Ronan Horgan watched on with envy as all his friends caught the triathlon buzz. He wanted to join them in both the events and also the accompanying afterparties, but there was one crucial problem: he couldn’t swim. So, as he approached his fortieth birthday, Horgan literally took the plunge with swimming lessons. Since then, he has “completed, not competed” in more than 25 events.
Given Horgan has advanced €550 million in loans to Irish businesses though his non-bank lender Capitalflow, learning how to swim might seem trivial. Yet the process taught the Dublin banker-turned-entrepreneur some valuable life lessons.
“You always break down the challenge for a triathlon into parts,” he says. “That way it is easier to get over each hurdle – this is similar in business. It takes time to make progress and to meet your full potential.”
Over the course of the interview, Horgan talks about:
- The pitch to Pollen Street Capital
- Expanding from leasing to invoice discounting to property
- Developing a digital platform
- The rise of challenger banks
- How the banks forgot about business lending
- Regulating alternative lenders
- The impact of Covid-19 on its loan book
- Raising funds from the SBCI
- Expansion and the future
You can read the full interview on The Currency