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Seedrs Venture Fund

I made my first investment on Seedrs in February 2019, it was WeGaw a mobile app startup using Satellite data from the European Space Agency, based in Lausanne, Switzerland.

My next investment was the Seedrs EIS 100 fund, to those that follow me on social media, I started referring to it as Seedrs Venture Fund. EIS 100, which stands for Enterprise Investment Scheme, set out to disperse the total investment over a 100 companies fundraising on Seedrs that qualify for the EIS.  The main benefits of EIS is that you can claim back 30% from the investment upon the completion of you self-assessment tax submission.

With more than a year passed since my first investment and with Coronavirus in full swing not just in the UK but the rest of the world, the question I ask how is my Seedrs Venture Fund performing?

The Seedrs investment porftolio dashboard indicates that 100% of all my investments, which currently stand at 92 companies are currently active, none of them have IPO-ed, were sold or acquired, but most importantly did not go bankrupt.

Currently there are three companies fundraising again; which are:

Crua Outdoors

Crua Outdoors based in Tralee, Ireland who did manage to qualify for EIS, even as a foreign company. They specialise in outdoor, camping tents, who have raised £70,005 for 8.8% as early as 2015, with shares priced in at the time at £2.60, but my round came in 2019 August, the value per share was already at £14.51, and with the current fundraiser overfunding by 187%, this means that the initial investors back in 2015 have seen their shares rise over 458%. The company’s valuation has increased from £720,200 to £5.99 million but already nearly 41% in equity has been sold and another 5% up for grabs.


Smarterly is an online service which aims to help people save and invest directly from their payroll, by integrating with employers is also currently fundraising. However, their pitch is not available on Seedrs, they are either preparing their new pitch or fundraising privately or off Seedrs platform. This would be their third fundraiser, the first happened in 2018, £1,625,570 raised for 13.15% equity valued at £10,735,000 with the price per share at £10. While my turn came again with the EIS fund on the second round, which meant an increase in price per share of 23% priced at £12.30, with £2,572,422 raised for another 13.3% in equity valued at £16,723,855, with 762 investors participating.


The last of my investments which is again currently fundraising is Goodbox, a contactless payments provider for charities and NGOs to collect money on the high-street from passers by. Again I only participated in the second round, the first one took place in 2018, raised £2,641,925 for 24.9% of equity, valued at £7,968,277 from 687 investors, with share price at £18.21. While my turn took in 2020, the price per share increased to £28.53 by 56.7%, the company raised £1,272,894, from 747 investors, only for 6.34% of equity this time, valuing the company at £18,797,675.

The reason I have focused on these three companies in such a detail, is because startups go bust most often then failing to raise money to keep going, and they are raising money because most often they are running out of cash to keep going. We could further find out about their financial well being by looking at the company house account submissions, that this blog is only meant to be an update for my overall Seedrs Venture Fund.

What were my top five investments by company?

I am not going to disclose how much I have invested in Seedrs, at least for now. Further, I would like to add that I have a strong view and investment philosophy about having a balanced and responsible approach to investing and having a diversified portfolio of companies. However, my top companies are as follows:


Hectare, an online market place for agricultural businesses and farming commodities, e.g. crops and livestock trading. I participated in the round with price per share set at £5 in late 2019, raising the total of £1,317,975, for 7.6% with the valuation of £16,005,500. While the first round took place in 2016, raising £150,000 for 15% equity, which meant you could own 1% of the company for £10,000, which three years later would have now been worth £50,000, with the price per share increasing from £1 to £5, over six fundraising rounds which gave up over 50% of the total equity.

The House Crowd

The House Crowd, a P2P investment platform in property. Raised £746,011 in their first round on Seedrs, offered 2.5% of the equity, with £28,920,388 valuation, share price at £6.86 from 469 investors.


CreditSpring, a monthly subscription based service that provides 0% interest loans. Raised £1,566,032 for 13.8% from 303 investors, valuing the company at £9,780,000, with share price at £9.78 which I participated in. This company had a second fundraiser again in March 2020, but in a private Seedrs fundraiser, as another £1,020,925 was raised from only 34 investors, and for only 7.28% equity, share price at £11.20, valuing the company for £12,993,792. This investment has almost instantly put me in the green, with £1.42 profit per share, or 14.5% increase.


