Mintos was established in 2015. Company operations based in Riga, Latvia with a team of 81 people look after the platform. Mintos is the largest P2P platform in the industry and provides a variety of loan types, with returns averaging 12%.
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Why do we like what we like?
1) Investment Opportunities
Mintos is one of the largest P2P Lending sites available with over €3BLN in loans funded. There are around 600,000 loans listed in the primary market at any one time on Mintos, almost 60 different lenders and around 30 different countries where loans are made. This provides substantial opportunities to investors to diversify their risk.
2) Buyback Guarantee
The majority of lenders listed on Mintos offer a Buyback Guarantee, reducing the risk for investors to lose their investment.
What does this mean in practice? A buyback guarantee is a guarantee issued by the loan originator to the investor for a loan, that confirms the loan originator will repurchase the loan from the investor if that loan is delayed by more than 60 days.
3) Secondary Market
If a loan is not performing as expected, or if an investor simply wants their money back, Mintos provides investors with the opportunity to sell the loan to another investor. Not all P2P platforms provide this!
4) FX Opportunities
Not all lenders are based in euro! In fact, lenders take loans in 12 other currencies including USD, GBP and RUB. To exchange currency without any fees and an attractive FX rate, I suggest using a platform like Currencyfair or Transfermate rather than Mintos itself, where the rate of exchange and fees are much lower compared to Mintos or a normal bank.
Use this link to sign up with Currencyfair and receive 30 euro once transactions over 1000 euro are made! For full disclosure – We will receive a bonus too. Thanks for your support!
Why don’t we like what we don’t like
1) Reliability of Lenders Listed on site
Having reviewed all lenders listed on Mintos, we noticed some inconsistencies on the data available:
- Only 57% provide audited financial statements. Can we rely on the data provided by unaudited statements? It should be noted however that this has improved from 37% of lenders providing audited financial statements previously. Clearly Mintos are listening to investors and improving where they can.
- 34% of lenders are not yet profitable, improving from 45%. While it is normal for a new business to be unprofitable for several years, loss making companies increases risk of failure (and ultimately risk of losing investors’ money)
- 81% of companies have been founded in the last 10 years and have yet to experience a recession. Company failures increase exponentially when credit is tight.
2) Consistency of financial data available
A common complaint about Mintos is the lack of transparency for loan originators. There is no consistency in accounting standards used, which lets lenders hide the financial data that they don’t want investors to see. We would like to see some consistency here – Have lenders report under IFRS and only accept lenders that have been audited. Otherwise, what stops lenders hiding or manipulating the data they present?
Our own Mintos ratings
LAST UPDATED: October 2019
|Company Name||Mintos Ratings||Total out of 100||Audited||Profitable||Group Guarantee||Do they pay interest on delayed payments?||Based on Financial Data|
Czech s.r.o.: Yes|
Creamfinance Denmark ApS: Yes
Crediton LLC: Yes
SIA Creamfinance Latvia: No
Creamfnance Sp. z o.o: Yes
Spain, S.L.: No|
MFO OnlineKazFinance LLP (Kazakhstan): Yes
IDF CAPITAL, S.A.P.I DE C.V., SOFOM E.N.R.: No
|BB Finance Group||A-||72||Yes||No||Yes||Yes||31/12/2018|
Finance OU: Yes|
AS Capital: No
Capitalia Finance UAB: Yes
UAB Hipotekiniai kreditai: No
Polska S.A – No|
AASA Kredit Svenska AB – Yes
How did we do this? We mined the data available, studied the financial statements, and basically looked at all the boring stuff! We rated each lender across a number of criteria, with a higher weighting given to what we considered to be more important:
Do you agree or disagree with our ratings or weightings? Let us know why in the comments!
We have recently updated out rating criteria to include “discretionary” points, allowing us to take a maximum of 20 points off the total scores of lenders. As not everything is captured by the data provided in the Financial Statements, this metric allows us to downgrade lenders for various reasons. In the table above, several lenders have been downgraded for the late release of Financial Statements (there is no reason why we should not have access to 2018 data by now!) and in the case of Aforti, the lender has been downgraded due to recent funding/IT difficulties experienced by the company.
Other factors that may result in a downgrade include recent poor loan performance, negative announcements about the companies or anything really! The idea is to use this metric as a means to downgrade lenders before they release negative Financial Statements, in order to get ahead of the rush to sell.
5 of the Best – The Safest Lenders on Mintos
Although investing always comes with a certain level of risk, having performed our own research we have listed the safest lenders on the site at the minute, and this is where the majority of our capital is invested. Beyond the quantitative measures, we like to focus on qualitative areas such as management team , strategy and processes, details of which we have outlined below.
Why do we care about the loan originators? The loan originators guarantee the loan, not Mintos! If a loan originator goes out of business, your capital is at risk. We believe these companies are stable and have the lowest risk of going out of business
|Company Name||Mintos Ratings||Our total out of 100||Skin in the Game||Founded||Average Return on Investment||Employees||Country||Audited||Financial Y/E||Net Profit in Euro||Net Profit Margin %||Current Ratio||Debt to Asset Ratio|
A UK bases company, 1PM is one of the strongest and most reliable lenders listed on Mintos. The company has had a number or recent acquisitions (7 in total including 4 in 2017), and targeting more M&A activity with a buy and build strategy. 1PM focus on lending to SME’s including asset finance, loan finance and invoice finance. It boast an impressive track record of 75% recovery of bad debts with its current credit recovery process.
CEO: Iain Smith joined as CEO in February 2014 and has 32 years of experience, with a variety of CFO and CEO experience. He attended university in the University of York, where he received a BA in Economics and Politics.
