As always, I begin with the evolution of my positions since January 2018 depending on the type of investment.
The distribution of my investments by category remains more or less constant. The most notable is the increase in the proportion of my stock market investments, due to the strong rise in the markets during February.
In February, my investments in participatory platforms can be summarized as follows:
- In November I began to invest in two new platforms: NEO Finance and Twino. In a couple of months I will present my assessment of them.
- I increased my positions in Brickowner, Grupeer, Flender, Fast Invest, Inveslar and Viventor.
- The best platforms in terms of XIRR are 1) real estate: Bricks & People (now operating through the SociosInversores.com platform) and CrowdEstate; 2) P2B: Flender; and 3) P2P: NEO Finance, Finbee and Swaper.
- The best return rates in December have been 1) real estate: CrowdEstate and Estateguru; 2) P2B: Flender; and 3) P2P: Finbee, NEO Finance and Viainvest.
- 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, see my 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.
February's return rate exceeds December with 8.07% (versus 6.75%). The P2P Crowdlending platforms and P2B crowdlending have improved their profitability compared to December to 13.42 and 9.15%, respectively, unlike those of Real Estate Crowdfunding platforms which have dropped to 4.15%.
As for delays and defaults, to highlight:
- Worrying situation in Housers, with one default and four delays in fixed rate projects, plus two delays in investment projects (the first I experience since I started using the platform in 2016).
- To the second default in Flender (defaults reach now 4.3% of my projects) four more delays have been added (9.8% of projects).
- Delays in Estategururemain as usual around 5% of loans, 6.5% to be precise. No new default this month (remains in three since December).
- Linked Finance has one default and 3 delays like in January.
- 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 becoming worrying as they are already several months late and affecting 4 of my 7 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 unpaid) have improved compared to last month and red if they have worsened.
Since 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 Decemberwhen my first two projects finalized. In January a new project ended and none in February, so the IRR decreased slightly to 4.6%. The returns offered are excellent (always above 13%) and historically there is 0% default rate, so I will continue investing in all new projects. Unfortunately, the platform is not too active, with only one new project per month, so I have not been able to increase my position for months now.
Good news about CrowdEstate! In February, several projects have been settled, firing the monthly returns and TIR to their highest since I started using the platform (13.3% and 7.6% respectively). The net annual yield offered by the platform, taking into account only income from my projects already recovered (16) is 13.7%. About half of my portfolio are projects that are paid in full at the end and now that my portfolio has reached a degree of maturity, I am confident that these level will stay. Some payments are delayed, but end up arriving (plus the corresponding compensation for the delay).
A new feature of CrowdEstate (since November) is the possibility to invest (or not) in projects financed in several stages ( "Multiple rounds investing"). I decided not to invest in second rounds, as I believe it goes against the principle of diversification. Basically it would mean investing several times on the same project.
My strategy is to continue investing in each new project.
In February, CrowdEstate reached 28,200 investors, 140 projects, 58 million raised and 19.2% return rate.
February revenues have decreased when compared to January, down to 5.3%. The net annual yield offered by the platform, taking into account only income from projects already recovered (41), amounts to an impressive 17.6%.
Delays in Estategururemain as usual around 5% of loans, 6.5% to be precise. No new default this month (remains in three since December). If they materialize, it will have a very negative effect on the performance. Defaults do not mean that the investment is lost, but are in the process of recovering the warranty. I am informed by Estateguruthat so far, investors have not lost any of their investments in the platform.
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 a default and four delays in fixed-rate opportunities, plus another two delays in investment projects (the first I've experienced since I started using the platform in 2016). I have decided to reduce my investment in fixed rate projects. On the other hand, surprisingly, the saving or investment projects are still really punctual and in fact, in general, they get finalized several months before the projected date.
Profitability, somewhat irregular this month, remains at 4.2%. I've reached the point where the benefits will allow me to invest on each project without further deposits. Although I don't rule out making additional deposits if new projects became available, my intention is not to increase my position in the short or medium term, and perhaps even reduce it.
For several months now, I invest half for the projects in Madrid, which were clearly over-represented in my portfolio, reaching more than 50%, coupled with the recurrent news of the overheated housing market in Madrid (and other major cities in Spain like Barcelona or Mallorca).
In February, Housers It has 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 € à 50% off commissions for 12 months); 2) Private (> 20,000 € à 100% discount for 12 months); and 3) WEALTH (> 50,000 € -¿ 100% for 24 months). Given that the commissions Housers account for 10% of the profits ...
Also in February, there was a second promotion for which, during a week, when investing in any of the projects in the financing phase, you received a 2% cashback.
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.