Brickowner, a P2P investment platform in property for a medium to long-term. Raised £267,572 for 2.74%, share price £5.77, valuing the company at  £9,504,690. However, this was their 7th fundraiser on Seers, with the first one taking place in early 2016, raising £102,055 for 14.3% equity, valuation of £607,000 from 92 investors, and share price at £0.61, which has given the first investors an over 850% increase in share price over four years. The Brickowner has sold nearly 39% of its equity in the seven different fundraisers over the four years.

It is also interesting to compare the the valuation of Brickowner and The House Crowd and to see which why two such similar online businesses, P2P property investment platforms, are valuing share prices differently, and if there is an arbitrage for the same type of business.


Yielders, a P2P investment platform in property that yields rent payments until the property is sold and investments are returned to investors after a set of years. Raised £669,861 in late 2019, for 6.28% equity in the business from 479 investors, with the total valuation of £10,004,118, share priced at £7.89, which was their first round.

What is my Seedrs Venture Fund allocation according to sectors?

As we can see above from my investments, there is a heavy focus on finance and property, especially combined with technology, or what could be summed as Peer-to-Peer platforms, P2P for short. The main reason is my investment philosophy that the future is decentralized, a bit like Seedrs, venture funding democratised to allow people to invest in property backed loans who might not had ability to do so before the convergence of finance, property and online technology. Therefore, from the following Seedrs shareholding by sector we can see my total investments over 92 companies are spread as follows:

  1. 27% Property – part of this would include such companies as Brickowner and Yielders. I have also made investments in nHouse,
  2. 24% Finance & Payments – CreditSpring is the best example but also GoodBox would be included in this sector.
  3. 12.6% Saas/Paas (Software as a Service) – We Build Bots, Paperclip and already mentioned WeGaw.
  4. 11.9% Food & Beverage – Skinny Tonic, Drinkly, TheVeganKind, Quinola Mothergrain, Coconuts Organic, DryGro and The British Snack Co.
  5. 10% Energy – invested in companies such as Ripple, DeciWatt and Zeigo Energy.

Seedrs Venture Fund allocation according to countries

I am not going to list the countries here, as 95.7% investments were in companies based in the UK, this is mostly to do with the EIS100 fund, as it’s much easier for the UK based companies to quality for the Enterprise Investment Scheme, while many European companies who could quality for EIS, further information here, do not know or are not prepared to pay for the UK lawyer feeds and other admin costs.

As mentioned the WeGaw was the Swiss company, Crua Outdoors was the only odd one out to be based in Ireland and qualify for the EIS tax relief, as well not being part of the top five sectors. While the other company based in Spain, was The EU Startups publisher, this was made partially due to my interest in the publishing business, I am an owner of The EU Bubble online magazine. Plus Seedrs founder himself made an investment in the EU Startups, of £10,000, who have raised €73,001 for 5.58% from 81 investors, valued at €1,235,000 with €12.35 price per share. Shame about the startup conference in Barcelona that never happened due to COVID-19.

So how is my Seedrs Venture Fund looking after a year?

Well Seedrs portfolio overview is giving me the following:

IRR (Internal Rate of Return shows the annualised performance of your investments net of any fees (taking into account the impact of any shares bought or sold on the Seedrs Secondary Market as well as any other distributions received). Is currently at 0.08% – therefore not much of a gain after a year.

IRR (tax adjusted –  This is the IRR, as adjusted to take account of S/EIS tax reliefs.) aka this is the 30% return on the Enterprise Investment Scheme qualifying startups, is up by 18% once they are accounted and submitted in the self-assessment tax submission, and that is not difficult to do.

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Client Onboarding Experience for Bankera Business Account Using AutoKYC

Recently while scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed I came across a post from the crypto financial service provider Bankera, indicating that they have launched their new business accounts especially suited for crypto service providers.

