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1. UK – P2P
Assetz Capital reports it has facilitated £300 million in loans on its secondary market since its launch. The company said this was evidence of the demand by investors for liquidity ahead of natural loan repayments, and the matching demand for buying investors. The liquidity feature provides an exit opportunity for investors in need of cash prior to the end of the term of the loan.
2. UK – Equity
“A Newton Aycliffe software business which has developed a platform to help businesses protect their staff and assets has launched a crowdfunding pitch for £400,000 to further develop its technology.
Intelligence Fusion (IF) provides companies in the private and public sector with global situational awareness services.
It is a portfolio company of GrowthCapitalVentures, a fund managed by Maven Capital Partners, and was founded by intelligence and security expert Michael McCabe.
IF is seeking £400,000 via Crowdcube. If the campaign is successful, the funding will support the development of its technology, including the installation of new products and features.”
3. UK – EIS
“The main reason is to see how it can replace inflows from the European Investment Fund (EIF), a European Union agency effectively funded by member states. The EIF has been an important backer of British venture capital and accounted for more than a third of investment in UK-based institutional venture capital funds between 2011 and 2015.
So far, so good - but the consultation is also reviewing the effectiveness of the UK venture capital schemes - venture capital trusts (VCTs), the Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS), Seed EISs and , SEIS, VCT, EIS and social investment tax relief.
As we have written for Professional Adviser more than once, following the 2015 changes to the rules that cover the government's venture capital schemes, more capital than ever is flowing from these schemes into growth businesses.
Yet the government wants more changes and some of the feedback coming out of recent meetings suggest that is exactly what is coming - perhaps regardless of the feedback from the industry.”
4. US – SMEs/AltFi
Biz2Credit has announced the release of its latest monthly analysis, which revealed that Business loan approval rates at big banks ($10 billion-plus in assets) hit another post-recession high in September 2017.
Crowdfundinsider reports: “According to the report, Small business loan approval rates at big banks improved two-tenths of a percent to 24.8% in September, up from 24.6% in August and setting another new high for the Biz2Credit Index. Meanwhile, approval percentages at small banks also rose one-tenth of a percent last month to 49.1%, a slight uptick from August’s 49.0% figure.”
5. US – FinTechAltFi
“Eidoo has launched a new “blockchain asset experience,” designed with the goal to create a secure way for the masses to buy, sell, store, transfer and exchange blockchain-based digital assets. Eidoo’s integrated multi-currency wallet, hybrid exchange and Initial Coin Offering (ICO) engine is said to be a single “clean and easy-to-use mobile app.” Initially catering for Ethereum and all ERC20 tokens, Eidoo plans to add Bitcoin by Q1 2018 and will cater for many more cryptocurrencies in the future.”
“While some financial regulators have simply stopped Initial Coin Offerings (ICO) or slowed activity in the cryptocurrency space, others have been more receptive towards embracing change and recognizing the fact you need to be more innovative. The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) is one of the regulatory entities that have been diplomatic in their approach, noting that if you are issuing a security it will be regulated but also voicing their interest in adapting to digital coins.
Via Twitter yesterday, the OSC stated, “In light of recent inquiries, we wanted to share some thoughts on cryptocurrency offerings.”
The OSC continued to state that cryptocurrency offerings have the potential to change the way financial services are offered to Canadians. And they are “keen to support innovation in this area.”
“Celsius, an ethereum-based lending platform, announces today its plans to disrupt the consumer credit industry by enabling quick and easy peer-to-peer loans, swapping out big banks and their exorbitant fees for colleagues, friends or other Ethereum token holders. Celsius will focus its efforts on supporting millennials, the generation that often suffers the most at the hands of credit lending services—a phenomenon we’ve seen recently with the rise of the student and consumer debt in the U.S. Celsius is building the future of consumer credit by migrating credit scores and legacy data to the blockchain and incentivizing millennials to build a new digital identity and credit score that includes their social and digital footprint. This process encourages the creation of a community of lenders and borrowers with lower loss factors and higher on-time payments, enabling greater credit limits at lower interest rates.”
6. International – P2P
“The returns are high, but know the risks.
Summary: Yield-hungry investors are funnelling more funds into the peer-to-peer lending space. Peer-to-peer loan products can appear similar to term deposits, where the investor can select loan terms and receive their principle and interest at a pre-determined date in the future. An eye-catching difference is the interest that peer-to-peer products are paying investors compared to term deposits.
Key take-out: Investors should understand the underlying investment — the guarantees and underlying assets — to better decide if risk is adequately priced in and it's worthwhile as an alternative investment.”