News Briefing - Crowdfunding, SME And Alternative Finance

crowd in nightclub, seen from a DJ point of view

1. UK - Equity

Seedrs unveiled its latest Portfolio Update this morning.  The autumn 2018 edition describes the characteristics and performance of the 577 deals funded on the platform up to the end of 2017. Seedrs reports platform-wide IRR of 12.02 per cent and top-quartile investor IRR of 31.34 per cent |

According to BDaily News, the data "continues to show that Seedrs investments - on a fair value basis - have seen ‘outstanding’ performance on average when compared with other asset classes."

rivate Equity Wire describes the breakdown of seedrs funded companies and returns on a sector-by sector basis: "A hypothetical portfolio that includes all 577 of deals produces a platform-wide IRR of 12.02 per cent (26.42 per cent when EIS and SEIS tax reliefs are taken into account).

Coverage of Seedrs Portfolio Update on Private Equity Wire 

Coverage of Seedrs Portfolio Update on BDaily News 

2. UK - EIS / SEIS

The Pars Herald publishes an unusual take on the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS.) This piece focuses on what can go wrong (and how to avoid it.) 

The tax reliefs available on investments in startups are part of an investor's assessment of risk and reward, and it's good to see investors reminded to do their due diligence on the 'tax wrapper' around an investment, as well as the underlying business.

Insightful tips for SEIS investors from the Pars Herald.

3. UK - P2P Lending

Michael Hoare, the head of credit at RateSetter was interviewed in The Sunday Times yesterday, an responded toa question about a future financial crisis with surprising cheerfulness.

“We’ve been on the lookout for eight years,” he said. “It could happen any time.” 

It's good to know they are prepared. The company has arranged more than £2.7bn of loans since it was founded in 2010, (the Times goes on to explain) but has yet to face customers defaulting on repayments in large numbers. 

Michae lHoare of Ratesetter, interviewed in The Sunday Times. (This site may require registration.) 

4. UK - P2P Lending

GLI Finance has cut its losses, recording a net operating profit of £1.1m in the first half of the year, compared with a loss of £0.5m in the corresponding period one year ago.Commentators credit the revival to GLI's Sancus BMS alternative lending division. 

Read the news about GLI Finance in Stock Market Wire

Peer2Peer Finance News alsocoves this story.

5. UK - Fintech

Elite Business magazine looks at the future of banking,which it expects to be very different in ten years time. 

The article discusses seven distinct trends - some of them technological,some of themto dowith business models. The sections that got us most interested were augmented reality and virtuality, machine learning and predictive analytics.

Read the original article in Elite Business.

6. US - Fintech

A group experts and industry leaders in the cryptotocurrency and blockchain field has written to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) asking that the federal regulations be improved, but also be tailored to support the new asset class.

The five authors of this most recent letter, share their opinion on “critical considerations for handling cryptocurrency regulation that were not addressed in other comment letters.” The authors include: Christopher Allen, Bryan Bishop, Angus Champion de Crespigny, Gavin Fearey and Caitlin Long.

The group states:

“The unique strengths of digital assets arise from the fact that they are individually controlled bearer instruments that are designed to settle gross and in near-real time within their own settlement environments (namely, on their blockchain base layers). In many cases they offer improved transparency and stronger resilience relative to traditional securities.”

The signatories are not keen on the SEC applying regulations to digital assets in ways which do not reflect their distinctive characteristics as an asset class.

“We should leverage the technology of this asset class to protect investors in ways not previously possible. While the technology behind digital assets was created to enable individuals to control their own assets and for parties to trust the movement of those assets without confirming the identity of the counterparty, there are many additional features of the technology that leverage cryptography to achieve unique capabilities.”

Crowdfund Insider has more details about this story.

an alternative take on this story, with additional information, on CoinGape.com 

7. International - Equity

Five startups are raising equity through the Republic of Ireland's first equity crowdfunding platform, Spark Crowdfunding. The platform was set up this year to allow non-professional investorsto have access to early-stage startups with potential, and the minimum stake is as low as 25.

Firms seeking investment include a security company, a dry-cleaning company, and a campsite review app, and the target aggregate raise is in excess of €1.4m.

More details about this story on MSN.

8. International - Fintech

Riga, Ltvia hosted a cryptocurrency conference this weekend: The Baltic Honey Badger Bitcoin Conference  Crowdfund Insider praised the quality of the closing panel, which featured several 'heavyweights' from the industry, and debated what can be done to encourage merchant adoption, among other topics.

Giacomo Zucco, told the conference Bitcoin is now functioning mainly as store of value by permitting people to save in conditions where government-issued money gradually devalues.

Several video interviews are available on the World Crypto Network YouTube channel.

Read the coverage on Crowdfund Insider 

The conferenceis also covered on Bits Online.