PeerBerry is among the few P2P platforms in my radar that kept a seamless performance during the COVID-19 crisis period. What are the reasons for that? What can we learn about P2P platforms that can help us take more informed decisions in the choices of platforms to invest in? A PeerBerry update.
Financial Statements Transparency
A key problem of the P2P lending industry is the lack of transparency mainly at two particular aspects: P2P platform business structure & financials and loan originators identity, shareholding structure, financial record and performance. PeerBerry was among the very few P2P platforms that kept a continuous flow of information to investors, and this impacted their trust in the platform.
In the beginning of June, PeerBerry deliver on the promise to publish loan originator financial statements for 2019 on the PeerBerry website. The platform expects to publish all audited financial statements until the end of the month and make clear to investors which financial statements are unaudited.
This simple action establishes a significant gap between PeerBerry and other P2P platform competitors, and has reflection on the PeerBerry performance during the crisis. Even with a significant drop in the amount of loans funded, PeerBerry kept the investors trust.
Stable Presence of Crucial Partners
Even being different companies, with separate stakeholders, PeerBeery is strictly linked with Aventus Group. Over the last few months, the Aventus Group CEO participated in multiple initiatives towards answering investors questions about the partnership between Aventus Group as loan originator and PeerBerry, as well as about the group guarantees that support the platform stability.
Additional loan originators updates have been shared with investors over time, emphasizing their financial capability to overcome the COVID-19 challenging period and answering in a preventive manner investor questions and doubts.
Continuous Reliable Communication
Another relevant PeerBerry activity with direct impact into investors trust is the work done by the Marketing and Customer Support team. They answer not only to emails and formal communications in the PeerBerry channels, but also actively participate in external investor channels, such as Facebook groups and Telegram channels not only presenting a public face for the platform, but also engaging in open discussion about platform development, loan originator offers and issues identified by investors. This represents a significant burden for the PeerBerry team “great work Rita Simanavičiūtė, Head of Marketing and Communications”, but is also crucial for all the rapport created with the investor community.
Sheer Operational Capacity
In the end of the day what investors want to know is: can I withdraw my available funds from PeerBerry? During this particular period, when so many P2P platforms faced challenges providing investors with their available funds, PeerBerry kept the expected capacity to do what was supposed to do. And such simple operational capacity clearly impact investors opinion about PeerBerry and their capacity to perform.
The biggest question from investors is: how Peerberry manage to have 0% delays in these hard times. Which really is a justified question. Too good to be true?
Rita Simanavičiūtė, Head of Marketing and Communications provided the following answer on the Telegram PeerBerry group:
“A small share of overdue/late loans can only be achieved through tight lending conditions. Early March, when the crisis began, our partners tightened conditions even further. This resulted in lower volumes of new lending because every client is very responsibly assessed. Our partners do not want to take too much risk. Together with our partners, we do not want to put you at risk. Therefore, you are offered to invest only in loans issued under the strictest conditions. This is the reason why we saw about 10% of overdue loans already in April. Currently, also there are about 10-15% overdue loans.
It is also important to mention that our loan originators never borrow more than up to 45% of their loan portfolio through p2p. The rest of the loans they issue using their own funds. We have an agreement with our partners that PeerBerry is provided with the most secure loans. As a result, there are fewer loans on our platform at the moment and their interest rates are lower compared to the market. However, you can be absolutely calm because your investments are safe on PeerBerry.”Rita Simanavičiūtė, Head of Marketing and Communications
It is a crazy world when a P2P platform that does what is supposed to do makes such a differentiation factor when comparing with other platforms in the market.
PeerBerry showed how a small but capable team is able to maintain a communication strategy in place to keep investors trust. But that only works if marketing is supported with actual financial information transparency, the continuous presence of the key partners that provide performance capacity to the platform (Aventus Group) and reliable and personal engagement with investors both in the platform support channels as well as informal investor groups. But in the end, what really matters to investors is performance! Can I, as investor, withdraw my available funds at any time? During this period PeerBerry showed such capability.
Other platforms can learn from this example. And remember that this success requires a long term commitment and keeping promises and conditions during the entire relationship. But as always it is critical for investors to remember…
“Past performance is no guarantee of future results!”
What is your opinion on the subject?
Share in the comments section your view on this topic. What were the reasons to keep investing or leave PeerBerry during the COVID-19 period? How do you plan to proceed in the near future? What can PeerBerry do to increase your trust? It will be very interesting to learn what the future will bring for PeerBerry.
PeerBerry’s Loyalty program:
Silver: From €10 000 investment portfolio (earn +0,5% for future investments)
Gold: From €25 000 investment portfolio (earn +0,75% for future investments)
Platinum: From €40 000 investment portfolio (earn +1% for future investments)