Nordic peer-to-peer lender Fellow Finance is expecting growth in institutional interest as it looks to bring its business and consumer loan volumes back to pre-pandemic level.
The P2P lending platform revealed in a half-year update that the coronavirus outbreak had caused a 25 per cent annual drop in loan volumes due to restrictions on lending and investor caution.
“The spreading of the pandemic to Europe in the spring lead a significant part of our investor clients interrupting their new investments on the platform as a natural precautionary measure which resulted in decrease of the financing supply in our service,” Teemu Nyholm, interim chief executive of Fellow Finance, said.
“Simultaneously we tightened our credit criteria in both business and consumer financing to maintain the return levels of our investors. In addition, the central markets to us of Finland and Poland saw temporary regulation that limited the possibilities of intermediating and marketing of loans.”
Read more: Fellow Finance warns of lower profits
Nyholm said the platform is now focused on returning to lending and it facilitated €8m (£7.12m) of loans in August.
“We will continue investing heavily in the development of risk management tools and seek a heavier emphasis on the lower-risk products in our loan volumes,” he said.
“We still see a big growth potential in our investor accounts especially in the institutional segment and we believe to achieve significant success in that front by the end of the year.
“We will strengthen further our organisation in the selected business areas and invest in product development to enable faster implementation of new products.”
The half-year results showed turnover was down 19.8 per cent annually to €5.8m, pushing the First North Finland market -listed lender into a €726,000 loss.