Over the past few weeks, peer-to-peer lending platforms have introduced a wave of new measures to mitigate the effects of the pandemic.
These decisions were not taken lightly, and they were clearly made with the wellbeing of investors and borrowers in mind.
Peer2Peer Finance News has been in close contact with a number of P2P investors and they have not been shy about expressing their views.
And these views have been overwhelmingly positive.
Several Assetz Capital investors got in touch ahead of the platform’s recent forbearance vote to tell us how vehemently they supported the platform’s plans. After the vote was returned, with just 1.7 per cent of investors voting against payment holidays for borrowers, one investor told us that it represented “a massive vote of confidence in Assetz Capital by its investors.”
Meanwhile, Funding Circle’s investors initially contacted us to express concerns about a lack of communication from their platform. Once Funding Circle announced plans to adjust transfer payments, return £22m to shareholders, and suspend secondary market activities, these investors seemed to be happier.
Of course, on the P2P Independent Forum, the usual battles were being waged between investors who were unhappy with the pace of the sector’s reaction, and the limitations that followed.
But overall, despite complaints about secondary market restrictions and communication concerns, investors appear to be behind the P2P market.
There is a sense that P2P investors see this as their opportunity to support the economy in a direct and meaningful way. This has been helped by the fact that a several platforms are helping to fund vital projects which may help ease the economic pressure of Covid-19. These include Crowd2Fund’s investments in personal protective equipment (PPE) for medical professionals, Loanpad’s role in the production of breathing aids for coronavirus patients, and Simple Crowdfunding’s support of the Save our Startups campaign.
With pro-active communication and a focus on investor satisfaction, P2P platforms should be able to weather the coronavirus storm with the support and understanding of their retail backers.