The lender is in the process of securing its authorisation from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and hopes to be operating in the residential space by the end of the year.
It has already secured a handful of deals and signed up Active Investments as its first public distribution partner, with more discussions with packagers and distributors under way.
Selina has launched with a flexible drawdown second charge product for business and property investment loans.
Loans are available between £25,000 and £400,000 across the UK and rates start at 4.95 per cent with a maximum loan-to-value (LTV) of 80 per cent.
The lender uses automated valuation models along with affordability assessments and will consider flexibility around minor credit blips in underwriting.
Five deals in two weeks
Selina Finance managing director Michael Biemann told Specialist Lending Solutions that the lender had completed five deals over the last two weeks, ranging from £25,000 to £250,000, and that it was about to close one in the region of £400,000.
Biemann said he believed the product flexibility would prove popular.
“It functions a lot like a line of credit where borrowers get approved up to certain amount and they can withdraw or repay around the term of the plan,” he said.
“This is much more common in North America but for historic reasons it hasn’t typically been offered over here, so we have seen a blank space to do this.”
Biemann sees brokers as very important to the growth of the business, especially with a product that can be a little more complex.
Commission fees are 3.5 per cent, with two per cent paid at loan disbursement and 1.5 per cent after 18 months.
It is also pledging to cut the length of the typical secured loan completion time in half with a fully online process, and has promised to provide smaller loans in as little as two working days.
Expect to be a major player
Biemann explained that there were strong goals for the business.
“We and our investors fully expect Selina to be a major player in the business and consumer lending space,” he said.
“We see there’s absolutely space for building a more compelling option here.
The lender is backed by “a major fintech capital firm and a major property investment fund”, but Biemann could not give any more details.
The first deal it has gone public with is a £250,000 loan to support a management buyout of the USA Summer Camp business, which completed in 10 working days.