Alt Lending Week Ended 15th April 2022


Old Lady’s head of Fintech leaves to Join Crypto firm amid exodus from establishment to Start ups

Looking for the pot of gold? The other day I took a look at the fintech articles in the Alt lending sphere and over half of them were actually about Crypto. Apparently investors are already more interested in Crypto assets than in traditional shares. To be honest I find this extraordinary. After all real companies tend to do real things like manufacture things, provide services,  grow food or propel us toward new zero. What do crypto currency companies do? I’m not really sure that I know. They make some people lots of money and lose it for lots of others. Their success or failure doesn’t have anything to do with reality just the whims of people with a lot of money in the first place. On top of that they consume a huge amount of energy to provide absolutely nothing at all. I know I am a crypto sceptic but when it looks like it doesn’t exist then it probably doesn’t. If all the crypto experts could explain to me why their euphemistic coins are worth so much I just might listen but providing an alternative store of value for value’s sake doesn’t cut it for me. If all this crypto money were channeled into productive working assets. We’d all be a lot richer and greener.

Klarna’s vision for Banking services.

BNPL lender Klarna’s chief executive’s vision of the future is revolutionary and to my mind quite disturbing. He expects the global banking market to shrink over time and to consolidate to around five very large global players of which, he hopes Klarna will be one. He is obviously a smart guy and the trend towards consolidation in all sectors is probably correct in today’s world but it all sounds a bit dystopian to me. The only way that goods and services evolve is through competitive offerings and it is difficult to see how that will happen through consolidation. Klarna has developed a market niche but it has only reinvented something which existed in a past life. Nothing is new in finance except the ability of the market to monetize more and more asset classes, identify the connections between those asset classes and provide the ability to make money from those connections. I have recently invested in a company that is recommissioning redundant hydrocarbon wells into geothermal provision. It is the financial markets that will make this possible through extremely smart people. All other services will have to be provided at practically zero cost.  Don’t find that too interesting?


Ex Goldman Sachs people are frequently in the news.

Roger Ng previously Goldman Sachs’ top banker in Malaysia has been convicted by a US Jury of violating an anti corruption law and now faces a possible 30 years in goal. This is one of the worlds largest ever financial scandals that also involved Mr. Ng’s former boss Tim Leissner, who admitted to similar charges four years ago. In the same edition of the Times last Saturday there was a story about Goldman Sachs shareholders being advised by Governance gurus Glass Lewis to vote against special  remuneration packages to two of GS’s senior executives. I don’t wish to comment on either of these stories except to say that I often wonder what some of these bankers want out of life and that the name of Goldman Sachs and ex Goldman Sachs employees are too frequently tied up with financial scandals. Are these guys really the Masters of the Universe. About time for a Bonfire of the Vanities.


Howard Tolman is a well-known banker, technologist and entrepreneur in London,We have a self imposed constraint of 3 news stories per week because we serve busy senior  Fintech leaders who just want succinct and important information. For context on Alt Lending please read the Interview with Howard Tolman about the future of Alt Lending and read articles tagged Alt Lending in our archives.

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