As an operator of Crypto Cashback Coin Ltd, which is a Limited Company registered in the UK I have decided to open an account with them. This was primarily motivated by the fact that I have struggled to open a business account for the crypto service with a number of other SME banks, which I won’t name on here.

While I have not yet received the confirmation if my application with Bankera has been successful, I wanted to focus on my experience with their remote client onbaording, especially Know Your Customer part.

Bankera Client Onbaording

Bankera website, their graphical design, branding and overall marketing team has always impressed me. Their website is sleek, modern, the illustrations are youthful, full of colour and easy to remember and identify with the brand. Stock imagery is not how I would describe the brand. By the way they also offer personal as well as business bank accounts.

I was disappointed that the blog post I came across on Facebook did not have a CTA (Call-to-Action) to open the crypto business bank account, or even the link, and it was hard to navigate from the blog sub website into the main website. But eventually once I found my way onto the homepage the CTA to sign up was there, after scrolling past a few infographics.

Click Open Account on the homepage lead you to the short sign up box. With typical questions;

  • Company Name
  • Representative Name
  • Representative Surname
  • Email Address
  • Click to agree to their Privacy Policy

Last click to Sign Up – leads you to Check Your Inbox confirmation page:



This is where the client onboarding either makes or breaks financial services, because a user friendly experience can make it a streamlined process and increase with user acquisition. However, a badly designed registration and verification process could lead to drop off and your marketing budget as well as cost per user acquired go through the roof.

Bankera has chosen to use AutoKYC for verifying not only individuals for personal accounts but also businesses for their due-diligence process. As I clicked within the email to OPEN ACCOUNT, I was lead into kyc.autokyc.com website. It did well to notice that my laptop’s camera was of low resolution and requested my sign in via another device, aka a smart phone using a QR code, this was a streamline and good user experience. As most smart phones have a QR code, and the cameras on them are much easier to operate than a clunky laptop. Furthermore, I have also noticed that AutoKYC is predominantly run off unique URLs provided to different users onboarding.

The part where I had to take the picture of my passport’s front cover and inside page was already hard, as the screen where it had to fit was not mobile optimised and neither was the button to click ‘take the screenshot. I had to place the passport within the frame and then with another hand scroll down while holding the phone steady to click on the button to the screenshot.

The third part which involved me taking a selfie while holding the passport was really backwards, or I missed some button during the client onboarding. Because I had to do that without being able to revolved my screen, this means I had to ask my girlfriend to take a picture of me holding the passport, because there was no actual selfie function available. During the first take my girlfriend again did not find the ‘take a selfie’ button immediately and only realised that the button was below the frame and had to scroll slightly. The picture looked awful, but they are not always perfect and hopefully Bankera won’t judge if to open the account on picture alone.

Know Your Business

The last part was numerous, numerous questions, I had to type my legal name, which until even now I was not sure if they asked me for my company’s legal name or my own legal name on the passport.

Second, there was no Limited Company, aka Ltd, there was LLC but that is a United Stated version for a limited company. There was also a Limited Partnership, but Crypto Cashback Coin is not a limited partnership. I did choose other, there I added Ltd, below it it asked for registered number, which I presumed it’s the company’s number but yet again this could be different things in different countries.

I had to add my address minimum twice, I presume once for my company and once for my own personal address, as that of Managing Director. I was also asked if registered and trading addresses where different, which they are not, but this could of meant I had to add potentially up to four different addresses.

I did again got lost on the type of business question options, that is Crypto Cashback Coin, eventually I added it under ‘other’ as an Online Shopping Club.

Potential Explanation for this

While Bankera has its banking licence in Lithuania for e-money and payments, it also has separate registered company in Malta as Era Finance Ltd, hence Limited Company or Ltd, which is a similar company registration structure to the one in Britain. However, as anyone who has followed Bankera more closely it has also acquire a Pacific Private Bank Limited in British Virgin Island, which could explain why their focus is more Caribbean, US company registration structure focused rather than European or British. This is purely just a speculation, and it could be that they have chosen a US focused AutoKYC company.

