FintekNews is pleased to offer our weekly feature column “3 Questions”. Each week, we feature a thought leader within a unique sector of fintech and ask them to answer just 3 questions for our audience in their vernacular. This week, we’d like to introduce you to David Haber, CEO & Founder of Bond Street, a startup transforming small business lending through technology, data and design. Bond Street offers entrepreneurs one to three year term loans of up to $1,000,000 with interest rates starting at 6%.
NAME: David Haber
TITLE: CEO & Co-Founder
COMPANY: Bond Street
WEB ADDRESS: www.bondstreet.com
How did you personally become involved in fintech?
I first became interested in fintech while working in venture capital at Spark Capital. I focused primarily on marketplace and financial services, and led investments in companies like Orchard, Plaid and Quantopian, all of which offered a lot of early exposure to the space.
Ultimately, what drove me to leave Spark to start Bond Street was the need I saw in the market from a large number of amazing, fast-growing small businesses who were struggling to raise bank financing. At the same time, I saw many of the financial software companies were beginning to launch APIs which I understood would make data collection and underwriting a more seamless experience from the staid, paper-driven processes at the banks.
What do you believe the next major innovation in financial technology will be and why?
In the online lending world, I think you’re going to see a shift from simply focusing on an individual transaction (be it refinancing, working capital or a growth investment) to companies building technology to create a longer-term and more engaged relationship with their customers. You’re starting to see this—though it’s still very early—with Prosper’s acquisition of Billguard, now Prosper Daily, as well as Affirm’s acquisition of Sweep. In my mind, the way that valuable brands are going to be built in this space over the long run is by competing not just on rate and speed, but also in leveraging technology to provide value to customers beyond the loan.
In Bond Street’s case, we collect so much information across our portfolio; there are many compelling ways to surface those insights to our borrowers to empower them to make better financial decisions and ultimately growth their businesses more strategically. We’re actually in the process of building a software to do exactly that.
What has been the biggest success in your firm to date?
The thing that I’ve enjoyed most about being an entrepreneur (and certainly the biggest success of our firm) has been building our team. I’ve seen firsthand how building a very strong core group of employees builds on itself and pays huge dividends over time. At Bond Street, we’ve brought together an extremely talented, but also diverse set of individuals who each bring something unique to the table. It’s been an incredible experience to see Bond Street grow from a team of three working out of my apartment to nearly 30-strong (and counting)
David Haber is co-founder and CEO of Bond Street, previously worked as a venture investor at Spark Capital where he focused on marketplace and financial technology investments. Before going into VC, David co-founded Locus Analytics, a startup asset management business.