Bringing an Innovative Crowdfunding Platform to Market with Mendix

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Looking to build a complete crowdfunding platform focused on the financing of established entrepreneurs, Collin Crowdfund turned to the Mendix platform and Mendix partner Appronto. In just five months, the entire system, including multiple integration points, was delivered.

Now, the financing and investment process is fully automated and all stakeholders – entrepreneurs, investors and ‘Crowdfund Coaches’ – are optimally facilitated through the online platform.

Challenge

Collin’s founders believe that financing – particularly in terms of SMEs – will undergo a transition from a monopolist source of funding to a marketplace of different funding sources. To drive the necessary change themselves, they left the banking industry and began focusing on crowdfunding. Their goal was to create an online platform that facilitates direct contact between investors and entrepreneurs, eliminating the intermediation of financial institutions.

To do this, Collin Crowdfund needed the most modern and efficient platform possible. The whole process had to be largely automated—from loan application and screening, to completion of the financing. This high degree of automation would enable the company’s crowdfund coaches to focus their efforts where they add the most value: the personal guidance of entrepreneurs.

Solution

Because a complete bank facility had to be built, Collin chose to develop and realize the online platform using the Mendix rapid application development platform. The speed at which the application could be developed with Mendix ensured the company that the Collin Crowdfund Platform could launch quickly. In addition, Mendix offered a high degree of flexibility to build STP (Straight Through Processing). Lastly, the platform is extremely stable and secure.

Collin Crowdfund worked together with Mendix implementation partner Appronto. Using the Mendix platform, the online crowdfunding platform was developed and delivered within five months. Thanks to Mendix, business and IT were able to collaborate closely in short development sprints, iterating towards a highquality finished product.

Results

Today, the online Collin Crowdfund platform manages the entire financing process and all steps from loan application and screening, to completion and management of the financing, are fully automated. The platform is also fully approved by the AFM (Financial Markets Authority).

Investors can invest a portion of their assets in the form of crowdfunding and companies with financing needs between € 50,000 – € 2.5 million can apply for a loan.

The loan application process includes automatic cross-checks between Bank payment, Dunn & Bradstreet, passport/driving license, authority to sign, creditworthiness and person authentication. Moreover, there is a management environment containing over 100 standard e-mails that are sent automatically at various times depending on the progress of the application.

For borrowers and investors, there is twofactor authentication. Investors can select projects based on specific criteria (for example, all applications with more than 8% return in retail). In addition, they can manage their current accounts and contracts from concluded loans. A monthly repayment by the lender and distribution of funds to the accounts of all borrowers is also possible through the platform. Finally, there is internal and external reporting of all funds to and from the borrowers.

To date, more than €2 million in funding has been placed online using the Collin Crowdfund platform. In many cases, the complete funding was brought together in a matter of hours.

According to Jeroen ter Huurne, Managing Director, Collin Crowdfund, “Without the knowledgeable and dedicated teamwork of Appronto and Mendix, there is no way we could have built a complete ‘Bank facility’ in less than half a year. It simply wouldn’t have been possible using alternative approaches.”