Some weeks ago I already announced Bondster and now it is time to take a closer look. Czech private equity company CEP Invest owns Bondster. Further there is a strategic partnership with the loan originator ACEMA, which I know from Mintos. ACEMA is a heavywheight in the Czech nonbanking loan market with only a little short of 20 years of experience in this market. I guess these are solid preconditions.
Sign up, Cashback and Fees
On Bondster retail and company lenders can invest money, if they have got a banking account withing the European Union (plus Norway and Switzerland). You can sign up with this link. If you add these four digits 4985 to the Promocode field on the bottom of the form you get 1 percent cashback for the first three months (same for me). The cashback is calculated on your average investment during the first three months. The funds will be credited on your investor account after 30,60, and 90 days. Further there are no fees for the first three months. Afterwards the marketplace charges 1 percent annualy on your invested funds. The fees are directly subtracted from your received interests. So basically you can test the platform for three months free of charge and get an extra cashback.
Currencies and types of loans
CZK (Czech Krona) and Euro are available for investments at the moment. With CZK there is sort of an instant access savings account (like Bondora Go und Grow), which yields 3.9 percent annualy. I doubt this is very interesting for Euro investors, but I wanted to mention it anyway.. Additionally there are loans which are secured with property, but only seldom they are on the marketplace. The biggest part of the loans are Guaranteed Liquidity (GL) and Buyback (BB). Both of these types come with a buyback guarantee on principal and accrued interest, after 60 days. The GL loans provide a possibility to exit before maturity, but this comes with a cost of 1 percent of the principal amount. As most loans are annuities with monthly installements, the effect of the fee reduces with increasing duration of the loan. The buyback loans do not provide this early termination option, but yield much better ( currently 12%) and come with a duration of a few months. I can forgo the liquidity feature because of the buyback and the relatively short duration. Minimal investment per loan is 10 Euro.
Bondster offers an autoinvest feature, which seems to be a little complicated on first sight. This has to do with the many options you can set. Therefor I made my first investments manually, which took some time as I had to confirm every investment . In my next Bondster post I will explain the mechanism in detail.
I find Bondster interesting as it presents a regional alternative to the Baltics. Another positive point is that ACEMAis on board, which I already know from MIntos. As always with these types of loans the quality of the loan originater is key. There are some unknown originators on the marketplace. I will try to gather more information on them and share my thoughts in the coming weeks. By the way, the website is also available in English.
Questions? Post them here.