Updated 24 Jan 2017: This post is updated to include Dianrong’s feedback on IPO plan
Chinese online lending platform Dianrong today announced additional Series D round funding of $70 million led by ORIX Asia Capital Limited, a wholly-owned investment vehicle of ORIX Corporation, with the participation of CLSA, the overseas platform of China’s top investment bank CITIC Securities.
This latest investment in Dianrong follows a $220 million Series D round in August 2017 that was led by GIC Private Limited and included CMIG Leasing and Simone Investment Managers. The monster round comes after its $207 million Series C in 2015 that was led by Standard Chartered Private Equity and followed by China Fintech Fund. Investors from earlier funding rounds included Tiger Global Management, AMTD, Northern Lights Venture Capital, and Max Giant.
“ORIX is an amazing company with global reach and a proven commitment to innovation and value creation. We are thrilled to welcome them to Dianrong and look forward to working together to further leverage fintech to better serve the financial needs of small businesses in China and across the region. CLSA is connected to some of the most dynamic companies in Asia and has a growing interest in supporting China’s fintech sector to expand its capabilities. Dianrong shares this commitment and we look forward to working together to help more small enterprises leverage fintech to grow and succeed.”
—Soul Htite, Founder and Executive Chairman of Dianrong
Among the IPO rush of Chinese fintech firms starting in the middle of last year, Dianrong is widely rumored as an IPO candidate. The firm shook up its management last December, where two co-founders Soul Htite and Kevin Guo handed over their duties as co-chief executives. This move has been seen as a step to make itself more attractive to investors in order to prepare for the IPO.
In response to our inquires on IPO plans, the firm answered, “Dianrong is fortunate to be well capitalized and continues to benefit from investors like ORIX and CLSA, who understand fintech and support our growth strategy. That said, we continue to explore all our options in the capital markets and no final decisions have been made.”
Founded in 2012, Dianrong makes loans and sells investment products to individuals and small businesses. The company is often dubbed as Lendingclub of China, not only because it’s founded by Soul Htite, co-founder of U.S.-based LendingClub, but also because it shares a similar business model with the U.S. company.