Virgin Money USA
I wrote a while ago about Virgin USA purchasing a majority stake in CircleLending. I invested in CircleLending while I was at Venrock and remain a personal investor in Virgin Money USA.
Virgin Money USA launched earlier this week. They've continued the great 'friends and family' loans that CircleLending pioneered. The Virgin branding is a great complement to this product space. You may not know it, but Virgin Money is a significant business in the UK, Australia, and South Africa. Although I am sure that they will have unique plans for the US, you can see that Virgin Money UK has a broad range of financial products, including loans, credit cards, insurance, and investment accounts.
The main focus for Virgin Money USA is loans -- business loans, personal loans, mortgages, and reverse mortgages. Check out their site for guides that explain the benefits of keeping these loans within your circle of friends and family.
I think that the financial services industry is ripe for innovative ideas. Virgin is the type of brand that can push new models into an industry that is sometimes slow to change. I look forward to seeing how this plays out.
Congratulations to Asheesh Advani and the Virgin Money USA team for a successful US launch.