Three originators, 5000 investors, and 20 million EUR later
Much like excited parents celebrating their child’s growth, today we enthusiastically mark iuvo’s second birthday. During our second year, we became a licensed credit intermediary in Estonia: one of the most progressive and well-regulated P2P lending markets. We also added a third originator to the platform – iCredit Romania, thus allowing our users to open accounts in Romanian leu. Striving to cater to more markets, we started providing customer support in German.
Upon scaling our service offering, in 2018 we doubled our investors’ count to over 5000, we listed and funded 4 times more loans, and we increased the turnover on the market more than 5 times, reaching over 20 million EUR.
Results aside, we spoke to our CEO Ivaylo Ivanov to learn his thoughts on the P2P landscape of today, and his plans for iuvo’s development in the future.
Mr. Ivanov, now that you’ve monitored iuvo’s usage and popularity for two years, do you think investors are more open to FinTech solutions and P2P lending?
Definitely the segment is growing. Especially in the field of mobile wallets and payment transactions. Investments in the form of crowdfunding are also getting traction with P2P lending being the main driver. It’s responsible for over 60% of the accumulated growth. We’re seeing very positive signs in Germany, UK, Spain, the Nordics and the Baltics. The people we talk to are aware of the P2P business model and are including it in their savings mix.
Which do you think is the most engaged group of investors in terms of age, income, etc?
We’re attractive to people aged 25 to 60 years, who are aware of the importance of saving and investing, and are open to new technologies. Comparing us to their bank, they like the customer experience we offer and they love the interest rates they get with us.
Are investors already choosing iuvo over other instruments, or P2P lending is just a complementary tool in their overall strategy?
We’ve seen different cases. We talk to people that don’t want to deal with banks ever again. We also have investors that want to diversify their passive income sources – they have bank deposits, they invest in P2P, they sometimes have real estate or participate in investment funds. No matter how you feel about the investment options out there, the key is diversification.
How do people usually learn about iuvo? Do you observe a growing amount of referrals, do people recommend the platform to their friends?
We’re spreading the word about us through different channels. We use online advertising to help people find us, but we try to create a much more personal relationship afterwards. All new investors have been contacted by our team and guided through the process. We also take part in different events and invite our clients to come meet us in person. Recently we started hosting webinars where viewers can interact with us to give and receive feedback. We understand that when we’re talking about money, we need to earn your trust and I believe we are doing it step by step.
What advice would you give to newbie P2P investors?
I have two:
1) Diversify – always and forever
2) Let us guide you through the process. Iuvo has been our team’s life since we launched it and we’re the best people to tell you how to make the most of it.
Where is iuvo heading next – are you planning to expand to new markets, or start working with new originators in the next year?
We’re always looking to diversify the offerings on the market. We are going to add new international lenders with new loan products very soon. Of course, we won’t stop developing our traditional services – investments in new currencies and service in new languages are on the way. We’re also developing some exciting features on the platform that aim to make the user experience simpler and better.
Last but not least, we will focus on paying special attention to our loyal investors that believed in us and stuck to our service. We are preparing some offers specially for them.
What is your prognosis for iuvo’s growth by its third birthday?
If we’re able to keep the current trends of growth, we will be very happy with our work. Iuvo is one of the fastest growing P2P marketplaces in Europe and this speaks for itself.
Iuvo wouldn’t be a successful product if it weren’t for the great people behind it. Are you planning to expand the team in the next year?
We are expanding our team constantly. We grew 2 times in terms of staff in the past year and this will continue over the next one. Customer experience is key for us and this is where we will concentrate most of our resources. So expect a friendly call from us to ask you how you feel as part of iuvo!