CFO: James Roberts joined as CFO in May 2017 and has 18 years experience. He is a qualified Chartered Accountant and his background is in the accounting and finance industry, holding a number of financial positions across various companies.
Based in Riga Latvia, Expresscredit is the parent company of Banknote and Vizia, both of which make our top 5. Banknote provides services including consumer loans, pawn loans, and money transfers, and Vizia focuses on consumer loans. Expresscredit was established in 2009 as a pawn shop, growing ever since and joining Mintos in 2016. Expresscredit holds 5.8% of the market share in Latvia, targeting growth in the consumer loan and pawn loan segments.
Agris Evertovskis (Chairman and Co – Founder) was born in 1984. He graduated from the Stockholm School of Economics is Riga in 2006, worked in the Commercial real estate sector and founded Expresscredit in 2009, where he has remained ever since.
Didzis Admidins is the CEO of the company and a member of the board. He was born in 1984 and holds a masters in Economics.
Polish based company that focuses on personal loans with a lending term up to 2 years. Targeting expansion in new business lines including real estate and car dealerships and plans to expand online and outside of Poland, beginning with Spain. Currently boasts an impressive 3.95% financial loss ratio on loans issued.
Tomasz Bracki (President of the Management Board): Lawyer with 3 years’ experience in Financial Services and another 10 in marketing industry. Joined in August 2018.
Jerzy Mazurek (Vice President of the Management Board): Lawyer and legal background. Previously president of a polish debt collection company, which helps to explain the impressive debt recovery record. Joined in February 2018.
Mogo is registered in Luxembourg and focuses on vehicle finance leases and sales and leaseback up to 15k euro, with vehicles secured as collateral against the loan. The company currently operates in 14 countries globally, focusing on the eastern European market. Mogo also provide consumer loans up to 3k euro in Latvia, Estonia and Armenia, where the majority of the loan portfolio is currently based (53% of total loans).
Modestas Sudnius (CEO): Internally promoted to CEO having worked with the company for over 5 years, starting as the country manager for Lithuania. Previous professional experience includes over 10 years working with international organisations. Graduate of Management program in ISM and holds a masters degree issued by the Stockholm School of Economics.
Maris Kreics (CFO): Joined Mogo in 2015 having come from a financial background, working with PwC for 7 years and in Corporate Finance for 2 years. Maris has obtained the notoriously difficult CFA Charterholder and is a qualified accountant having obtained his ACCA accredited.
Predicting the next Eurocent – 3 Lenders you should avoid
Who is Eurocent? Eurocent was a loan originator that joined Mintos in March 2017, providing loans from the Polish market. Within 3 months of listing, Mintos suspended Eurocent loans and in 2018 Eurcoent ceased operations and declared itself bankrupt. Investors that had loans with Eurocent are facing loses, even those with a “buyback guarantee” since the loan originator was providing that guarantee. Click here to see the latest on Eurocent.
Eurocent is a perfect example of the risk investors face when investing on P2P platforms. Loan Originators can and will continue to go out of business, leaving investors with a stack of loans that will not be fully repaid. We have risk rated each lender on Mintos in the table above and suggest avoiding those that have scored below 50.
Listed below is the worst offenders on Mintos – i.e. Lenders we believe are most likely to fall the way of Eurocent:
|Company Name||Mintos Ratings||Our total out of 100||Skin in the Game||Founded||Return on Investment||Employees||Country||Audited||Financial Y/E||Net Loss in Euro||Net Profit Margin||Current Ratio||Debt to Asset Ratio||Our total out of 100|
|Tengo||B-||23||10||2017||13.90%||296||Kazakhstan||No||30/09/2018||-309,771||-7%||Not Given||Not Given||23|
|Getbucks||B||22||5||2011||11.40%||800||Botswana, Kenya, Zambia, South Africa||No||31/12/2018||-9,949,578||-13%||0.86||0.92||22|
A loss making Kazachstan based company founded in 2017 does not inspire confidence for us as investors. Couple with this, a managing director with just 5 years professional experience leading the company, we suggest avoiding loans provided by this company.
Another loss making company founded in 2017, Bino has not released any financial information since 2017. The founder and CEO graduated from university in 2012 and although he has 10 years’ experience in the Fintech space, it is as yet unproven if he can turn this company into a long lasting venture. The risk here is simply not worth it for us, given that there are less risky investments available.
Trading primarily out of Africa and racking dismal loses of over 8,000,000 euro, the Frankfurt Stock Exchange listed company is trading near all time lows on the stock market. The company seems to be more focused on growth rather than consolidating current markets and turning them profitable, a high risk strategy that we as investors do not want to be part of. Looking at the Financial Statements, it appears that the company is staying afloat by taking on a significant amount of debt (Financial borrowings of over 83M euro, debt to asset ratio of 0.92), and when Getbucks fails to meet some of the covenants attached to these borrowings, it could spell the end for the company.
OUR MINTOS RATING: 9/10
We believe that Mintos is one of the best platforms available at the minute. For both beginners and seasoned investors, Mintos provides an opportunity to make a very attractive rate of return with an easy to use platform. The fact that we are able to perform reviews such as these speaks volumes to the site – It really is miles ahead of competitors at the minute in terms of transparency and investment opportunities, We suggest investing capital in stable companies with a high rating, above 50 at a minimum – see table above.
We would like to see Mintos continue to set the standard in the P2P industry in terms of the lenders accepted onto the platform, and transparency of financial data.
Wondering what investment strategy to use for Mintos? Or what risks you should be focusing on? Why not check out our investment guide here!
Our friend over at The Smart Investor also created a handy tool that helps to filter through Mintos Loan Originators to help find the one that is right for you – Why not check it out here!
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