April was a good month. Profitability has slightly exceeded the levels of March with a 7.61% (versus 7.57%). P2P Crowdlending platforms and P2B Crowdlending platforms platforms have improved their performance over February, to 13.6% and 8.7%, respectively, unlike Real Estate Crowdfunding platforms which have fallen to 3.9%.
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Main news on my portfolio
The main News of the month can be summarized as follows:
- In April I started investing in Kuetzal and Crowdestor
- In February I started investing in WhiskyInvestDirect, a very innovative platform to invest in Scotch whiskey in the process maturation. In a couple of months I will present my assessment and record technique.
- Soon I will add the technical sheets for NEO Finance and Twino.
- I increased my positions Linked Finance, October, Bulkestate, Grupeer ,Inveslar and Housers.
- The best platforms in terms of IRR are 1) real estate: Bricks & People (now operating across the platform) and Estateguru; 2) P2B: Envestio; and 3) P2P: Finbee, NEO Finance and Swaper.
- The best returns for the month were 1) real estate: CrowdEstate and Estateguru; 2) P2B: Envestio; and 3) P2P: Robocash, Finbeeand Twino.
- For Mintos, I present the combined yields (all currencies, taking into account the exchange rate), and for each currency separately (without applying the exchange rate).
- To compare all platforms, go to the Comparator.
- The gray shading indicates inflated returns due to specific promotions, while the yellow shading shows that the returns are likely to be lower due to unpaid or delayed projects without a final decision.
All interests are calculated before deducting taxes.
As for delays and defaults, to highlight:
- Worrying situation in Houserswith one default and thirteen delays.
- Also very worrying is the situation in Flender. There are already four defaults and three delayed projects.
- Brickowner accumulates its first two delays.
- Delays in Estateguru remain as usual around 5% of loans, specifically 6.4%. And the number of defaults has fallen from three to just one.
- Linked Finance increases slightly to two defaults and four delayed projects.
- Delays and defaults of Finbee fall within the expected, being a platform without Buyback. The case of Fellow Finance is a bit more worrying, given that the defaults are not compensated so far with the profitability of the active loans.
- The “delays” of real estate platforms as Inveslar are not surprising either – property sales take time and so far delays are only a couple of months late. In the case of Privalore it starts to be worrisome since they are already delayed for several months and affect 3 of my 6 active investments.
- CrowdEstate does not allow to easily check for delays. There are some, but it is difficult to define how many unless one consults each project one by one.
- To compare all platforms, see my Comparator.
*Variation in the number of active projects from last month; I only include platforms without Buyback; Green if the parameters (delays and defaults) have improved compared to last month and red if they have worsened.
In BrickownerSince all the investments are long-term and paid in full at the end of the project, my profitability remains at zero (since I started operating with the platform in May 2018). In April, I have experienced the first two delays.
In BulkestateSince all my investments are long-term and paid in full at the end of the project (full bullet), I did not see any profitability until December when my first two projects finalized. In January-April, no new project has been completed, which has reduced the XIRR slightly to under 2%. The returns offered are excellent (always above 13%) and historically there is a 0% of defaults, so my strategy is continuing to invest in all new projects. The platform, which isn’t usually too active, has launched four new projects in April. As a result, I increased my position 15.7% last month. Hopefully this trend will continue.
In April, I still could not reinvest all the money in my portfolio, so the yields have fallen compared to February, when I reached the peak of profitability since I use the platform. The net annual return offered by CrowdEstate, taking into account only the returns of projects already reimbursed (20), is 14.1%. Some payments are delayed, but they end up arriving (plus a compensation for the delay).
My strategy is to continue investing in each new project, except those funded in several stages ( “Multiple rounds investing”), as I believe it goes against the principle of diversification. Basically it would mean investing several times on the same project.
In February, CrowdEstate reached 28,200 investors, 140 projects, 58 million raised and a 19.2% historical return.