I did eventually managed to complete their client onboarding process, just in time for my slightly late supper. Out of 10, I would give the client onbaording experience a five at best, the selfie taking process was terrible. If I did not have a second person with me, there was no way I could of manager to get my selfie picture taken.

Jeff Mwaura No Comments

How to Secure A Personal Loan with SmarterLoan

Do you need to consolidate your debt, take a vacation or remodel your home? You’re among the many people in North America who rely on credit. Whether it is for a personal or commercial reason, almost everyone at one point needs access to a loan of some kind. Smarterloan.com can help you secure a loan of up to $10,000.

Eligibility Requirements

There are several requirements a prospective borrower must meet to be able to request a personal loan from SmarterLoan. They include:

  • You must be at least eighteen years
  • Earn a steady minimum monthly income of at least $1,000 after taxes
  • Be a citizen of the U.S. or a permanent resident
  • Be in a position to provide work and home phone numbers and a valid email address
  • Own a checking account registered in your name

Once you submit your loan request, SmarterLoan will search their network and try to connect you with one of their partners.

Why SmarterLoan?

With many businesses advertising options for cash, why choose SmarterLoan? SmarterLoan is one of America’s most trusted resources for cash loans. It makes use of a vast network of reliable lenders from which customers can submit a request for a personal loan. Additionally, SmarterLoan offers a secure, fast and convenient service to help you find a personal loan that can work for you.

Safe and Secure

If you are getting a personal or business loan, you need to deal with a reputable company with an established track record. SmarterLoan prides itself on providing customers with a fast, safe, reliable and simple loan process. They’re dedicated to protecting the privacy of borrowers who seek loans or request assistance online. You can rest assured knowing your vital data is protected.

Fast and Convenient

SmarterLoan allows you to submit a request for a personal loan online. Once a lender approves your loan, you can receive your funds as early as the next business day. Have your banking account and personal information on hand before starting your request to complete the process faster.

Custom Educational Resources

SmarterLoan goes beyond connecting you with personal loan lenders. They partner with you and provide on their site valuable educational resources that can help you make an informed decision about personal loans.

Compare Options in One Place

One of the great things about SmarterLoan is that you can easily compare different companies and their products. Read reviews from past customers or share own experience with other site users. Compare loan types, terms, qualification requirements, interest rates and more.

Nonpayment Consequences

SmarterLoan works only with personal loan lenders who provide customers detailed information on terms and conditions before accepting the loan offer. Ideally, you should read and understand the terms of any loan offer presented to you.

The Bottomline

SmarterLoan offers a great new way for Americans to discover the best loan and financing options in the country. The business does a fantastic job connecting people looking for financing with reputable companies. If you are looking for any kind of loan in the U.S, consider smarterloan.com to make the best, educated decision.


Jeff Mwaura No Comments

Tickr Investment App Makes Investing Easy

Today tens of thousands of people, investing on average £120 each month, are using the Tickr investment app. 40% are female while half the investors with an average age of 31 are first-time investors.

Development of the Tickr app targets the next generation of investors who want to make money as well as have a positive impact on the world. Users can sign up and start investing with a minimum investment of £5.

About Tickr Investment App

Tom McGillycuddy and Matt Latham launched the business in early 2019. Both worked in investment management and had come to view the finance sector as largely inefficient industry. Businesses were earning revenue and profit indiscriminately, without questioning the source of the money nor its supposed impact.

To date, Tickr has raised £2.5 million in external funding, including more than £1 million from a Seedrs crowdfunding campaign.

Tickr allows investors to invest in ethical investment through ETFs. The app also provides access to publicly listed companies committed to positive impact investing. Impact investing is one of the fastest-growing sectors of today’s investment management industry. Globally, assets invested in impact are doubling each year, and are forecasted to hit $1 trillion by 2020.

Intended Impact

Development of the Tickr investment app is meant to fulfill the emerging demand for a new generation of potential investors. The interest of these investors is to grow businesses with a social impact benefit and positive investment footprint.

The investment is accessible for first-time investors who can put their money into specific companies spanning four separate themes; climate change, equality, disruptive technology, or a combination of the three.

