25th Apr, 2016

rebuildingsociety.com partners with aggregator OFF3R

New partnership with crowdfunding app announced.

rebuildingsociety.com are delighted to announce a brand new partnership with crowdfunding aggregator OFF3R. All our new lending opportunities will now be available on OFF3R, which is a free-to-use crowdfunding aggregator providing its users with the latest opportunities from over 25 of the leading platforms in the UK and Europe.

The OFF3R partnership is the latest to make use of the leading rebuildingsociety.com API, as we endeavour to integrate more closely with those who aggregate the industry and widen access to crowdfunding and peer-to-peer lending as it grows.

The mobile app is available on both iOS and Android, and allows users to tailor specific notifications and settings according to their lending tendencies and the areas of crowdfunding that interest them most. The app can be downloaded from www.OFF3R.com.


20th Apr, 2016

A new net return formula that works harder for you

We’ve established a new, simple formula to calculate your annualised net returns. This new formula will provide a more accurate understanding of your returns while better accounting for elements of the loan repayment process that we can’t perfectly predict.

To calculate the annualised net return, we consider the return generated from the capital employed for each period. A period is defined as the number of days that pass in which the capital employed remains constant. The calculation of capital employed is taken from the sum of deposits less withdrawals. (i.e. funds added minus funds withdrawn) on a cumulative basis.

How will it work?

We aggregate NetGains as follows:

We then annualise the rate of return for each period in the series:

The more frequently you withdraw credit from the platform, the more periods you will have in your series. This addition to the formula improves the accuracy of how we track the capital employed. We also take a weighted average of the annualised rate of returns against the number of days so that longer periods of consistency weigh heavier in the formula than single days of unusually high losses or gains.

Why the change?

This new method has several advantages over the previous formula:

  • It is based on historic data
  • Defaults are discounted according to their probable loss
  • Idle (unemployed) capital on the platform contributes to a lower yield
  • The benefit of compounded returns is included

Until recently we had been using a simple formula to calculate an indicative net return shown on the lender dashboard. But, the new calculation is more accurate and therefore will be more useful to you!

For example, the new method better accounts for all your money invested by accounting for employed capital and not just live investments. And, the old method failed to account for the probable recovery of defaulted loans, which created a less positive summary than was realistic.

Many lenders have had an improved site experience since we began sharing the “Probable Recovery” analysis. However, we also hear your questions about why the ability to recover debt isn’t closer to 100 percent, for example when a loan has a second charge. While it is true that stronger security does improve the likelihood of recoverability, we rely on the expertise of our legal recoveries team to make informed adjustments to the probability. We would rather state a prudent recovery probability and adjust upwards as recovery is successful throughout the process.

Defaults become a bad debt only after bankruptcy proceedings or at the discretion of the recovery team. Bad debts represent a loss, but other types of defaults do not necessarily mean a loss.

What’s next for me?

It’s difficult to give a perfect net return calculation, but this updated method gives you a more accurate net return of capital employed with the platform.

In the future, as a further improvement to the lender dashboard, we plan to add 3 tabs that will allow you to filter your dashboard stats to see “All Time Stats” (as current), “Rolling 12 Months” and “Current Tax Year.” We will keep you posted about when this feature will be available!

On request, we can give you your aggregated return data for each period, for you to perform you own analysis, please allow us 2-3 weeks from request to prepare this for you.

Please direct any questions or suggestions to the customer support team at: support@rebuildingsociety.com

Feature image courtesy of Steve Jurvetson, Creative Commons


20th Apr, 2016

Leeds welcomes Chinese crowdfunding delegation from Guiyang

It was with pleasure and excitement that I accepted Joanne Lavan’s invitation to present to her Chinese delegation from Guiyang earlier this month.

I’ve been fortunate enough to enjoy a few international trade missions, thanks mainly to my past work with Web-Translations, so I know the value of these types of exchanges.

Crowdfunding is in its infancy in China, so many are keen to learn from more mature markets, including the challenges we face and how we plan to overcome them. As one of the early P2P lending platforms, rebuildingsociety has seen a few ups and downs. During a meeting with the delegation, Kylie presented the role the regulator played in consulting with industry and shared examples of our responses to the consultation papers, which were ultimately used to help shape the compliance requirements of our new industry.

I was impressed by the presentation and efforts of the officials who have been hard at work making Guiyang attractive for Crowdfunding entrepreneurs. They ‘have the crowd’ and with the right infrastructure they envision their city as a global crowdfunding leader by launching China’s first crowdfunding exchange. They hope to list more than 3,000 crowdfunded companies in a secondary market within three years.

P2P Lending is a very popular form of alternate investment for many Chinese investors. No less than 75 platforms were launched in 2015, contributing to a total of 159 that raised approximately £654m in 2015.

