ENGLAND] Online loans provider Moneygator
announced Tuesday it has acquired the operations of
E-Loan UK from E-Loan Inc. in the United States.
The two parties did not disclose the terms of
Established in November 1999, E-Loan UK was a
joint venture between E-Loan Inc. and venture
capitalist eVentures which is jointly owned by
epartners and Softbank.
Despite rapid expansion of U.K. activities during
2000 – including the launch of a specialist car
finance service in September — E-Loan’s investors
decided last year to scale down European operations and
concentrate on the home market.
Moneygator says it will now consolidate the mortgage
operations and re-launch the car finance service in
April, adding many more lenders to the range.
Henning Holter, managing director of Moneygator, claimed
that the whole process of buying personal financial services
online is beginning to take hold. His words were, however,
fairly cautious — “take hold” being not quite the same as
The longer term prospects look promising. Researchers
believe that between 10 and 30 percent of personal financial
services will be originated online within 3-4 years.
“The value and convenience of shopping around on an
independent Web site and then completing an application online
is very compelling to people, especially when supported by
telephone support to answer any questions,” observed Holter.
Holter said that by acquiring E-Loan Inc’s operations in the
U.K., Moneygator will significantly strengthen its position
as the U.K’s top aggregator of credit products on the Internet.
He also pointed out that the car financing technology being
acquired as part of the deal cost over £1 million (US
$1.47 million) to develop.
“Car finance is already a big part of our personal loans
business and we believe this purchase will make us the
leading independent loans originator in this high growth
product category,” said Holter.
Moneygator operates Web sites that have around 0.10
million visitors per month and has processed applications
for mortgages, personal loans and credit cards to a value of
£250 million (US $367 million).
Moneygator’s most recent round of funding was a US $20 million
private placement in April 2000, mostly taken up by Atlas