Portfolio update March 2020

Portfolio update P2P investments Envestio Bulkestate Reinvest24 Viventor FastInvest Swaper Robo.cash Twino Mintos Bondora Crowdestor Crowdestate Grupeer Kuetzal PeerBerry Wisefund reviews



Dear fellow investors, guys and gals, friends and family.

We’re living in a historic moment. The world has collectively decided to put the ecomony to a standstill, to potentially save hundreds of thousands of lives.

The question is how long we’ll be able to sustain the lockdown. How many companies will have to go out of business before we start to see riots on the streets?

Most crowdlending platforms have published statements on how they’ll handle the Coronavirus and lockdown period. In short:

  • Some are optimistic and opportunistic
  • Some acknowledges they have tough times ahead
  • Others decided to use the virus as an excuse to exit their scam business

I believe every downturn carries an equal opportunity for those who are ready for it. Personally, I will use the extreme conditions to look for investments on the stock market.


Monthly Income Statement: March 2020

Crowdlending Income XIRR Invested Value
Bondora* -412.91€ 3.02% 9 813€ 12 896€
Bulkestate* 0€ 11.10% 10 000€ 10 989€
Crowdestate* 2.25€ 5.90% 5 648€ 6 677€
Crowdestor* 416.30€ 15.14% 82 912€ 91 438€
FastInvest* 41.74€ 16.19% 1 911€ 2 640€
Grupeer 192.62€ 14.53% 20 474€ 24 001€
Mintos* 144.88€ 17.24% 20 000€ 25 019€
PeerBerry* 72.17€ 13.91% 6 000€ 6 427€
ReInvest24* 2.59€ 0.11% 1 000€ 999€
Robocash* 111.20€ 12.66% 10 000€ 12 447€
Swaper* 137.49€ 14.15% 10 000€ 13 575€
Viventor* 70.03€ 12.29% 5 000€ 5 401€
Wisefund 264.47€ 20.65% 18 117€ 20 626€
Scams XIRR Invested Value
Envestio -100% 20 000€ 0€
Kuetzal -100% 24 700€ 0€
Subtotal 1 042.83€ -4.00% 245 577€ 233 140€
Real Estate Income Invested Value
Property #1 704€ 46.71% 18 080€ 41 448€
Property #2 1 167€ 0.37% 61 200€ 61 373€
1 871€ 79 280€ 102 822€
Total 2 913.83€ 1.98% 324 857€ 335 962€

Note: I marked Grupeer income as orange for now because it’s highly questionable. Read more in the Grupeer section below.

Portfolio performance: Historical view

Income from Crowdlending & Real Estate combined was 2 913.83€.
(-951.01€ less than last month).

That means I’m 97.13% Financially Free (-31.70 percentage points down from last month).

My second goal of 7 000€ per month reached 41.63% (-13.59 percentage points down from last month).

The main reason for the income drop is because Crowdestor decided not to pay out any interest (or principal) from March 14th and the next 3 months.

Bondora

I stopped reinvesting in Bondora* a long time ago and I’ve started the slow withdrawal process.

153.55€ was recovered in March but I still have 25 342€ in defaulted loans.

I invested in loans through Bondora’s “Portfolio Manager”. I advise you not to make the same mistake.

If you want to use Bondora’s Go&Grow as a savings account and earn 6.75% interest rate, use this link* to get 5€ free when you sign up.

See more info and screenshot from my Bondora account

Bulkestate

I’m have invested in 2 projects on Bulkestate* and the next payout is scheduled for 21.12.2020.

Bulkestate have 1 interesting project available at the moment, which offers 17% interest rate and a low LTV (Loan To Value) of 49%.

See more info and screenshot from my Bulkestate account

Crowdestate

The problems on Crowdestate* shows clearly in my income graph.

I’m slowly withdrawing funds as they are repaid.

I have 6 late and 1 defaulted project. It’ll be interesting to see how well Crowdestate handle the defaults and delays in 2020. The Coronavirus is not going to make it any easier to recover my funds.

