“People’s financial lives are fluid and our financial system is rigid,” explains Jerry Nemorin, co-founder and CEO of LendStreet, a data-driven lender that helps Americans manage their debt and rebuild credit. LendStreet is tackling America’s enormous consumer debt problem with a “solution to build a bridge between the bank and [the average consumer].” In episode eight of VentureKast: Rebuild, Jerry shares insights about the limitations of traditional lenders to account for shocks like the COVID-19 pandemic and sheds light on the need for more flexible restructuring of debt. COVID-19 has been a significant test for LendStreet and although “we are going through a pandemic … [our] customer base continues to perform similarly in this environment.” LendStreet’s focus on understanding consumer financial behavior and leveraging that data to structure payments based on capacity is proving to be an effective approach.
“As you can imagine, with the pandemic it is absolutely a time for growth, there are a whole lot more people looking for services like ours in this environment,” explains Jerry. As consumers face new financial strains, LendStreet has adjusted their offerings to meet the evolving needs of their customers by providing forbearance and reduction in payments. Ultimately, Jerry believes that the pandemic has and will continue to expose the inefficacies of the currently rigid financial system. “As long as we acknowledge and understand that consumers’ financial lives are fluid … we will see more solutions that are focused on that fluidity and solving for rigidity in our system.”