1). The climate change theme includes renewable energy businesses that derive revenue from activities such as building wind farms.

2). Social Impact is investing in businesses that address gender equality and inclusion.

3). Disruptive Technology is investing in businesses that develop tech-based solutions for big social problems.

4) The fourth impact is a combination fund of the above three points.

Accomplishments to date

– In September 2018 Tickr raised an initial round of £860,000 from people in the investment management industry in Europe and the US

– Launched on both iOS and Android and have thousands of users across both platforms

–  It has grown from 3 to 14 staff members, with offices in London and Liverpool.

– FCA regulated as an Appointed Representative.

– The 2019 winner of Tech Nation Rising Stars

– Made it to the Wealthtech 100 annual list of the world’s most innovative Wealthtech companies in April 2019

Monetisation Strategy

The Tickr business model is clear as it charges everyone the same flat fee of 0.7% per annum on assets under management. Moving forward, Tickr expects to create additional revenue streams from the launch of Tickr branded ETFs.

Retail and institutional investors will be charged outside the app whilst it will be free to use in-app for Tickr users.


  • Promotes ethical investments
  • Low cost investing through ETFs
  • Tax-efficient accounts through investment ISAs


  • Access limited to mobile
  • Limited ETFs and market access
  • Startup risk is high (despite funds protection by FSCS)
Jeff Mwaura No Comments

Crowdstacker Investors In Limbo Over Bad Debts

Were you were among the many investors looking for a no-hassle income investment, packaged in a tax-efficient Innovative Finance ISA (IFISA)? If the answer is yes, you probably invested with the Crowdstacker peer-to-peer lending (P2P) platform.

The platform offers loans to businesses that have the likelihood of potential growth. But not everything goes to plan as we’ll deduce from this article.

About Crowdstacker

Crowdstacker was amongst the earliest P2P platforms to gain full permission from the FCA. On 6th April 2016, it became the first P2P platform to launch an Innovative Finance ISA. Later in 2017, Crowdstacker broke the record for funding when it completed UK’s largest crowdfunded P2P loan to date. It received funding of over £15m from Crowdstacker’s users with Seedrs fundraising £815,694 on 19th December 2018.

Crowdstacker’s investment process provided a list of businesses that wanted to borrow money from investors. An investor would then manually select the business they want to lend to from Crowdstacker. Investors were to earn interest every quarter and receive their capital at the end of the loan term.

Two businesses were kin to borrower money from Crowdstacker, ‘Amicus PLC’ and the ‘Quanta Group’.

Amicus Bad Loans

Amicus is a short term property lending business. Lenders loaned their money to Amicus through Crowdstacker. Thereafter, Amicus loaned on a short- term basis to property developers, landlords and property professionals. These loans were known as bridging loans.

As fate would have it, Amicus went into administration in December 2018. The shocking twist in events that followed raised questions about the transparency of the P2P industry. Lately, the amounts lent through P2P platforms have increased leading to an increase in scrutiny.

Amid concerns that it may struggle to recover funds from Amicus, Crowdstacker investors are increasingly critical of the P2P lending platform,

Amicus’s subsidiaries were sold without prior agreement from Crowdstacker, with the proceeds going to another creditor.  This development raised questions on whether the platform will be able to recover investors’ money.

BurningNight Bad Loan

A similar case happened in 2017 when bar chain operator BurningNight raised more than £7.5m from investors via Crowdstacker’s platform. The target returns were 7% per annum over a three-year period. Investors were informed that the loan was secured over the assets and business of BurningNight with a first-ranking debenture. Freehold and leasehold UK properties were the purported assets.

Later that year, it emerged that BurningNight’s bars were underperforming and one of the company’s subsidiaries, B&W Logistics bought them in December 2017. However, B&W Logistics went bust in June 2018 and BurningNight itself went into administration in September the same year.

In December 2018, Crowdstacker emailed investors informing them of the verdict of the appointed BurningNight administrator. The administrator discovered that certain assets of BurningNight’s subsidiaries were sold to another company and the proceeds dished out to a third-party.

