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Fintech lender hires CIO following $200m milestone

by James Mitchell11 minute read

An Australian marketplace lender has announced the appointment of a new chief investment officer tasked with building the group’s funding network.

SocietyOne announced this week that John Cummins has joined the group as chief investment officer (CIO).

Mr Cummins will have responsibility for all of SocietyOne’s funding requirements to support demand from an expanding number of borrower customers. This will include building on SocietyOne’s existing network of investor funders which features large financial institutions, mutual banks, credit unions, high net worth individuals and SMSFs.

He also plays a key role in helping the company to achieve its five-year goals of expanding and deepening its funding base to support growth in borrower customers to 100,000 and take a 2-3 per cent share of the $100 billion consumer finance market. He reports directly to SocietyOne’s CEO and managing director, Jason Yetton.

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Prior to joining SocietyOne this month, Mr Cummins was head of markets at fixed-income giant FIIG Securities. He joined FIIG in December 2014 from RBC (Royal Bank of Canada) capital markets where he was the head of FIC for Australia and New Zealand.

His 30-year career has included senior roles at Westpac Institutional Bank, the Royal Bank of Scotland and Macquarie Bank, and has ranged from trading, sales, research, structuring and debt capital markets.

“John has deep and extensive experience of financial markets and the needs of institutional and individual investors with a particular focus on delivering strong, sustainable and high-yielding returns,” SocietyOne chief executive Jason Yetton said.

“In particular, he has specialist knowledge of the fixed income and credit markets which will be of critical importance to our future growth given the opportunities that we offer our growing base of investor funders to earn solid returns from a new asset class,” Mr Yetton said.

“John impressed me from the outset with his confidence in what we are doing and what we looking to achieve and I am delighted he has joined SocietyOne to help us reach our ambitious goals over the coming years.”

Mr Cummins highlighted the success of SocietyOne to date: “From a standing start just four years ago SocietyOne has built not only an attractive proposition for borrowers but an equally significant and impressive opportunity for investor funders to secure good returns.”

“I’m really looking forward to promoting the benefits that we offer investors in an asset class that has traditionally been a very profitable preserve of the banks and helping to grow the company into one of the leading alternative players in the fixed income market,” he said.

SocietyOne announced last month it had reached the milestone of providing $200 million in total lending since its foundation in August 2012, of which $129 million was advanced in 2016 alone.

That represented growth in the loan book of 320 per cent in just 12 months. Meanwhile, borrower customer numbers have since grown to over 8,000.

[Related: Broking in the age of fintech]

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