See more info and screenshot from my Crowdestate account

Crowdestor

Crowdestor* decided to pause all payments from borrowers and give them a 3 month grace period. Initially the message was, that the borrowers will receive a short “free ride” in order to adapt to the Covid-19 situation.

When a global crisis comes up, it’s clear that some action must be taken to serve the best interest of the investors. However, I think it’s problematic that Crowdestor, which is supposed to be an independent loan intermediary, is able to make decisions which impacts projects where they are borrowers themselves. To me, that’s a conflict of interest which should never happen.

Seeing Crowdestor making decisions which overrules current loan agreements and altering payment schedules, without asking investors first, made me lose some trust in the platform. I’m sure Crowdestor made the right decision based on the current situation, but that’s not the point. Investors should decide for themselves and always be asked before any action is taken. Am I the only one with this point of view?

Maybe Crowdestor realized this conflict of interest mistake, because on April 3rd they launched a survey, asking investors which scenario they would prefer, giving 5 different options for repayment:

Note, there’s no option to proceed with bankruptcy procedures if the borrower cannot fullfil his obligations. Would I vote for bankruptcy procedure? No, of course not. But since it’s the normal procedure to follow in case a borrower cannot pay (in normal market conditions), I think it should be an option.

Which option will I vote for?

Holding borrowers accountable to 3 months of interest 9-18 months after principal has been returned seems wrong. That eliminates option C and D. Option E raises the question whether Crowdestor is able to make an objctive decision for their own projects. That leaves me with A and B. Either no interest or 1/3 of the interest paid together with the principal. I guess I’ll pick B.

See more info and screenshot from my Crowdestor account

FastInvest

I feel twisted about FastInvest*. Some people say it’s obvious they’re a scam.

As we’ve seen recently with Grupeer, having a big office and 30-40 employees doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a legit business. If just 1 influential person makes some dishonest decisions, it doesn’t matter what the rest of the team is doing.

I’ve reduced my position by withdrawing principal and interest as it’s been paid back. I’ll probably keep a small position in FastInvest just to follow the evolvement of the platform.

See more info and screenshot from my FastInvest account

Grupeer

Unfortunately, I expect Grupeer to be listed side by side with Kuetzal and Envestio in next month’s update.

Grupeer has turned out to be the biggest disappointment of my P2P investing experience. They were one of the platforms I trusted the most and now it looks like they’ve decided to exit scam.

Technically it might not be a scam but a case of embezzlement. Either way I’ll lose my money 🙁

All interest earned on Grupeer now seems to be nothing but digits on a screen.
How do we know?

There’s evidence that projects and loan originators presented from October 2019 and onwards are fake.

First of all, loan originators like Lion Lender and Epic Cash doesn’t hold any license to lend out money. Also, their websites don’t have any traffic, so how did they find borrowers to more than 1M EUR in such a short time?

People have emailed and called partners of Grupeer and some of them have told they don’t have any business relations with Grupeer. Other partners have confirmed partnership but have not received any money from Grupeer since January.

Feel free to check the evidence collected in this Google Drive folder.

It seems like Grupeer was inspired by Kuetzal and decided to go down the same road. No words can describe how disappointed I am.

See more info and screenshot from my Grupeer account

Mintos

Mintos* now have 5 loan originators who lists loans at +25% interest rate and buyback guarantee. Remember that the buyback guarantee only works if the loan originator is alive. Many of them are expected to default during a crisis.

Selecting the best loan originators are more important now than ever. I go for A-B rated loan originators with an ExploreP2P score of 65 or more.

I bought some discounted loans from A-B+ rated loan originators in March, hoping the loan originators will survive and be able to buy the loans back. A risky strategy for sure, let’s see how it works out.

Mintos tells me I earned 616.52€ in March (because of the discounts) but I don’t see it as profit until the loans are paid back. That’s why I only report pure interest earnings of 144.88€. It’s the lowest number in a very long time and it clearly shows that borrowers are troubled to pay back in time.

