LendIt 2014 opened with a bang on Sunday night as Lending Club hosted a cocktail party for more than 300 conference attendees. Lending Club COO Scott Sanborn offered a welcome toast, opening with this question: “Remember back when the idea of people lending money to other people over the internet sounded crazy? It wasn’t that long ago.” In introducing Peter Renton, founder of LendAcademy and the LendIt conference, Sanborn noted that when Renton first broached the idea of a conference back in 2013, he and others at Lending Club agreed to sponsor it but wondered how many people would come.
The first LendIt conference in NY last year sold out well in advance, and LendIt 2014 in San Francisco opened today to more than 900 attendees. In his opening Renton noted that out of the thousands of individual investors who had helped build this industry, only a few hundred had managed to make the trip. With new companies coming into the mix, new products coming out, and announcements of industry developments, such as Lending Club’s strategic alliance with Union Bank, it’s a really exciting time for the industry.
One of the keys to the industry’s success are the thousands of individual retail investors who have invested their hard-earned dollars to facilitate loans to borrowers. Their participation in marketplace lending and in Lending Club specifically is a huge factor in the company’s industry-leading standing.
We know many retail investors weren’t able to travel to LendIt, so we thought we’d post a few photos here for those of you who had to miss it. We’d also like to offer a toast:
To all of you who have helped and will continue to help build this vibrant community, thanks for your partnership.
With thanks from the Lending Club Team –