Jieyue: Exploring Peer-to-Peer Finance
Beijing Jieyue United Information Consulting Co., Ltd. (Jieyue), a Chinese peer-to-peer (P2P) company established in mid-2013, offered financial services to investors through wealth management stores and an online service platform-xiangshang360.com. The platform served online customers, while the stores focused on those who had no interest in managing their wealth online. For borrowers, Jieyue provided offline services only, and it also performed credit checking through offline channels. Jieyue believed that the offline channels, particularly in third-, fourth-, and fifth-tier cities, could be the foundation for its sustained development, as well as a barrier for competitors. However, China's P2P industry was facing the toughest regulatory supervision in history in 2016, and it was estimated that only 10 per cent of P2P companies could survive the increased regulatory supervision. Jieyue needed to make a decision: should it revise its business strictly according to the supervision rules or should it follow its original direction with a few minor adjustments to its business? Yan Gong and Zhu Qiong are affiliated with China Europe International Business School.