In Estateguru, since March, the profitability seems to have taken a quantitative leap to be over 9%, and that despite the fact that during the last month I accumulate a considerable Cash Drag. The net annual return offered by the platform, taking into account only the returns of my projects already reimbursed, amounts to an impressive 14.8%. Yields of my projects already reimbursed amounts to an impressive 14.8%.
Delays in Estateguru, remain in their usual figures around 5%, specifically 6.4%, and there are only two defaulted projects.
My strategy is still to invest in each new project, except in those funded through several tiers (in which I only I invest in one, usually the first, of the tiers).
During 2018, EstateGuru financed 356 real estate loans worth € 52.5 million, an increase of more than 225% compared to 2017. Almost € 19 million were returned in issued loans, more than € 3 million were paid in interests and bonds, and generated more than € 73,000 in referral bonuses. The return on repaid loans was 12.02% in 2018. The investor base grew to reach 17,600 registered investors from 109 countries, while also attracting the first institutional investor to the platform.
Rather worrying situation in Housers this month, with one default and thirteen delays, especially in fixed-rate opportunities. Almost all those that ended in the last two months ended up getting delayed. I have decided to reduce my investment in such projects. The saving or investment projects that used to be paid even several months before the projected end, also start to accumulate some delays, moderate so far.
Return rates, somewhat irregular, falls below 4% this month. I have reached the point where the benefits will allow me to invest in each project without the need for new contributions. Although I do not rule out making specific income if the number of projects increases, my intention is not to increase my position in the short or medium term.
In February, Housers launched an excellent promotion: Housers Private Investment. This is a service for those who have completed a minimum investment of € 10,000 on opportunities for sale. Includes access to a manager, attending events … But by far the biggest advantage is the discounted fees (up to 100% for 24 months!): 1) SELECT (10,000 € – 50% off commissions for 12 months); 2) PRIVATE (20,000 € – 100% discount for 12 months); and 3) WEALTH ( 50,000 € – 100% for 24 months). Considering that the commissions of Housers account for 10% of the profits …
In March, Housers exceeded 100,000 users and financed 3 million, for a total of more than 80 million Euro of investment and have returned more than 26 million in interest and capital.
The return rates of Inveslar, which remained constant at around 1.5% seem to have gone up one step in recent months (1.9% in February, thanks to a new sale – the second). Most projects are quite long term (7 of my 16 projects are 36 or 60 months), so the benefits are mainly for rentals. I trust that the rest of the projects (12-14 months) will start getting sold in the coming months (there is a couple that are already due).
Inveslar, like Housers, seems to have definitely shifted in terms of the type of projects offered to fixed rate mortgage loans, as opposed to the savings or investment projects they used to offer.
In April, Inveslar announced that they are in the final phase to be able to publish projects with regulatory coverage within the framework of participatory financing platforms. In order to make the technological connection to operate under regulatory coverage, it will be necessary to transfer user data to the participative financing platform under which it will operate. This fact will provide additional guarantees to users and investors. Inveslar also announces that
in a couple of weeks, after a few weeks of little activity, they will be back on track with new diversified projects, both in terms of assets and geographically.
Privalore, by offering only investment opportunities (rehabilitation), it translates in very unreliable returns. Since over one year (March 2018), the platform offers only opportunities in Madrid, whereas previously it focused exclusively on Barcelona. The biggest downside is that four of my six active investments are quite late (two of them 7 and 9 months late), so I have decided not to invest in any new project until the delayed ones catch up.
Envestio remains the platform with the best return rate (19.2%!). Until recently, all projects offered returns of over 20%. This has changed over the last few months to the current 15-16%. It’s not bad, but we all miss the previous return rates… Please note that almost all the new projects, are actually additional tiers of existing projects (up to thirteen tiers), so investing in them, does not increase diversification. With the returns offered and Buyback (!), I intend to increase my position in the coming months (hoping that the offer will increase).
The biggest drawback is that the success of Envestio translates in new opportunities being sold in a matter of minutes. So I have missed almost all the new projects in March. It seems that Envestio is considering adding an AutoInvest function in the coming months. It would be a very positive change.