Privalore, by offering only investment opportunities (rehabilitation), offers very unreliable returns. Since March 2018, the platform offers only opportunities in Madrid, whereas previously it focused exclusively on Barcelona. The biggest downside is that four of my seven 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. In any case, the platform has only offered two new project since early October, and it takes several weeks to get them fully financed, in contrast to just a few hours some months ago.
Envestio remains the platform with the best return rate (19.0%!). 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).
Besides the second defaulted project in Flender, there are four other delayed projects. Defaults do not count as losses yet. We still have to wait (probably) several months before we know how it resolves. 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 4.1%, the highest of all the platforms, not counting P2P platforms without Buyback. If it exceeds 5%, I would consider stopping investing for a while.
The positive news of February was the brief offer of a 10% cash back for all investments of 1000 EUR or more. I increased my positions to take advantage of it, which implies investing a lot more in one project than I usually do. I hope it won't be one of the project that joins the list of defaults... This has translated into a new peak in profitability, similar to August 2018.
As a result, the IRR also increases again. My intention is to continue investing in all the new projects.
In February, Flender added risk category to projects based on each company's performance during the credit review process done by Flender, with a grade ranging from "A", which represents the lowest risk, to "V" for young companies that have been operating for less than 2 years.
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 one default (out of 370 projects!) and 3 projects with delays. I intend to continue to invest in all new projects. In fact, I increased my positions by 7.3% last month.
The main problem of October to this day are the two projects in the process of judicial recovery from August and November: Technofirst (interestingly my first project) and A&A Marketing Service. Although this is normal, these incidents have made my IRR practically nil after almost a year of investing in the platform (0.8% to be precise). 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. Since there is no AutoInvest, you must be really alert.
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. The great disadvantage is that, for six months now, the maximum profitability offered by Dofinance went down from 12 to 9%, which has translated into a gradual readjustment to the downside of my TIR.
9% is quite low for a P2P platform, but using my promotional LINK promotional, you'll get 10% (instead of 9%) during the first 90 days (10% VIP status). The functioning of the platform is really effective and simple and it helps me to diversify my portfolio. So far, my idea is to hold my current position, hoping that in the not too distant future past returns will be back.
In January, Dofinance He introduced a new operator: Credo data Indonesia, which has been operating for almost three years with a volume of nearly 1,000,000 registered customers. The company issues loans for a maximum period of 30 days Indonesian Rupiah (IDR) from 300,000 to 8,000,000 IDR.
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.
Fast Invest is one of my favorite platforms. In February, unfortunately, we have stopped seeing loans at 15% as we used to. Even so, I continue to increase my positions (9.8% in February), so the returns have not yet reached their potential (which should be around 14.5%).
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).
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 the current yields are excellent (an IRR of 17.4%), being a platform without Buyback, I am still aware of how the platform evolves in the medium-long term once the (numerous) defaults stabilize. Delayed and unpaid loans represent 12.0% and 10.9% 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 (Mintos, Fast Invest or Grupeer). 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.
FinBee has announced that they have been working since early 2018 on DESICO, a collective funding platform for worldwide companies to market their converted titles into tokens.
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. There was a small problem of Cash Drag in November that is definitively solved, although the average interest of loans has decreased and we no longer see loans at 14 or 15% as we used to. In February, I increased my positions by 15.5%.
- Kviku (probably familiar to Mintos users), is an online credit platform founded in 2013 and with presence in Russia, Kazakhstan and Spain that expects to expand during 2019 to Poland, Vietnam and the Philippines.
- Fintech NordCard, based in Latvia, offers short-term loans of up to 3,000 EUR.
Also in January, Grupeer announced it will soon introduce its Stability Fund ( Grupeer, that will allow, literally, to buy a square meter in 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.
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 IRR (for the moment) are for my investments in EUR (17.9%, thanks still to the excellent promotions from February to May of Mogo, Getbucks and Lendo) and Kazakh Tenge (KAZ - 16.7%).
The maximum yields offered by loans in EUR continue to oscillate, from 11.5-13% during November, to 14% in January y again 13% in February. 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 18.5%. Usually there are always available both in the primary and secondary markets.
Loans in sterling pounds (GBP) and Georgian lari (GEL) are in short supply both in the primary and secondary markets, particularly GBP.
In December I started investing in Russian rubles (RUB). The returns have been slow to take off until this month (18.7%), when the Buyback was activated after 60 days (since two thirds of the loans accumulate delays, similar to what happened to me with KAZ loans).
The profitability of loans in Tenges (KAZ) Kazakhstan have declined to 10.3% in February because I doubled my positions (117.8%).
In January, Monego started operating in Mintos with its short term loans in Kosovo ranging from 20 to 300 euros with a maturity of up to 30 days. The installment loans, which Monego will offer later, will have a maturity of up to 12 months for loans loan will be up to 1000 EUR.