Why BurningNight assets were sold under the noses of Crowdstacker officials when the platform purportedly had first charge over the loan is still a mystery to many. Crowdstacker claims they’re waiting for the final verdict and are urging patience to allow the legal process to play out. But there’s little chance of investors recouping their capital investment in full as Crowdstacker seems “clueless” in their recovery approach.

Jeff Mwaura No Comments

Creditspring Review

Two former bankers – Neil Kadagathur and Aravind Chandrasekaran – founded London-based Creditspring in September 2018. Creditspring is a trading name of Inclusive Finance Limited and is a direct lender authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

Creditspring is an innovative short-term lender that offers customers a new way to deal with unexpected expenses. In return for a fixed monthly membership fee, you can borrow as much as £1,000 a year. The company’s aim is to provide consumers easy access to credit in a safe, simple, and cheaper way.

Monetisation Strategy

Creditspring generates revenues mainly from the membership fees. The costs of Creditspring Core is £6 per month while Creditspring Plus is £8 per month. There’s also a secondary revenue generator from the company’s Financial Stability Portal.

In return, you can borrow £250 or £500 on two separate occasions throughout the year at 0% interest. You only pay back what you borrow plus the monthly fee. This removes the risk of your debt spiraling because of massive interest charges.

Who Is Eligible For Creditspring?

Creditspring is limited to people who have an annual income of at least £20,000. Plus you have to be a member for 14 days before you can draw your first advance. You’ll also be subject to credit and affordability checks. The 14-day waiting period allows you to use your advances as a back-up plan for future emergencies.

The firm insists that you will never pay more than £96 over any 12 months period. But if you opt not to take out any loans, you will still pay the full membership fee of £72 per annum. The clarity offered by Creditspring is a big plus, knowing that you won’t have to pay any interest, as well as your expected repayments.

Pros and Cons of a Creditspring membership


  • The monthly fee should be comfortably manageable for most people.
  • Creditspring membership can offer you a fair degree of peace of mind.
  • You won’t lose time searching for and applying for credit when a financial emergency strikes.
  • A rise in credit score from the membership subs and the loan repayments allows you access better interest rates in the future.
  • The loans are likely to be cheaper than a similar high-cost short term loan.


  • The minimum income requirement of £20,000 p.a. may put the service out of reach of some who might benefit most.
  • The 14 days waiting period may not be an option if you need money fast.
  • If you end up not needing to borrow, you’ll still lose the membership fees.
  • Your credit score will suffer if you pay your monthly membership fee late.

The Bottom Line

Innovative lenders such as Creditspring offer an alternative to payday-style urgent loans. Although interest is 0%, the cost of credit is covered in the membership fee.

If you take out short term loans on a semi-regular manner and meet Creditspring’s eligibility criteria, then this is a viable facility. But if you don’t take out a loan during the year, then you’ve effectively paid an interest rate of infinity percent.

Jeff Mwaura No Comments

Airsorted Online Platform Review

Airsorted is an online platform established in 2015. The firm offers account management, guest vetting, price optimisation, and replenishment services. Their headquarters are in London, England, GB EC1V7LQ. Founder and CEO James Jenkins-Yates has an approval rating of 86%. Airsorted has approximately 50 employees and an annual revenue of £25 million.

To help fuel further growth – including expansion to Sydney, Australia – Airsorted has raised £13.3 million in 4 rounds, the latest round being June 2019. Concentric led the round with participation from some of Airsorted’s investors including Atami Capital and Pi Labs.

The booming sharing economy and websites such as Airbnb are popular for homeowners looking to make some extra money and travelers looking for somewhere comfortable to stay. In 2018, over 2 million people used Airbnb to visit the UK and over 3 million Britons used the site while holidaying.

How Does Airsorted Work?

The host signs up to the site and commits to renting out their homes for a minimum of eight weeks per year. In return, Airsorted manages the booking.

Hosts pay Airsorted 12% of their earnings. Assuming you’re renting out your place for 46 nights, the average Airbnb host in the UK makes £2,000 a year renting their place. Take off the Airsorted fee and it drops to £1,760. For someone using the site specifically to make extra money, this is quite a large chunk wiped off.

