Small business lender Prospa hit the ASX today – and its shares soared

- June 11, 2019 2 MIN READ

Prospa co-founders Beau Bertoli and Greg Moshal

Fintech startup Prospa (ASX: PGL) has turned into a nice little earner for its key investors, AustralianSuper and Airtree Ventures, with shares in the online small business lender soaring 18% on debut on the ASX at noon today.

The jump added $110 million to Prospa’s market cap after it raised $109.6 million from 29 million shares at $3.78. The shares began trading at $4.50, went as high as $4.55 within the first 60 minutes of trade, with around 2.3 million shares changing hands.

The company, worth $609.9 million at the IPO price, now sits at $719 million.

AirTree Ventures backed the business in 2015 when it was just two years old.

Australia’s largest superannuation fund, AustralianSuper, London-based VC firm Entrée Capital and SquarePeg Capital are also on the Prospa shareholder register.

Entrée Capital gave co-founders Greg Moshal and Beau Bertoli the seed funds needed for the duo to write their first loan of $20,000.

In March, Prospa announced it had made a total $1 billion in loans to 19,000 small businesses.

This was Prospa’s second listing attempt to float, nearly 12 months to the day after the fintech startup suddenly pulled a $148 million IPO just 15 minutes before it was set to list amid questions from corporate regulator ASIC.

The business was valued at $576 million 12 months ago.

A majority of funds raised will go towards the equity portion of the growing loan book and working capital, investment in new products and geographies and to repay corporate debt. The company expanded into New Zealand last year and recently launched a new $2,000 to $25,000 Line of Credit for small business, as well as “Prospa Pay” a Buy-Now-Pay-Later B2B payments solution for small businesses.

Shares owned by Entrée Capital, Moshal and Bertoli are subject to escrow until the Company’s financial results for FY2020 are released to the ASX. Square Peg and Airtree are subject to escrow until the ASX has the FY20 half year accounts to 31 Dec, 2019.