There are already six defaults in Flender, plus three other delayed projects. The defaults are not yet recorded as losses. We will still have to wait (probably) several months before knowing how they resolve. Flender has started legal activities to recover them (estimated at a 35% probability). I understand that it falls within the norm, although we are already talking about a default rate of 7.4%, the highest of all platforms, not counting P2P platforms without Buyback.
Throughout 2018, Flender had over 5.5 million EUR invested distributed in 6,400 investment.
The Irish platform is the most active by far of all P2B platforms I use. Yields have been increasing progressively to stabilize around 8% in recent months. It is becoming one of my favorite platforms. Only 3 defaults (out of 443 projects!) and 5 projects with delays. I intend to continue investing in all new projects. In fact, I increased my positions by 3.0% since last month.
In April, Linked Financed reported that during the first quarter of 2019, the platform lent more than €11.3 million to SMEs across Ireland. Total loan origination is now above €92 million, across more than 2,000 loans. Also, there was a reduction in the platform-wide default rate, which fell to 1.05%.
The big problem of October these days are the three projects in process of judicial recovery. Although this can be considered as normal, these incidents have made my XIRR practically nil after over one year of investing in the platform (1.8% to be exact). However, to clarify that, unlike other platforms, October provisions 100% of the amount (since the judicial recovery processes take a long time and the result is unknown). Provisions are potential losses and over time some or all of the amount due may be recovered. The rest of the platforms do not consider such losses until the judicial recovery process ends. Hopefully there will be no more setbacks and my XIRR will gradually recover.
My intention is to continue investing in all the new projects and trust that returns will come back to the expected levels. In fact, I increased my positions by 7.7% last month. In the absence of AutoInvest, you have to be really alert.
In March, October launched a new version of the mobile app that includes a new investment process to manage loans more efficiently. From now on, all loans will be queued following the order of requests and a notification is sent as soon as the operation has been executed.
In April, October has improved the monitoring of delinquent projects. Now, all the information (date of the incidence of payment, cause, number of installments in default …) can be all found in the same place.
Excellent news in Dofinance this month! After 6-7 months with loans at 9% maximum, loans at 11% are back. VIP Dofinance investors can get up to 12% (1% extra) during the first 90 days (10% VIP status) using my promotional LINK . In my case, unfortunately, I will still have to wait a little over three months for my current investments at 9% to end to renew at 11%.
Dofinance represents the maximum of simplicity in the way it operates. Once the target profitability and term have been chosen, our inputs end and there is nothing left to do but wait.
Dofinance in numbers: At the end of 2018, there were 3,514 registered clients, 40% of German investors, followed by Spain (22%), Italy (11%) and the Netherlands (10%). The average investment amount was 2,695 euros and an average period of 6.8 months investment, with a 9% automatic investment as the most popular investment program.
Throughout 2018, the average interest rate grew from 12.78% to 14.3%. Accumulated turnover increased from € 5.2 million to € 54 million (02/15/2019). The volume of investment grew from € 1.4 million in 2017 to € 8.1 (up to 1/12/18). Now Fast Invest has over 30,000 client (15/02/2019).
In March, Fast Invest has launched a new version of its website. No major differences, but more intuitive.
Very disappointing results for the moment. Interest rates are really attractive (up to 55%!), but withoutBuyback, so I’ve been a bit more cautious investing than with other platforms. As of today, the many defaults do not compensate for the higher returns offered, leaving me at the end with negative returns, at least for now. As to my strategyas they offer no Buyback, I have invested only in loans with interest rates above 48% and always the minimal amount, which in the case of Fellow Finance is quite high (25 EUR). I must say that there are other less risky loans, which surely would have resulted in a better performance than my (so far) failed investment strategy. It is a complex platform, and customer service is not particularly good, so I have many doubts about how it works. Surely studying it further can result in better results. I’ll keep playing around without increasing my position hoping to be able to offer a more positive review in the coming months.
