China: The Largest Internet Finance Market in the World

China: The Largest Internet Finance Market in the World panel at LendIt USA 2015 with Greg Gibb, Chairman & CEO of Lufax; Soul Htite, Co-Founder & CEO of Dianrong; Ning Tang, Founder & CEO of CreditEase; Dr. Zane Wang, Founder & CEO of China Rapid Finance; Daniel Wu, General Manager of Tencent Tenpay; and moderator Jason Jones, Co-Founder & Partner of Lend Academy.

LendIt was honored to welcome the biggest online lenders in the world to close out the first day of main stage panels. Peer to peer pioneer Ning Tang, who founded China’s first online lending organization, Credit Ease, to help students in 2006 said his company has now shifted into the wealth management of the middle class and looks forward to a future of big data.

China’s online marketplace is currently valued at some $20 billion. But the growth is not over yet, as Dr. Zane Wang of China Rapid Finance described the 500m people in China who do not have any credit coverage. Regulation proved not such a thorny topic and was broadly welcomed by panelists, especially Greg Gibb of Lufax China, who said it would be useful. Competition, he said, would be the main driver of growth. Ning Tang expanded that, “A multi-tiered free market will be very helpful”.

Mobile platforms were seen as essential to tackling fraud, not least, according to Daniel Wu of Tencent Tenpay, because they facilitate such wide-scale interactivity and market research. Alternatively, Gibb identified mobile communications as being most powerful for referrals.

On the subject of wealth management, the main difference between the Chinese and the US and European environments was the lack of institutions. Soul Htite of Dianrong reminded the conference that in China, p2p entrepreneurs had to build an ecosystem, not just a platform.

Looking to the future, Htite was confidant that the banks would emerge with strong online products rather than existing players in the online marketplace becoming banks. And Dr. Wang boldly anticipated 5m borrowers in 5 years.