Challenger bank Metro Bank said it had agreed to acquire peer-to-peer lender Retail Money Market, which trades as RateSetter, for up to £12m. The deal included an initial payment of £2.5m, with an additional £0.5m payable 12 months after completion and a further up to £9m on the third anniversary of completion, subject to performance criteria. The acquisition did not include RateSetter's holding in RateSetter Australia, which was being retained by RateSetter shareholders. Metro Bank said RateSetter was the UK's 'most popular' peer-to-peer lender with over 750k people having invested or borrowed through the platform. It reported revenue in the financial year ending 31 March 2019 of £33m, a pre-tax loss of £8m and gross assets of £42m. 'As part of its strategy to enhance returns, Metro Bank has previously signalled its ambition to grow unsecured lending, the company said. 'RateSetter's originating and underwriting capability will enable the bank to rapidly accelerate this ambition via an existing, scalable platform. The deal would be funded from existing cash resources.
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