Has Kuflink changed during Covid?
Has our relationship changed with investors this year; do we talk to them in a different way, or is the message still the same?
Going into 2020 investors had already become more wary about P2P investment because of the failures of certain P2P platforms, such as Lendy. Potential investors were asking more questions about the security of their money and querying the quoted levels of return. We saw this as a good thing, because too many people had fallen for the hype from P2P platforms with neither the knowledge nor the expertise to operate but which had made claims that would subsequently not be backed up. People approaching us were now asking the right questions and were prepared to listen to all the pluses as well as the potential minuses that make up P2P investment.
Once COVID came along, conversations became more challenging. But by talking to investors openly, with details of our vetting process for borrowers, particularly those who needed time to get through COVID, we reassured most investors that payment breaks were needed and loan extensions for some so they didn’t pay too much default interest. 10-15% of our book had payment holidays but we still honoured interest payments to investors.
The conversations with our retail investors was about reassurance, having to educate them on what could happen in a worst case scenario and what our plans were during this period.
Throughout this time, we communicated with the whole investor base letting them know what we were doing and how we were performing, giving regular loan updates and letting our investor community know how much we had paid back to them while other platforms had stopped trading.
It has been tough but we have remained confident in our underwriting, systems and processes. We have shown our investors that we are able to trade in a downturn and still provide good returns to our investors.