See more info and screenshot from my Mintos account

PeerBerry

I use PeerBerry* for my children’s savings account.

According to a recent poll on Facebook, PeerBerry is the most trusted platform with 511 votes, even beating Mintos who collected 447 votes.

The 15.5% short-term loans from last month have dried out. Now the best rates are 13.5% for ~330+ days loan duration.

See more info and screenshot from my PeerBerry account

Reinvest24

My ReInvest24* account is approaching break even after nearly 1 year of investing. Not impressive. This is mainly because funding of the projects takes months and no interest is paid out for most projects in the funding period.

At least the investments are secured by real estate. Investors own the bricks so I don’t expect ReInvest24 to run away like we’ve seen other platforms do.

If you want to try ReInvest24 you will get 10€ instantly credited to your account if you sign up with my ReInvest24 referral link*.

See more info and screenshot from my ReInvest24 account

Robocash

Robocash* raised interest rates of all their loans from 12% to 14% on March 20th.

On April 7th at 13:00 CET, Robocash will do a Live Web Cast.

If you have any questions to Sergey Sedov, Founder and CEO Robocash Group, make sure to ask them through this form.

A link to the webcast will be sent to Robocash investors shortly before the event starts, so if you want to join, you’ll need to create an account* first.

See more info and screenshot from my Robocash account

Swaper

For the first time ever Swaper* has a ton of short-term loans available on their primary market.

On March 18th interest rates were raised from 12% to 14%. For investors with more than 5k EUR interest rates were raised from 14-16%.

Income from Swaper February 2020

I really hope Swaper (and Wandoo Finance which is the mother company) will make it through the crisis, it’s such an easy and pleasant way to invest.

See more info and screenshot from my Swaper account

Viventor

Viventor* is a marketplace for loans like eg. Mintos and PeerBerry. I’m still testing it out to see whether it’s a platform I like to keep in the long run. The platform is working smoothly – so far so good.

Viventor published another update about the troubled loan originator “Aforti” to everyone who invested in Aforti. In short, Aforti are still not paying (after almost 1 year) and Viventor proceeds with legal action to recover the money.

At the same time, Aforti posts on Facebook that they have become the winner of the diamonds ranking of the Polish economy. What a joke…

See more info and screenshot from my Viventor account

Wisefund

Of the 5 projects I invested in on Wisefund, 2 of the projects didn’t pay in March. They’re likely to have liquidity issues due to the Coronavirus but no official explanation has been given.

Wisefund decided to remove me from their affiliate program because I wrote this text in my last update:

“I decided to reduce my exposure to Wisefund until I’m 100% certain they’re legit. Since I reduced my investment from 30k to 20k EUR, interest payments are equally lower. All my withdrawal requests have been processed.”

Apparently, Wisefund doesn’t allow affiliates to express any doubts about the platform. If affiliation means pure promotion, I don’t want to be a part of it. If I feel uncertain or have doubts, I want to express my thoughts freely. 

This step just proves to me that withdrawing from Wisefund was the right decision. I’ll keep withdrawing my money and exit completely if/when the projects are paid back.

See more info and screenshot from my Wisefund account

Real Estate

I received rent from all 5 tenants on time as usual.

The tenant who complained about moist in the apartment (first property), said she’ll be moving out on April 31st. According to the contract she has 3 months notice. I always collect 1 month prepaid rent and 3 months deposit so even if she moves out earlier, I’ll not be missing any payments.

I also agreed on changing 3 windows in the second property.

See more info about my First property and Second property

Savings rate / Expenses overview

I’ll most likely change “savings rate” to “expenses” in the near future, as I don’t have any salary income anymore.

My total expenses for the month were €1 662, including 800€ in rent (the full rental amount). My partner paid 50% of our rent in Denmark but I will pay 100% in the future. We still share other household expenses. 

Compensation for “accumulated vacation days” from my previous job was paid out in March. That’s the last paycheck I’ll receive from them.