We were invited to participate at the World Crowdfunding Conference in Guiyang in October. It will be interesting to see if the less stringent regulation promotes growth and to what extent lender confidence is affected from any misconduct. There has already been considerable fraud and run-away entrepreneurs, but the market continues to grow.

Chinese culture requires you to establish a relationship of trust before doing business. The courts and legal system need to catch up to facilitate loan enforcement. A key requirement of any P2P platform is the legal system within which it operates and the enforceability of contracts.

Over the years I’ve seen a few entrepreneur friends head east. I really enjoy some of the international conferences, but it’s always nice when they come to your home city.

By Daniel Rajkumar, managing director of rebuildingsociety.com


19th Apr, 2016

Updated Loan Conditions and Terms and Conditions

We’ve made some key updates to our Ts & Cs and Loan Conditions

As part of our continual effort to improve and strengthen our platform and the experience of our users, we have recently updated our Loan Conditions and platform Terms and Conditions. It is important to be aware of both documents, as the Loan Conditions form part of the Loan Agreement and dictate the contractual agreement between Lenders and Borrowers, and the Terms and Conditions govern the relationship between you (as a Borrower or Lender) and rebuildingsociety.com.

Here, we will take a closer look at the updated changes and see how they pertain to you as a Borrower or a Lender on our platform.

(more…)


29th Mar, 2016

Elite Training is aiming for the next level

Elite Training Assessing & Development provides teachers with training and qualifications on a flexible schedule. This company has brought first-rate training to future teachers in Wigan and Manchester. With a £50,000 loan from the rebuildingsociety community, Elite hopes to improve cashflow to hire additional staff and soon move to new premises.

A commitment to education

The three founders met when they were lecturers at a college together. They decided to start a company in an area they were all passionate about — teaching — in November 2012.

The company provides the same level of training and certification as other options but offers additional flexibility and customization.

“People trust our reputation and the qualifications we offer,” said Clodius Ngwenya, one of the directors.

Strong ethics

Elite strives to be a highly ethical business with a deep commitment to the communities it serves. That’s part of what drew Ngwenya to rebuildingsociety — those shared values made it a natural fit.

“Because we are a community interest company, we were looking for a funder who is ethical and understands the community side of things.”

Elite is offering personal guarantee from two of the directors as security for this loan. You can learn more about this opportunity on the application page and discussion.


18th Mar, 2016

Creative Building Maintenance is growing — and they need your help!

In more than two decades working in the office fit-out industry, Antony Neilson noticed a trend: clients would have to work with numerous contractors to get their entire office designed, outfitted and ready to go.

So in 2013 he created Creative Construction Group to be a one stop shop for businesses seeking new or renovated office space. Creative does everything from design the space, find the chairs and install the electricity. Today, listed as Creative Building Maintenance, the company seeks a loan of £70,000 in order to improve their cashflow, refinance existing debt, and invest in marketing.

A One-Stop Shop

Neilson strives to make it easy for companies to get their entire project off the ground with one contract.

“For 25 years, I’ve worked for the office fit-out type companies and building companies, and I put that all under one roof. That enables us to build a building, fit it out, and give the keys back to the client at the end. The majority of our trades are in house staff as opposed to sub-contractors. We do it all.”

This means more efficient schedules, better prices and happier, less-stressed clients.

The company aims to grow further and take on more facilities management work, which would mean consistent cashflow from longterm contracts. That’s one reason Creative needs a more robust marketing strategy so they can attract clients to this new aspect of the business.

A Solid Business Base

Creative is offering a personal guarantee with personal guarantee insurance as well as an all assets debenture to secure this loan. And, Neilson says he hopes the company’s strong financial prospects will help lenders feel safe in pursuing the opportunity.

“We’re looking to report our best year yet at the end of July from an accounts point of view. We have a good, solid business base. Along side that, I have the personal expertise of 25 years. I’ve personally said I would guarantee the loan as well. I’m willing to put my neck on the line to get to where I need to get to.”

And they’re headed, in part, to increased turnover that will strengthen the business overall. Neilson has a strategy to £1.8 million this year, £5 million by 2018, and £12 million by 2020.

Learn more about this loan opportunity on the application and discussion.


14th Mar, 2016

P2P Weekly: UK small business innovation breaks records, and other news

“UK Government Report: Innovation Growing as Officials Push to Make UK Best Country in Europe to Start a Company,” via Crowdfund Insider

According to UK government data, 53 percent of small businesses are pursing new products and services. Business Secetary Sajid Javid said: “From new disruptive business models to driverless cars, innovation can not only revolutionise the way we live our lives, it can bring real opportunities for businesses to tap into and grow. That is why we are determined to make the UK the best place in Europe to innovate and start a company…these figures show that businesses throughout the UK are already leading the way, delivering exciting opportunities across the nation. The number of companies innovating and coming up with new, dynamic ideas is on the rise – up 8 percentage points between 2012 and 2014, with over half of businesses now developing new products and services, some with the potential to revolutionise their industries.”

