SHANGHAI--(BUSINESS WIRE)--China Rapid Finance Limited (“CRF” or the “Company”), a leading online consumer lending marketplace, bolstered its commitment to corporate governance, regulatory compliance and transparency with the addition of acclaimed author and financial expert Huaqiao (Joe) Zhang to its board.
Mr. Zhang, 52, who is currently the chairman of Hong Kong-listed China Smartpay, has been appointed as an independent non-executive director on CRF’s board. Previously, he had served as an advisor to the Company since August 2013.
“The addition of Joe Zhang to our board will aid the Company in our aim to grow as a leading consumer lending marketplace that’s focused on strict risk management, transparency, and business innovation,” said Dr. Zane Wang, CEO of the Company.
“I have strong belief that with its innovative technology and multi data, multi channel strategy, as well as its rigorous risk management practices, China Rapid Finance has unparalleled advantage to thrive in this huge, untapped market." Mr. Zhang said. "I'm glad I can join China Rapid Finance to contribute my experience to its promising development in the future."
CRF aims at bringing affordable consumer credit to EMMAs, which are defined as Emerging Middle-class, Mobile Active consumers in China. There are 500 million such people, with quality employment, yet no credit record in the People’s Bank of China, which means they cannot get access to traditional credit service from banks.
Mr. Zhang brings to CRF’s board a wealth of industry knowledge and experience after having spent more than two decades in investment banking and finance. Prior to working at China Smartpay, Mr. Zhang served as the Chairman of Wansui Microcredit Company in Guangzhou from 2011-12. His work was recognized by The Microcredit Association of China, which named Mr. Zhang "Microcredit Person of the Year" in January 2012.
From 2006 to 2008, Mr. Zhang was the chief operating officer of Shenzhen Investment Limited. Earlier, he worked for various investment banks for 15 years, including 11 years with UBS as a banker and head of China Research. While at UBS in 2001, he became well known for publishing research that highlighted the weak governance and financial reporting issues of some companies listed on the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong. From 1986 to 1989, Mr. Zhang worked as a manager at the People's Bank of China.
Mr. Zhang is also the author of the bestseller Inside China's Shadow Banking: The Next Subprime Crisis, which was published in 2013. He has authored numerous articles that have appeared over the past two decades in publications including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Bloomberg and South China Morning Post.
Mr. Zhang received a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Hubei Institute of Economics and Finance, a master’s degree in Economics from the PBOC Finance Institute and a master’s degree in Economics from the Australian National University.
About China Rapid Finance
China Rapid Finance Limited began its operations in 2001, and is the largest online consumer lending marketplace serving China’s emerging middle class in terms of total number of loans. The Company is a recognized innovator with a proprietary Big Data analytics technology platform. The Company has a proven track record in credit risk management and transparency, and has facilitated more than 5 million loans to-date.