See more info about my Savings rate

Blog statistics

It’s clear to see that less people are searching for alternative investments and financial freedom during a pandemic.

Visitors: 10 043 (-28.68% compared to last month)
Page views: 31 417 (-36.21% compared to last month)

3029 Subscribers (+38 compared to last month)
1 513 Facebook followers (+32 compared to last month)

Quote of the month

“If a problem is fixable, if a situation is such that you can do something about it, then there is no need to worry. If it’s not fixable, then there is no help in worrying. There is no benefit in worrying whatsoever.”
― The Dalai Lama

Start your own blog

What better time to start blogging than during a lockdown? During the Covid-19 pandemic, SiteGround* offers 3 months StartUp hosting for 0.99€.

First renewal will be on promotional terms for 1 year (50% discount) keeping the overall cost very affordable.

SiteGround - Cheap Web Hosting for WordPress

Free EUR bank account with no fees

N26 is a German bank based in Berlin and your account is secured up to 100 000€ like any traditional bank.

If you live in Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Sweden orthe United Kingdom, having a EUR bank account will save you from currency exchange fees.

I use N26* to transfer to and from my investments. Even living in Portugal, it’s my main choice of bank.

N26 bank account

That’s it for this month!

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P.S. When you comment, please use your real name (first name is enough). Blog names are not accepted and will be renamed to Anonymous.

40 Replies to “Portfolio update March 2020”

  1. Hi Jorgen,

    What do you think about the Equity Campaign project offered by Crowdestor?

    Cheers

    1. I’ll wait for the presentation and whitepaper to be published on Friday to form an opinion. Let’s bring it up again next weekend.

  2. Hi Jorgen,

    I started withdrawing from FastInvest also.. main reason – the website is not working properly. Next payment date – rarely updates, the interest received chart failed to calculate monthly interest received..
    Contacted support – got feedback that they will look at it. It was two months ago…
    In short – i share the same feeling as you – looks too suspicious, may be a scam…

    1. Hi Giedrius,
      There’s many red flags about FastInvest, website bugs is the least of my concerns. Most platforms have small bugs. Even Mintos shows a “Closing balance” of -54.07€ for me in the Account Statement today. It’s not possible to have a negative balance, so I’m not sure what’s going on.

  3. «Personally, I will use the extreme conditions to look for investments on the stock market.»

    Would you like to share some thoughts on that? 🙂
    What kind of investment? ETFs, stocks? What platform do you use?

    I have also decided to invest in stocks more directly to take advantage of the low prices and to have more liquidity if I want to invest in real estate. In the past, I have invested in funds. But I have been buying indices now for the stated reasons. I am relatively new, and I have been buying BCP Certificates (DAX and FTSE). Each operation costs me 8,50€. Would love to hear the experience of others.

    PS: Welcome to Portugal!

    1. Of course Ricardo.

      I use DeGiro, which is one of the lowest cost brokers in Europe. The have a long list of ETF’s you can buy without paying any fees.
      I’m planning to invest mostly in Vanguard S&P500 ETF (VUSA). And maybe add a few individual dividend stocks that I like..

      1. Thank you very much for the reply! I have been following your blog for awhile (I started following when I was living in Denmark, funny enough).

        I will share my recent experience with the stock market in case you are interested to also hear from someone else… I have invested in funds in the past, but never directly in the stock market. I bought index certificates, not ETFs, because my bank makes it harder to buy ETFs.

        DAX30 (German) was really low so…
        6-march bought 808,29 which are now worth 720,23 (-11%).
        20-march bought 1.079,40 which are now worth 1.234,68 (+14%).

        Now that it is rising, I have been buying FTSE100 (English)…
        1-april bought 2.552,08 which are now worth 2.635,80 (+3%).
        8-april (today) bought 2.463,90.

        My girlfriend and I have been saving hard for a few years now. We don’t have much to invest now because we recently bought a house.

    2. Hi/Olá Ricardo,
      I am also focusing on ETFs and Stocks.
      I am using DEGIRO which seems to be less expensive than you are using.
      Stay safe and best of luck on your investments.

