What happens when you throw a bunch of ex-Googlers into an office in San Mateo California?
Enter Upstart, a new breed lending company that helps financial institutions - credit unions very much included - make more, better unsecured loans and also do auto refinancing.
Upstart comes at lending with a focus on artificial intelligence, machine learning, and doing a lot of data crunching. Using Upstart's analytics an institution approves a higher percentage of loans - but also enjoys a lower default rate.
How can that be? According to Jeff Keltner, who heads business development at Upstart and is himself an ex Googler, lots of models plain look at the wrong data when making credit decisions.
Upstart has a page full of dazzling stats about how its models perform versus traditional lending models. Check it out.
20+ years ago I interviewed the Google founders for MIT's Technology Review magazine. Here's that story.
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