“CFPB Now Accepting Complaints on Consumer Loans from Online Marketplace Lender,” via the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

After months of mostly quiet talk about further regulating the alternative lending market in the U.S., the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is officially accepting complaints from consumers who encounter problems with online marketplace lenders. You can read the bureau’s statement above.

“Real-Time P2P Payment Platform Early Warning Live on BoA,” via Crowdfund Insider

Bank of America, one of the largest financial institutions in the U.S., will now process real-time P2P transactions through Early Warning’s clearXchange network. BoA joins numerous other banks, including JP Morgan Chase and Capital One, that use the network.


11th Mar, 2016

Fintech North spotlights alternative finance in North England

Mark your calendars for the 27th of April for an event that highlights the bursting alternative finance sector in the north of England.

Fintech North will be a packed day of events and speakers so alternative finance experts and rookies can learn, share their stories and network.

Rebuildingsociety and White Label Crowdfunding are organizing Fintech North as part of the Leeds Digital Festival. Featured speakers will include rebuildingsociety Managing Director Daniel Rajkumar and Tom Cheesewright, who created the Applied Futurist’s Toolkit. The day of programming will also include an innovation showcase chaired by Disrupts Magazine & The FinTech Times.

This event is one of the showcase events of the Leeds Digital Festival, which further highlights the prestige of p2p lending and crowdfunding in the digital and alternative marketplaces. We look forward to bringing the best minds in our industry together for this occasion, and we hope to see you there.

You can register for this free event and get more details here.

Agenda
09:00 – Registration, breakfast buffet & networking
10:00 – Opening address & 3 keynote presentations
12:00 – Q&A Panel
13:00 – Networking lunch
14:00 – Innovation Showcase – chaired by Disrupts Magazine & The FinTech Times
15.00 – Break
16:30 – End Keynote
17:00 – Drinks reception

Location: A Q L – 11-15 Hunslet Road, Leeds LS10 1JQ, United Kingdom


10th Mar, 2016

Your loan updates are now more streamlined and accessible

You asked, and we listened. We’ve rolled out new features that make it easy for you to get updates about loans you’re active on via your dashboard and throughout the site.

This is part of a broader strategy to improve the updates and communications our lenders receive about loans pre-completion, post-completion, and on the unfortunate occasion that they fall into arrears. This new feature will improve access to updates on loans you have bid on as well as completion and repayment information.

Information about the status of loans you’ve participated in is now available right on your user dashboard through the Loan Updates Tab, making it easy to see when there’s new activity on a loan that you should know about – including info on how we’re recovering any late payments:

You can also see these Updates on individual loan profiles under a separate Loan Updates tab – making it easier for you to distinguish between in-depth discussions and vital information pertaining to a loan’s progress:

We’re delighted to bring these improvements to your lender experience, and – as always – if you have any feedback, please email support@rebuildingsociety.com


10th Mar, 2016

Crowdfunding and P2P are booming in the UK, Nesta report confirms

Alternative finance claimed 12 percent of small business lending in 2015, a sizable share of a rapidly changing market.

That’s according to a report titled ‘Pushing Boundaries’ by Nesta in collaboration with the University of Cambridge. This report is part of an annual series from the institutions that analyzes the alternative finance industry, including P2P lending and crowdfunding. Another key takeaway is that the sector grew 84 percent in 2015 and facilited £3.2 billion in loans, investments and donations — nearly doubling over 2014. More than 1 million people invested via online platforms in 2015, and 254,721 individuals, projects, not-for- profits and businesses raised finance via online alternative finance models.

And that rapid growth seems poised to continue, especially as banks and other financial institutions get in on the action. Institutions are increasing their stake in alternative finance, as Nesta’s report demonstrates.

And, institutional investors are taking the online marketplace more seriously. About 45 percent of all platforms reported institutional involvement. Donation-based and equity-based crowdfunding grew exponentially in 2015.

Of the total market, peer-to-peer business lending comprises £1.49 billion, almost doubling the amount lent in 2014. £881 million of that is in non-real estate lending projects, like rebuildingsociety.com. The peer-to-peer business market experienced an increase in automated lending and in secured loans.

The report projects that the alternative finance sector will grow to more than £5 billion in 2016.

“With increasing public and business awareness and the introduction of the Innovative Finance ISA, opportunities are abundant for the alternative finance industry in 2016 as well as challenges. From the peer-to-peer lending side, the challenges for 2016 are likely to be deal origination, credit risk modelling and underwriting. For equity-based crowdfunding, the challenges are not too dissimilar. The focus is likely to be on deal flow, due diligence and dealing with business failures as much as successes.”

Nesta’s report concisely demonstrates the sharp growth of various sectors of the alternative finance sector. As these industries continue to grow, we’re thankful for institutions like Nesta that keep tabs on industry growth and trends so we can make the rebuildingsociety community even better.


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