        1. I want to support Jorgen’s comment on Degiro having cheaper fees. Degiro literally does not charge fees on the first operation on some ETFs each year.

          As a personal opinion on stocks, when analysing check on how often they buyback stock and how often they issue new stocks. Because the reason a lot of US companies stock value keep growing is because they purchase back the stocks they have on the market when there is no better investment and the have much FCF.

  4. Hi Jørgen, thanks for this blog.

    Have you seen the last post on Grupeer Blog? Do you think we can’t recover our money? (I also invested in Grupeer), not even what was on the platform but not invested?. What can we do about this? I’m very concerned.

    Best regards

    1. Hi Pedro,
      Yes, I have seen the blog posts from Grupeer. It doesn’t really matter what they say, unless they start explaining why some of their loan originators denies to work with them. They’re not adressing the problems, rather they try to blame the virus and investor behavior. It’s clealy just an excuse, similar to one of the last blog posts Envestio wrote.

  5. Do you really believe that Grupper and Wisefund will pay you back? I don.t
    Do you also believe less people are searching for financial freedom or is it just less people trusting you and the P2P scene as a whole?

    1. I doubt that Grupeer will pay back. But some of their loan originators are real, which means that some recovery is likely (with or without the help of Grupeer).
      I don’t know about Wisefund. I hope they’re legit. I have received all withdrawals so far, the question is what happens when the next loan reaches maturity.

      It’s easy to monitor where web traffic is coming from and what they’re searching for. It’s not something I believe, it shows clearly in the statistics.
      After so many problems with P2P platforms people have lost a lot of trust in the crowdlending scene, including myself.

  6. Hi Jorgen,
    as Grupeer is a Latvian company as Envestio&Kuetzal were.. do you have any toughs/news on investigation of these two and do you see any “cent” at the end of the tunnel for any of these three?

    1. Hi Jakub,
      I know the police is investigating all cases. The police rarely shares anything until the criminals have received a sentence from a judge.

  7. Hi Jorgen,

    Would you start thinking about switching to dividend paying stocks ? Cause as I see it(hoping i’m wrong for you), probably 50% of your remaining crowdlending sites could be a scam or will close.

    1. Hi Jorge,
      I started to invest in crowdlending because I thought the stock market was too high. Now that we see the stock market drop I’ve been waiting for, I will add some ETF’s to my portfolio.

  8. Crowdestor doesn’t offer the bankruptcy option, simply because it is not an option at the moment. Latvia and Estonia have halted all bankruptcy procedures for the foreseeable future. So even if Crowdestor wanted to, they can’t start a bankruptcy procedure for any of their lenders at the moment.

  9. Hi Jørgen. Hope you are enjoying the weather in Portugal these days. I have spent a year of my studies there in Aveiro and it was one of my happiest periods in life. Surfing is just great there. Good luck to you and your family with the transition :).

    I have a more particular question tho. Which tool do you use to track your portfolio’s performance? I find it very tedious and boring to go through all the platforms on the 1st of the month and copy pasting numbers for 30 minutes and having visibility only once a month.

    1. Hi Vedran,
      I answered your question in my “Moving to Portugal post” yesterday. I simply use Excel for tracking my investments. Good old manual work.. I have not found any better solution, as only a few platforms offer API.

      1. Hi, sorry for missing that. I have not received any notification and could not see the comment after i posted it

  10. Hi Jörgen, first of all thanks for this blog. Been reading it for over a year now and enjoying your great content. 🙂

    But… You said that with the fall of E & K, you lost all your income from crowdlending and a bit more. And now it seems almost certain that you’re going to lose at least over 20,000€ more with Grupeer. No-one can say that you didn’t do your share of due diligence, having even visited multiple companies, seeing these people and the projects with your own eyes etc. Still, clearly you have to admit by now that you still can’t detect the scams from the legit businesses, especially when it seems that some platforms indeed have been legit for some time but are able to exit scam way too quickly for even an active investor like you to notice early enough.