Airsorted will manage the entire listing for you. This includes the account itself, guest communication, your home photos, professional cleaning, and laundry.

The company also installs a police-approved key safe at each property it looks after so that guests can check-in whenever they want.

For the cleaners, Airsorted works like Uber taxi drivers. The cleaners sign up and are vetted by the company. Airsorted currently has roughly 500 cleaners in 22 cities around the world who all interact with the app.

One extra perk of the service is that hosts can set preferences, selecting the level of control to dictate how much freedom they give Airsorted to manage their property.

Why Airsorted?

Renting out your home or your spare room for a night is a popular way of making some extra money. But what happens if you’re on holiday in France and your tenant calls to report a flooded kitchen or broken washing machine?

The hassle of handling the repair and the costs involved can be too demanding, making the hassle of making that extra 200 quid seem a tad tedious. Airsorted promises to take care of such emergencies – for a fee.

Bottom Line

It’s not by accident that the design of the Airsorted website gives the impression of an Airbnb spin-off. However, while the two companies work parallel to each other, there is no official link between them.

According to founder and CEO James Jenkins-Yates, he sees it as a benefit for guests to know when they are booking a professionally managed property. This gives the guest confidence that the experience is going to be of a certain standard, or at the very least, provide assurance that a listed property does exist.

It’s only a matter of time and trust before Airsorted becomes a well-known brand, as it piggybacks’ on the success of established unicorns.

Jeff Mwaura No Comments

Crowdproperty Review

Crowdproperty is a peer-to-peer lending platform that specializes in giving loans to small real estate developers. They use Brismo, an independent market-leading provider of loan performance data to verify each loan. Mike Bristow, Andy Hall, and Simon Zutshi founded Crowdproperty in Birmingham in 2014.

The three co-founders background is in the real estate sector and have extensive experience in the selection and management of real estate portfolios.

To date, Crowdproperty has lent around 50 million pounds on properties valued at over £120 million. The firm currently has over 8,500 investors. The company is both solvent and financially steady, with a perfect record of closing at 1.1 million pounds round of capital funding.

Crowdfunding site Seedrs conducted the campaign with contributions from 575 investors and a pre-money valuation of £15.7 million.

Crowdproperty managed to break even in 2018, and the same results are expected in 2019. This and other factors add to the stability of the firm considering many Peer to Peer lenders are still operating at a loss.

Crowdproperty Regulation

Crowdproperty is authorised and regulated by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) with full permissions under FCA number 723959. The firm gained FCA permissions in September 2017. It’s important to note that the FCA is not the same as the FSCS (Financial Services Compensation Scheme), thus capital is not secured as it would be in a bank.

Registration and Conditions for Investors

Registration with Crowdproperty is open to people living outside the UK. But only EU citizens who can provide proof of residence in the EU can invest. Plus the platform requires its investors to have a bank account with an English entity.

You don’t have to live in the UK to open a bank account there. Many banks, especially online banks don’t ask for proof of residence to open an account.

Who Can Borrow From Crowdproperty?

Crowdproperty lenders lend directly to the borrowers who have experience in property development. Crowdproperty knows many of these developers and the firm trusts them as they are return clients who have taken out loans for other developments.

Loan agreements are directly between the lender (investor) and the borrower. Crowdproperty only acts as a middle man, managing loans, payments and debt collection. Should it be required, Crowdproperty can add an extra layer of safety with its ability to take over and manage projects to completion and sale.

This is a better option than having to repossess a defaulted property which can take years to sell and dispose of. Instead, developments could be completed and sold in a matter of weeks or months.

Is Crowdproperty A Safe Investment?

Crowdproperty’s real estate experts thoroughly evaluate and carry out a rigorous Due Diligence on each project proposal, and does background checks of its partners. Each project must meet a criterion of 25% return on cost and loans do not exceed 70% of the LTV (Loan To Value). For larger loans, loans are staggered in tranches.

The firm only makes loans on properties in which it can register such loans as the first load. In case of default, Crowdproperty will have preferential rights over the property.

