FutureWire - futurism and emerging technology

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Peer-to-Peer Banking

The creators of UK-based Zopa have combined social networking and peer-to-peer principles to allow users to be both bankers and banking customers. Zopa has introduced peer-to-peer banking, in which members can lend and borrow money to and from other members. Money is distributed among multiple borrowers to decrease the risk of defaults. Rates of return for lenders can range from 6 to 9 percent, depending on the credit-worthiness of the borrowers that each lender chooses to work with.

If Zopa can negotiate banking regulations, it can spread to other countries, including the US. Nonetheless, Zopa is an example of a new business model made possible by the Internet and dynamic pricing technologies pioneered by eBay and others.

Source: Business 2.0