    Please understand that I am definitely not blaming you for anything, or judging you! I write this as a person who has also now lost way more than I ever earned from this whole p2p-world.

    So I would really much like to know, what are you going to do now in the future? What more can you do anymore to find out whether to trust or not trust any platform in the future, especially since you say Grupeer was among your favorites? What if the next one to fall down is f.ex. Crowdestor, or Mintos? How can you know that’s not possible?

    I myself can’t think of anything else to do anymore than just call it a day and exit every single platform. You however seem to be quite optimistic still, at least from what I can figure out from your content, so I would like to know more about the thought processes and your plans for the future, since that’s basically the hard content of investing.

    Keep up the good work with the blog, even in these hard times! 🙂

    1. Hi Thomas,

      First of all, thank you for being a long time follower.

      I agree, that it’s been impossible for me to detect whether a platform turns out to be scam or not. The frauds we’ve seen included real businesses and real projects too. As you point out, even if a platform is legit and honest when I visit them, it doesn’t take much for a business to change and exit scam at any given moment.

      I cannot know if Crowdestor or Mintos will fall. Future EU regulation and audited financial statements will help raise trust, but even then, embezzlement can happen in any company.

      As investors, we accept the risk of investing in loans. However, it should not be possible for a platform to disappear overnight. I really hope regulation and technology will find a way to prevent that from happening in the future. The risk of investing in crowdlending should be based on math, numbers and statistics, not only a matter of trust.

      I wouldn’t say I’m optimistic but I’m not ready to call it a day for all platforms. I’ll continue to withdraw from Bondora, Crowdestate, Wisefund and FastInvest and reduce my exposure on Crowdestor. I’ll keep reinvesting in all other platforms but not deposit more. Any new investments will go into the stock market. I’ve been waiting several years for a stock market drop and it seems like a good opportunity to get involved now.

  11. Thanks for the update. I’m wondering where is this poll (created by John Silver) in Facebook, is it public?

  12. Hej Jørgen

    Thank you for at great blog. What is your goal for the next investment is it more properties ? seems like you found some good once with a nice ROI.

  13. Hi Jørgen, thanks for the interesting article. I was wondering what kind of tools you use to keep overview of all your assets, generate reports/graphs/charts etc? I own stocks/bonds/real estate and still have not found a good way of keeping track of all the revenue and expenses.

    1. Hi Giorgi,
      I use Excel and HighCharts. Probably not the most effective way to keep track but it’s simple and works for me.

  14. Hi Jørgen, I’ve been following your blog for a while and invested in Grupeer as well because they really seemed like a legit business for so long. What do you think, the whole Grupeer could be a big scam – with all the development projects etc. – or just those loan originators that states they don’t maintain a business relationship with them? I personally still having a little hope that not everything is a scam otherwise they could already just shut down the whole website just like Envestio did from one day to another.

    1. Hi Ben,
      As far as I can see, Grupeer’s projects were legit until a certain point. There’s real projects and real loan originators on the platform so it’s not all scam. They could still close down the platform though, I’m not sure what’s going to happen. I hope for the best but expect the worst.

  15. Hi Jørgen, I just came across your blog today. I find your interests and ways to achieve financial freedom quite interesting. As I can see from your crowdlending, you are focusing mainly on Real Estate and Loans crowdlending. Is it because you do not trust other crowlendings or because the lower interest rates given on those are not attractive enough to you?

    For example like this one:
    – Fondea: They focus on second hand cars giving 8%

    I wanted to ask you about your opinion on these.

    1. Hi Daniel,
      There’s hundreds of investment sites, there’s no way I can invest in all of them. I’ve not heard about Fondea before but I just checked them out. They don’t have an english version of their website, that’s enough for me to pass. It looks like you give a loan to Fondea which buys a car and you’ll get 8% p.a. when the car is sold. If they don’t sell it you only get your principal back. What happens if they can’t sell any cars for 6 months, like in a global crisis situation? They will surely not have enough funds to honor the “buyback”.

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