WELLESLEY has said that the performance of its new bonds “has been positive” so far and has maintained the fee earnings of the business, as it reported a pre-tax profit for the second consecutive year.
The alternative property finance firm posted pre-tax profits of £100,000 for the year ended 31 December 2018, down from £200,000 the previous year due to increased spend on advertising and marketing.
Wellesley recently announced plans to wind down its peer-to-peer lending and mini-bond products as it shifts towards listed bonds.
“The outlook of the company remains positive, having obtained full Financial Conduct Authority approval in February 2019,” Wellesley said in its annual accounts, filed with Companies house.
“It will not engage in any new P2P activities.
“However, the firm will continue to market bond products to retail investors and manage the existing P2P book.”
In a recent interview with Peer2Peer Finance News, Wellesley managing director Andrew Turnbull heralded the opportunities presented by P2P but said that bonds were more suitable for their business.
“We don’t think there’s anything wrong with the P2P industry at all,” he said. “However, in the context of being a residential development lender, we took the view that bonds were a better product for our investors.
“Since leaving the P2P industry our business plan has been to migrate towards offering fully-regulated, listed bonds because, frankly, we think they give consumers a higher degree of protection than mini-bonds. In being able to offer a fully-regulated, standardised, listed, exchange-tradable product as a fully-authorised firm, it puts our customers in the best possible position.”