Cambridge is at the heart of an exciting UK-China initiative to create what the partners believe is a world first crowdfunding index on a massive scale.
BBD, which has its R & D nervecentre in Cambridge, and city neighbour Crowdsurfer have joined forces with Zhejiang University Academy of Internet Finance to launch the Global Crowdfunding Index.
It aims to capture information from thousands of platforms worldwide – enabling investors to access reliable information, assess investment opportunities and manage risks.
The index will embrace a diversity of sub-sectors, including donation, reward, and equity crowdfunding, peer to peer lending, invoice trading and increasingly, real estate finance.
Development worldwide in this segment has been phenomenal. In China, in 2015 alone the alternative finance market grew 312 per cent and exceeded USD $100 billion. And in Europe, the UK has taken the lead, with well-developed equity and debt crowd finance markets. Globally, excluding China, an estimated $100bn has passed through platforms since its inception.
There are currently an estimated 5,000 established crowd finance platforms, and an average of 50 new platforms being launched each month worldwide.
This dramatic growth makes new approaches to analysis and information provision essential to enable investors, entrepreneurs and governments to optimise the direction and evolution of this young new industry.
Helen Wang, CEO of BBD UK which has offices in St John’s Innovation Centre, said: “The partners collectively offer an industrial leadership spread across big data analytics, research and development and information technology in crowdfunding and are unleashing a revolutionary product that is going to shape the future of the financial industry.”
Emily Mackay, CEO of Crowdsurfer, added: “This index is going to be the world’s first true measure of online marketplace-based finance in all its forms. We’re proud to be bringing our detailed industry data expertise and big data analytics technology to this new partnership.”
Crowdsurfer is building a trusted, data intelligence service for the global ‘crowd’ finance phenomenon. It provides those who seek to participate in or serve the industry with the market intelligence they need to be successful. Using big data engineering and machine learning, the company maps, augments and interprets the information provided by hundreds of finance platforms globally spanning equity, debt (P2P), rewards, donations and other forms of marketplace-based financial transactions.
BBD UK is a China-rooted big data FinTech company specialising in Index products; its real-time big data driven approach helps investors, regulators and policymakers gain an insight into economic trends.
Headquartered in Chengdu in China, BBD’s UK operation was established in 2016 with a front office in London and R & D centre in Cambridge. The Academy of Internet Finance at Zhejiang University is headquartered in Hangzhou – one of the foremost FinTech hubs in China and globally.
The first, and broadest, interdisciplinary research institute of its kind in China, AIF boasts unrivalled connectivity with industry and government.
For more details about the new crowdfunding index or to get involved in the initiative, contact Wenru Dai at BBD UK via email: daiwenru [at] bbdservice.com
• PHOTOGRAPH: Signing are Professor Ben Shenglin of Zhejiang University Academy of Internet Finance, Helen Wang, BBD UK CEO and Richard Baker – chairman of Crowdsurfer – witnessed by BBD UK chair Alan Barrell (Back row second left) and dignitaries from AIF and Tianfu International Fund Town.