Although yields are excellent time (TIR 16.8%), being a platform without BuybackI am still awaiting the evolving platform medium-long term once the (many) defaults stabilize. Overdue and unpaid loans account for 11.0% and 13.3% of my portfolio, respectively. My AutoInvest selects only loans above 18%. For me it makes no sense to invest in loans without Buyback below that figure, considering there are other platforms that offer up to 14-15% with Buyback. For the moment my strategy is to keep my position (reinvesting profits). In a couple of months, once I see at what levels returns stabilize, I will decide whether to increase my position or start withdrawing funds.
In February, FinBee annouced their recovery rates on defaulted loans: 56.15% of the invested money from the insolvent clients from 2016, and 40.21% from 2017 (see graph above). The collection process is not over, so these indicators should continue to grow in the future. This piece of information was missing (in fact I asked about it just few weeks ago), which will be key to evaluate what to expect in the coming months and decide my future investment strategy.
However, one month later, FinBee announced that they decided to compensate 30% of defaulted loans. What it is no clear to me now is if investors will no longer get back their investment if defaulted loans are eventually recovered at a later stage.
FinBee is associated since early 2018 with DESICO, a collective funding platform for worldwide companies to market their converted titles into tokens. On April 30, Finbee started a public offering of Paysera securities on the FinBee Business Platform. Paysera is an electronic payment company with more than 15 years of activity. The Paysera Group employs more than 150 employees serving customers from 140 countries around the world. Paysera has nearly 400,000 thousand customers, who made 1,87 million transfers in 30 different currencies in 2018.
During 2018, Finbee lent over 8 million EUR to Lithuanian residents and companies, earning 1.4 million euros for investors. Also, Finbee successfully passed the annual inspection of the Bank of Lithuania and established itself as the only P2P finance company that lends to small and medium enterprises. And it seems that business is going well for Finbee. January was a record month, when private and commercial loans issued amounted to 980.795 euros.
One of my favorite platforms with consistent results and returns always between 13 and 15%, although the average interest of loans has decreased and we no longer see loans at 14 or 15% as we used to. This month I have increased my positions by 5.0%.
As of 10th of January 2019, the owner of Grupeer platform is Grupeer Limited, which is registered and based in Ireland (instead of Alla Kisika).
In January, Grupeer announced that it will soon present the Grupeer Stability Fund, which will literally allow to buy a square meter on a real estate property. In this way, an investor will own a fraction in an office building or any other development project that already generates income. After investing in this product, the client will receive a stable rental income of 4% to 8% per annum. It is aimed at investors with a very long investment horizon who wish to receive stable income over a prolonged period.
In April, Grupeer updated its AutoInvest strategy, adding a new feature for selecting CashBack offers. By clicking the “Including CashBack” option, the Auto-invest algorithm will search the projects matching your interest rate criteria taking into account the available CashBack offers to invest your money into. For example, if you set your minimal interest rate as 14% and there is a CashBack offer 1% on a project yielding 13%, the Auto-invest strategy will treat this project as 14% (13%+1%) and will invest your money in this deal, if the “Including CashBack” option is chosen.[
Since March, there are three new loan originators:
- A24 Finance, which offers loans that are fully covered by collateral. These loans will be marked by the “umbrella” icon, meaning that besides the BuyBack guarantee there will be an additional protection against defaults.
- Polish Mikrokasa, a micro crediting company founded in 2006.
- Ibancar has been operating since 2010 offering business loans to buy cars in Spain, with BuyBack Guarantee, at a 11-12% return rate and 24-37 term.
In April, two new loan originators entered Grupeer:
- PlanetaCash is a Russia-based micro lending company founded in 2018, focusing solely on online business loans from 30 to 400 Euro, with BuyBack Guarantee, interest rate of 13 %, and a term of 14 months.
- Bosak Microfinance Bank is a Nigerian company offering micro loans for people living close to poverty line. Founded in December 2009, Bosak Business loans come with a BuyBack Guarantee, 11 % interest rate, and a term of 4 months.
