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Peer2Peer Finance News | December 13, 2017

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RateSetter partners with Facebook chatbot Plum

RateSetter partners with Facebook chatbot Plum
Suzie Neuwirth

RATESETTER has partnered with Plum, an artificial intelligence-powered Facebook chatbot that enables consumers to save and invest automatically.

Plum’s algorithm identifies consumers’ spending patterns, income and bills, which it uses to calculate a small amount of money that will automatically be put aside every few days.

Users can talk with Plum on Facebook Messenger and ask it to save more money or transfer money back into their current account.

Plum said that its partnership with RateSetter means that people who are comfortable putting capital at risk can use the peer-to-peer lending platform to earn a higher rate of interest.

Read more: RateSetter’s borrowers have paid back £1bn

According to Moneyfacts, the average rate on easy-access accounts is 0.15 per cent, with the biggest nine banks averaging 0.04 per cent. In contrast, RateSetter investors have earned an average of 4.7 per cent.

Plum was founded by Victor Trokoudes and Alex Michael, who were part of the early teams at P2P money transfer service TransferWise and e-commerce platform Tictail respectively. It is backed by a number of successful entrepreneurs including one of the founders of short-term rental company One Fine Stay and a 500 start-ups microfund.

“We all know that we should be putting money away for the future, but even with the best intentions, sometimes we just don’t get round to it,” said Ceri Williams, head of investor operations at RateSetter. “Plum makes it easy for people to gradually build up a pot of money for the future, and we’re happy to give people who are prepared to take on some risk the option to earn a higher rate of interest. We’re keen to work with anyone who is changing people’s investing habits for the better and offering the nation a new and more fruitful way of making their money work for them.”

Read more: RateSetter: Savers prefer better returns to more protection          

“A quarter of people in Britain don’t save, according to recent figures from ING,” said Trokoudes. “One reason for this is because people don’t see instant and significant benefits from high street banks – these savings accounts as we know them are dead and rendered useless by many consumers, particularly millennials.

“Our aim is to enable every person in the UK to put money aside, whether that’s just enough for a rainy day, or for something substantial like a house deposit. We know that a lot of people feel either that they cannot commit to saving a specific amount per month, or are not motivated to save – so our ambition is to use technology to help them save with as little effort as possible.”

Read more: RateSetter updates lender terms ahead of provision fund changes