(Updated August 2019)
What is Swaper?
Swaper is a crowdlending platform based in Riga, the capital city of Latvia. It was launched back in October 2016, and since then it has been growing steadily. As of August 2019, it had already financed loans for an accumulated value of almost 80 million euros and had more than 2,500 active investors.
Swaper facts and figures August 2019
Let’s begin with my Swaper review in 2019.
What type of loans are available?
Swaper offers short-term (usually 14 or 30 days) pre-funded unsecured consumer loans, and all of them come with buyback guarantee. It stands out for offering a high return of 12% to its investors in the loans offered.
Swaper is part of Wandoo Finance Group, a loan originator with active lending operations in Poland, Denmark, Russia, and Spain. Wandoo Finance Group employs more than 100 people and has developed and launched over 30 financial services and IT ecosystems in Europe and North America.
The loans offered in Swaper‘s marketplace are originated by its parent company Wandoo Finance Group.
Who can invest in Swaper?
To become a Swaper investor you need to be at least 18 years old, be a resident of a European Economic Area (EEA) country and have a bank account in a bank situated in an EEA country. An individual is recognized as a resident if he or she is a citizen, has a residence permit or is registered as a taxpayer in an EEA country.
Companies can invest through Swaper too. To comply with AML (Anti Money Laundering)/TF (Financing of Terrorism) requirements, additional information is requested from companies, such as registration documents, information about ultimate beneficial owners, identification of a company representative.
Currently, Swaper does not charge any fees to investors.
What are the possible ways of money transfer?
There are two possible ways of adding funds to your investor account: bank transfer and TransferWise. But due to AML/TF legislation requirements, the first transaction after registration must always be made by bank transfer from your personal bank account or company account. Only deposits from accounts in the same name as the Swaper investor account are accepted, and you can add several bank accounts (as long as they fulfill this titularity requirement).
What is the currency of investment and which is the minimum amount?
Swaper accepts transfers in all currencies. But payments received in currencies other than EUR or GBP will be automatically converted to the investor’s base currency account (that is EUR or GBP).
Currently, the minimum amount you can invest in a loan is, like in most crowdlending platforms, €10.
Is there a buyback guarantee?
At the time of writing this article all the loans offered by the platform are protected by a buyback guarantee. That means Swaper compensates investors for both the invested principal and accrued interest in case the borrower is more than 30 days late with the loan repayment.
Is there an auto-investment tool?
Although Swaper offers the possibility of investing manually, the platform is oriented to fully-automated investing. Actually, if you chose to invest manually, you hardly ever find loans to invest in. Almost all available loans are bought by investors using the auto-invest feature, so I strongly advise you to use it as well. I consider there isn’t any benefit in investing manually since all the loans return the same exact interest rate.
In the year I’ve been investing through the platform I’ve always used the auto-invest option, and it works simply perfect. I experimented some cash drag in the first months, but the loan volume has increased and those problems are now a thing of the past.
Is there a secondary market?
Yes. At the time of writing this Swaper review, the platform offers a secondary market in which investors can sell their loans to other investors.
Overall Information Table
|Launching date||October 2016|
|Loans funded so far||€76,430,331|
|Available currencies||EUR, GBP|
|Loan type||Short-term pre-funded unsecured consumer loans|
|Offered interest rates||12% (14% if qualified for the loyalty bonus program)|
|Buyback Guarantee||YES (in ALL loans)|
|Loans Shortage||Currently NOT (it used to be cash drag in the past)|
I’ve rated Swaper with four stars because you can experiment some cash drag occasionally.
The loyalty bonus program
If you invest funds over €5,000 (or equivalent amount in GBP), Swaper will reward your trust with its Loyalty Bonus, granting an additional +2% to the interest for new investments.
The Loyalty Bonus is granted when your total account value has been €5,000 EUR or more (or equivalent amount in GBP) for three consecutive months. Be advised that if your total account value drops that amount due to withdrawals for three consecutive months, you lose the bonus. The system checks the value of your account at the end of each calendar month. This means if your account value exceeds €5,000 in the middle of January, then January will already count towards your Loyalty Bonus check.
As you can read in my May 2019 portfolio review I decided to increment my investment in Swaper (adding €4,000) that month, in order to get the loyalty bonus. I exceeded the threshold on 14/05/2019, so my first loans yielding 14% have been automatically purchased at the beginning of August:
➡️ Intuitive and very easy to use platform, especially useful for beginners in the P2P lending world.
➡️ Returns from 12% with Buyback, which can reach 14% with the loyalty bonus.
➡️ Most loans are in the short term.
➡️ Loans are backed by a solid group such as Wandoo Finance Group.
➡️ Occasionally shortage of loans and associated cash drag. This is the main drawback that will afect my Swaper review.
➡️ Since all loans originators depend on the same parent company (Wandoo Finance Group), the loan originator risk is transferred directly into the platform. However, Swaper states that the high margin between borrower interest rates (in excess of 100% annually) and those offered to investors (12-14%) allows them to cover the cost of risk and operating expenses.
My Swaper portfolio
I have been investing in Swaper since 29th August 2018. The sign-up process was easy and pretty straightforward, and my first deposit registered in my account within 24h. Since then I’ve only used the auto-invest functionality, so my passive income has kept coming month after month in a hassle-free experience. There is nothing I have to check or adjust. It’s very easy.
In the following screenshot you can see the summary of my situation in the platform at the time of writing this Swaper review (August 19th, 2019):
And here you can see my Swaper income until July 2019:
Swaper review 2019: Final conclusions
My experience with Swaper during the year I’ve been investing through the platform has been very satisfactory. It used to experiment serious cash drag in the past, but now the volume of loans available has increased, and this problem has been almost fixed (although you can still suffer some cash drag occasionally). I must say it’s a very good option to diversify my crowdlending portfolio.
You can get steady returns of 12% from the first day, all loans come with a buyback guarantee, and are originated by a solid financial group such as Wandoo Finance Group. What is more, the interest rate you get for your loans can raise to 14% if you gain the loyalty bonus by investing more than € 5,000. And, without any doubt, 14% is a very high return for short term loans. Currently, this interest rate places Swaper in the TOP 3 of all the short-term loans crowdlending platforms available in the market regarding profitability.
Finally, the secondary market gives you the possibility of selling your loans in case you need cash in case of emergency.
For all the above, my Swaper review 2019 can only conclude it’s a great crowdlending platform to invest and diversify, especially if you reach the loyalty bonus threshold.
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