Peer-to-Peer Lender SoFi Secures $80 Million in Series C Funding
Discovery Capital Management, Peter Thiel, Wicklow Capital Fuel Expansion Beyond Student Loan Refinancing; Wije Wijegoonaratna Joins Board, Peter Thiel and Duncan Niederauer Added as Advisors
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., April 3, 2014-- Social Finance, Inc. (SoFi.com), a leader in peer-to-peer lending, today announces $80 million in Series C funding, led by Discovery Capital Management, with Peter Thiel, Wicklow Capital and existing investors participating. SoFi will use these funds to expand the footprint of its existing student loan refinancing and extend its product suite for borrowers and investors.
With this funding, Discovery's S.P. "Wije" Wijegoonaratna is joining the company's board and Peter Thiel and Duncan Niederauer, CEO of NYSE, join as company advisors.
"SoFi is creating a better financial marketplace," said Mike Cagney, CEO of SoFi. "By bypassing the banks and directly connecting highly qualified borrowers and investors, we've been able to reduce their costs, improve returns and provide a much better experience than traditional financial services. The Discovery led financing allows us to aggressively build out our marketplace and significantly expand our products and services to members."
Since its launch in 2011, SoFi has funded $450 million in loans to over 5,000 members. SoFi borrowers average over $9,400 in savings by refinancing their student loans and become part of a community with unique benefits. SoFi provides unemployment protection, career services and an entrepreneur program. The entrepreneur program has helped dozens of borrowers start their companies with debt deferment, mentorship and capital. With the new financing, SoFi will expand its loan offerings to include mortgages and personal loans, and bolster the options in which individuals can invest.
"A generation of Americans has deferred their dreams, because they have to service more than a trillion dollars of student loan debt instead. Until college administrators realize how much their tuition hikes hurt students, we need to find innovative ways to make debt more manageable," said Peter Thiel. "SoFi helps borrowers get out from under the crushing burden of debt and begin pursuing their own goals immediately, instead of waiting for a time that never comes."
"We're breaking out of the traditional nameless, faceless financial industry model," continued Cagney. "Our model is based on the tenets of being local, transparent and interactive. By creating a lending ecosystem based on affinity, we're empowering people to invest in each other's success."
For more information on SoFi, visit sofi.com.
SoFi is a leading peer-to-peer lender focused on transforming financial services. SoFi's affinity-based marketplace connects high-quality alumni borrowers and investors directly, benefitting them both by bypassing the banks. Since its launch in 2011, SoFi has funded over $450 million in loans and has more than 5,000 members. To learn more about SoFi, visit sofi.com.
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