We are now celebrating exceeding £59million in funds raised for businesses featured on the platform and borrowers have repaid over £28million collectively in capital and interest payments.
“This is a great achievement and demonstrates the interest from investors in peer to peer lending and particularly the Innovative Finance ISA account, enabling investors to lend to British businesses and earn potential interest tax free.” States CEO, Karteek Patel.
Supporting British business
At Crowdstacker, we are an ISA eligible investment platform that seeks to provide funding for British businesses to help them grow and expand.
A multitude of British businesses have benefited from funds raised through the Crowdstacker platform through our lending business borrowers. Borrowers who have raised funds on our platform in order to lend to smaller businesses include Clearwell Capital which lends to small and medium sized property developers and Rivers Leasing, an NACFB member who was named by the Financial Times as one of 1000 Europe’s Fastest Growing Companies in 2019. Rivers lends to small businesses and its own past lending has ranged from a beauty salon to a regional football club.
Prime is another example of a Crowdstacker borrower which supports British farming by lending to small agricultural businesses.
“Being able to include an agricultural lending product such as Prime on the Crowdstacker platform creates some interesting diversity for our investors’ portfolios,” explains CEO, Karteek Patel.
Prime typically lends to farmers, small holders and horticulture businesses to assist in the deployment of projects which help them become more environmentally friendly or technologically up-to-date. Typical projects funded by Prime include building and kitting out Anaerobic Digestion (AD) plants on farms.
An innovative approach spanning 4 years
Some platforms are increasingly becoming reliant on institutional investment, however, we are proud that 100 per cent of the peer to peer lending funds raised for British businesses through Crowdstacker has come directly from ‘the crowd’. There is no institutional money involved, just simple ‘crowdfunding’ in its most pure form.
We pride ourselves on creating extensive materials for investors to understand each investment in the form of investment brochures which explain the potential risks and benefits that may be involved and we feel that we occupy a more unique position in this respect.
New FCA rules
Recently the FCA implemented new rules for the P2P industry. A key aspect of the FCA changes was the introduction of a mandatory risk questionnaire, in order that investors fully understand the risk of investing. As well as the categorisation of the type of investor pre-investment.
Crowdstacker implemented its risk questionnaire from day one when the platform launched four years ago in 2015.
Fundamentally we felt that this was a crucial feature for the Crowdstacker platform, and we would not have wanted to launch without it. Investing in any asset class requires investors to be fully aware of the risk involved and it is important for us to ensure investors have certified this through an interactive assessment.
Furthermore, we implemented investor categorisation (where investors self-certify which type of investor they are – either experienced or an ordinary investor who confirms they will not invest more than 10% of their net worth) when we launched bonds and loan notes in 2017.
Investor categorisation was also applied to P2P loans recently, however many of our investors had already undertaken the investor categorisation process since 2017 when investing in Bonds or Loan Notes.
Further changes included enhanced risk management. Given our key USP is to list a handful of loans, we have always carried out extensive due diligence which is outlined in more detail in the information brochures.
Karteek explains: “We continue to ensure that our business is well managed and governed, promoting good customer outcomes and given that we were aligned to the new rules already we did not have any significant changes for investors.
“We are pleased that the rest of the industry will now implement these features and feel it is a positive step for P2P.”
Alternative finance innovation recognition
As well as reaching these great milestones, Crowdstacker has also recently been recognised in November 2019 for its work to support alternative finance with the Nextfin award for ‘innovation for funding alternative lenders’.
Your capital is at risk if you lend to businesses. Lending through Crowdstacker is not covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. Tax treatment is dependent on an individual’s circumstances and may be subject to change in the future.