In February, Gofingo.kz from Kazakhstan joint the list of originators, offering to earn up to 12% for short-term loans from 16 to 350 Euro, all secured with 100% buyback guarantee. Gofingo.kz successfully operates in the Czech Republic, Denmark, Lithuania and Ukraine since 2015.
Another addition was Dineo, a company based in Spain and founded in 2014, offering Spain-issued short-term loans (5 to 30 days) from EUR 50 to EUR 500 and a 60-day Buyback.
Finally, also in February, EuroOne has changed its name to Rapido Finance.
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.
During 2018, Mintos has exceeded 1,500 million EUR in investments 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 registered 55,000 new investors to reach 100 000 investors, have raised 5 million EUR in a round of financing, have incorporated 31 new originators from 13 new countries, and investors have received 20.9 million in interest.
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 January, Peerberry It anució a new loan originator Aventus Group: Ukrainian car rental company Auto Money. Auto loans will range between EUR 2,000 and EUR 15,000, with terms of 12 to 72 months 12.2% to 13%.
And in February, the addition of new originators has continued:
- Slon Credit from Ukraine (Aventus Group) was established in October of 2018. It offers long-term instalment loans from 1000 UAH to 20000 UAH (from 33 EUR to 656 EUR) of 3 to 12 months at a 12.2% interest rate.
- Kredit7.kz is one of the fastest growing short-term consumer lenders in Kazakhstan. Launched in October of 2017, during 2018, Kredit7 issued short-term Kazakhstan-issued loans of up to 352 EUR at up to 12% return.
- Auto-leasing company Automoney.kz, which operates in Kazakhstan since October 2018. The company issues car loans between 500 Eur and 12,000 Euro, terms from 3 to 36 months and a return rate between 12.2% and 13%.
Now Peerberry It offers loans of 17 originators in 8 countries.
On October 31st, Peerberry celebrated its first anniversary. Peerberry in numbers: In January, Peerberry achieved a volume of loans of 7.7 million and 4,503 investors (732 more than last month) from 59 countries that can invest in Polish, Czech, Danish, Lithuanian, Ukrainian and Russian loans. Most loans last less than 40 days. Finally, also in February, Peerberry changed CEO.
The problem of Cash Drag experienced last summer, which exceeded at times the 50%, are now definitively overcome with the incorporation of new originators. Since November, all loans are offered at 12%, compared to 14% previously. Another important point is that the interests of the longer term loans (180-365 days) are paid at the end, so the return rate does not reflect the real profitability of the platform (which should be in my case to 11.4% ). For now, my strategy is to maintain my current position.
In recent months, two new originators joined the platform: LLP Z-Finance of Kazakhstan and MFC Zaymer of Russia . As of today, Robocash has reached 4,500 registered users, the volume of investments has exceeded 4 million, and has generated profits of nearly half a million Euro.
Swaper, after three months with returns over 16% (thanks to the 2% extra profitability for amounts invested above 5000 EUR), has seen a drop since December. The reason is the continuing problem of Cash Drag which has hovered at around 15-20% all month). Nevertheless, yields remain more than acceptable, so for the time being, my strategy is to maintain my current position.
Until now it was a platform with moderate returns and an 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. If such performance is maintained over next month, I will surely increase my position.
Unlike other platforms, Viainvest withhold taxes. I present tax-free results to facilitate comparison. From 1 December 2018, Viainvest has announced that such tax withholding is no longer automatically applied to the income of loans originated in Poland by VIA SMS PL Sp. For investments in loans originated in Spain or the Czech Republic, withholding will continue to apply.
From January, Viainvest has a new loan originator Sweden: loans credit lines issued by the Swedish VIACONTO.se be available on the platform with an annual interest rate of 9% and buyback. earned income tax shall not apply to invest in Swedish loans on the platform. VIACONTO.se operates on the Swedish market since 2011 with a score of 9.3 on Trustpilot confidence.
The situation is similar to that of Viainvest. In recent months, return rates have continued to grow: up to 14.1% in Januaryso in February I decided to increase my position by 9.1%.
In January, Viventor added a new loan originator Macedonia: Forza. Founded in 2016, the company has issued around 35,000 short term consumer loans ranging from 50 € to 500 € with a term of 7 to 30 days.
And in February, the number of originators continues increasing to reach 17 originators in 10 countries with the addition of:
- Kviku. Founded in 2013, the Cyprus-based company provides instant credit solutions to consumers in Russia, Kazakhstan and Spain. Loans are 15€ up to 1500 € with a term of 2 to 12 month, 8-10% return rate and 60-day Buyback. Currently the company has issued and serviced more than 400’000 loans, worth more than EUR 20 million.
- MyCredit from Kazakhstan. Established in 2018, MyCredit offers loans from 50€ to 350€ with the term from 7 to 30 days.