When presenting my results, Mintos is more complicated since I invest in five different currencies. The graph shows in red the combined results of the platform (converting each currency to EUR according to the exchange rate of each month). This means that monthly profitability is very susceptible to variations in exchange rates.
The best XIRR (at the moment) are for my investments in Russian rubles (RUB – 16.8%) and EUR (16.5%; thanks still to the excellent promotions at the beginning of 2018).
The maximum interests offered by loans in EUR each day have increased to 14-15.1% this month. Since October I invest manually, both in the primary and secondary markets.
The interest offered by loans in Tenges (KAZ) and rubles (RUB) remain stable between 17 and 19%. Usually there are always available both in the primary and secondary markets.
The loans in sterling pounds (GBP) and Georgian laris (GEL), are scarce lately in both the primary and secondary market, but 2-3 times a month, new loans are offered, so the problem of Cash Drag is not important.
- Kredit Pintar, an application for loans in Southeast Asia, operating since September 2017 and issued more than 12,000 consumer loans short term in Indonesia (EUR 50 on average, net annualized returns of up to 12% Buyback) daily.
- JSC MFC Mikro Kapital (Mikro Kapital) allowed to invest in commercial loans from Russia, both in euros and rubles, with average annual net income up 9% for loans in euros and 15% for RUB loans and buyback guarantee (Buyback). MINTOS’s rating is A-.
Other originators already present in Mintos have expanded their range of products in April:
- IuteCredit has expanded its market presence by launching car loans issued by Moldova, as well as personal loans and also offered in Moldova. They are loans in EUR issued in Moldova by an average of 4 000 EUR, at an interest rate of 11%; and buyback guarantee (Buyback).
- Mogo, the largest non-bank auto loan financer in the Baltics, has placed its auto loans issued in Armenia with expected annual net income up 12%.
- ID Finance has expanded its presence in the market with the launch of MINTOS short-term loans from its lending business in Mexico. You can obtain net annual returns of up to 10% for loans up to USD 600 euros (EUR) and to 18% for loans in Mexican pesos (MXN), all with buyback guarantee.
In March, the Mintos Rating has been updated for six loan originators on the Mintos marketplace: Aforti Finance, Capital Service, AASA Sweden, Hipocredit Latvia, Hipocredit Lithuania, ID Finance Georgia and Lendo based on 2018 third-quarter results and industry insights.
Mintos has announced that in the future, they will offer personal accounts (with IBAN) and debit cards. The personal account can be used to make and receive payments around the world, or receive the salary directly into the account by Mintos. But this was announced months ago and there has been no further update since.
Mintos has exceeded 2 billion Euro in investments (April 2019) to become the largest market for investment in loans in Europe (according to P2P-Banking), they have hired 28 new workers to almost double their workforce, they have reached 124,872 investors ( April 2018), have raised 5 million euros in a round of financing, have incorporated 31 new originators from 13 new countries, and investors have received 38.8 million in interest (April 2018).
In April, MINTOS launched the Impact Fund MINTOS. The first initiative will be cleaning the Baltic Sea with Pasaules Dabas Fonds (WWF associate partner) and WWF Deutschland, where together with investors, MINTOS financed with funds to donate 100,000 euros to the project.
In March, Mintos updated its Rating for some originators, the first time ratings have changed since its release in August 2018. The modified ratings were Aforti Finance, Capital Service, AASA Sweden, Hipocredit Latvia, Lithuanian Hypocredit, ID Finance Georgia and Lendo. The Mintos rating for these originators was modified based on the results of the third quarter of 2018 and the industry outlook, resulting in an increase in ratings in some cases, and reductions in the case of Aforti Finance, AASA Sweden and Lendo. Unfortunately, due to a technical failure, loans from Aforti Finance, AASA Sweden and Lendo were completely removed from all AutoInvest portfolios, regardless of what has been chosen as your risk preference. If you still want to invest in loans from those originators who have their grade changed, all you have to do is put them back in your portfolio in the AutoInvest settings..
Without offering spectacular returns, Peerberry compensates it with an amazing regularity (return rates always between 11 and 12%), minimum follow-up needed and zero Cash Drag. I intend to keep my position as long as everything stays like this.
In February, Peerberry launched two new originators: 1) Credit7 (Aventus Group) from the Republic of Moldova and established in 2017, which is a short-term loan provider with 12% annual return; and 2) Gofingo.com.ua (the private holding company – Gofingo, LLC) from Ukraine, which offers loans in Euro with a net annual return of 12%. Peerberry offers loans from 18 originators in 8 countries.
Peerberry in figures: In March, Peerberry achieved a volume of loans of 9.2 million and reached 6,000 investors from 59 countries that can invest in Polish, Czech, Danish, Lithuanian, Ukrainian and Russian loans . Most loans last less than 40 days.
The interests of the first large bunch of one-year loans have been paid, causing a spectacular jump in April’s return rate: up to 19.3%! This is because the interest on longer-term loans (180-365 days) is paid at the end, so the XIRR does not reflect the real profitability of the platform (which should be in my case 11.7%).
Robocash continues with its excellent regularity after overcoming the problems of Cash Drag last summer. Since November, all loans are at 12%, compared with 14% previously. At the moment, my strategy is to maintain my current position.
Robocash will relocate its activities to Zagreb, Croatia by March 28, 2019 in order to facilitate further dynamic growth of the platform. The only change is that Robocash will now be operating under Robocash d.o.o., a limited liability company registered in Croatia for the purpose of due regulation. There will be no changes regarding investment methods, functionality of the platform or existing interest rates.
In April, Robocash announced a Loyalty Programme for investors. Investors with ID>1,000 will receive increased interest for 3 months (from 1 September to 30 November 2019) given that they keep from 1,000 EUR on the platform from June 1, 2019 to August 31, 2019. The bonus will be accrued according to the investor’s category, which corresponds to the investor’s minimum balance as of June 1, 2019:
The first 1,000 investors joined the platform (not my case) will receive a guaranteed bonus of 0.3% from September 1, 2019 until January 31, 2020, regardless of your balance.
Swaper seems to have definitely solved the problems of Cash Drag and the XIRR are getting progressively closer to 14% (13.5% in April). My strategy consists of maintaining my current positions or even increasing them if the Cash Drag problems do not return.
Until now it was a platform of moderate returns with excellent regularity, without Cash Drag that required a minimum follow-up. During the last few months, on top of this, there’s been a gradual improvement in the return rates, reaching values of over 13% since January (except for a brief drop in March, when I increased my positions in 9%).
Unlike other platforms, Viainvest withhold taxes. I present tax-free results to facilitate comparison.
The VIA SMS Group unaudited consolidated financial report for the year of 2018 has been published! You can browse through the report on VIA SMS Group website, or you can take a look at it on the website of Nasdaq Baltic.
Loan browsing filters have been upgraded. There is now an option to filter all available loans based on the remaining loan term, and from now on, the loan term will be displayed in days instead of months. This also applies to auto invest settings.
In April, Viainvest mobile app has been made available for investors to download.[
The situation is similar to that of Viainvest. For the last month, I only invest in loans at 14% (and some at 15%), so I hope that the monthly returns will continue to increase next month.
And in March, the number of originators continues to increase until reaching 17 originators in 10 countries with the addition of the Polish KFP24. Established in 2014, KFP24 offers loans to small and medium-sized businesses from 2,300 to 23,000 EUR and a term of 3 to 24 months.
From April, in cooperation with Spanish lenders (Twinero, Presto and Seymoure), taxes on interest earned will be withheld at source (19%), meaning that you will receive net interest. When reporting your taxes, you can generate a Tax Report under your Account Statement. The bottom line “Taxes Withheld” indicates the cumulative withheld amount for the period. This will be deducted from your total earnings and it will indicate what is the remaining gross amount you have received and on which you have to pay the taxes on.
Evolution of my positions
As for the evolution of my positions since January 2018 per type of investment, they remains more or less constant.