Pros and Cons of Crowdproperty


  • Established in 2014 and with proven experience
  • Authorised by the FCA and regulated since 1 November 2017
  • Simple registration process
  • One hundred percent return on investment
  • Profitability target of 8% annually
  • The first legal charge for security


  • The secondary market is non-existent
  • There’s no buy-back guarantee
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CrowdLords Property Crowdfunding Platform

CrowdLords is a two-sided, residential Buy-to-Let crowdfunding platform that brings together Investors and Landlords. Instead of CrowdLords buying the property, they act as intermediaries between the landlord or developer and investors. Launched in 2014, CrowdLords is registered as a limited company with registration number 08868588 in Hook, United Kingdom.

How does it Work for Landlords?

CrowdLords allow landlords to raise funds for a property investment without the need of going to a bank and take out a buy-to-let mortgage. The landlord relies on crowdfunding to gain the cash. Once you identify the property you wish to invest in, CrowdLords will appraise development and refurbishment issues. The minimum investment amount is £5,000. It’s the landlord’s prerogative to calculate the percentage of the rental income and property capital growth to offer the investors.

CrowdLords will value the property and if satisfied with the project, they’ll list on their website for investors to put in their money. After reaching the target, the money is pooled together into a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) which will buy the property. The SPV overseer is an independent director. Both the landlord and investors will have shares in the SPV.

The landlord’s responsibilities include maintenance and running costs. The landlord will receive the money once the independent director has approved the expenses.

How does it Work For Investors?

Before you can commit your money to CrowdLords, you first need to complete a one-off assessment to ensure you understand the risks involved. After approval, you’re free to browse the investments on offer. To invest you’ll need a minimum of £1,000.

How does CrowdLords Investments Work?

Each investment covers a set term, of 1, 3 or 5 years and defined by the landlord. Assuming the property is occupied, the investor benefits from a percentage of the rental income over this period, paid as a quarterly dividend.

At the end of the specified years, the landlord can continue by relisting the property on CrowdLords or sell the property on the open market. The investor will get a portion of the sale if the property has increased in value. If the landlord is a non-performer, the independent director appointed to the SPV can intervene to help resolve any issues.

The Fees

  • Landlords pay a £500 listing fee as well as a ‘success fee’ of 5% of the total amount of investment capital raised.
  • There is a ‘handling fee’ of 1% of all income paid out to shareholders. 10% ‘investment fee’ on the capital gain on the property being sold is also charged, but this is only when the investment was profitable.

Raising Capital

Despite being denied the opportunity to raise money on CrowdCube, CrowdLords is raising capital through private investment and crowdfunding such as Seedrs. According to Seedrs fundraising history, CrowdLords investment obtained so far is:


11-Dec-2014 – £150,000.00

14-Jun-2019 – £152,490.00

Whilst in Beta, CrowdLords is offering 80 shares at £5.00 per share. Share price history is as below:

  • £5.00 – 24 June 2019 (Current price)
  • £0.61 – 30 December 2016
  • £0.65 – 22 June 2016
  • £2.50 – 11 December 2014

There is an absence of liquidity in property investments and currently, CrowdLords lacks a formal secondary market. This means you should only invest money you will not need in the short-term. Nonetheless, CrowdLords rates of return are significantly higher than the one’s banks and building societies offer. They’re also relatively unaffected by changes in the stock market.

Jeff Mwaura No Comments

Monese Current Account Review

Monese is a financial services provider based in the UK. Established in 2015, Monese provides mobile banking services, streamlined current accounts, and modern finance to both UK and Eurozone residents. The company takes mobile banking a step further by allowing customers to create an account without a U.K address.

U.K residents can add funds to their account and prepaid debit card from 40,000 locations including Post Offices or any Paypoint location. Monese also integrates with your phone’s mobile wallet allowing you to make direct payments from your Monese account through Google Pay or Apple Pay.

Monese Current Account

The Monese current bank account is simple to open even without a perfect credit score or documentation for utility bills. The account offers services similar to a standard bank account. These include budgeting, direct debits, cash at ATMs, receive GBP or Euro bank transfers, debit cards, and much more.

Is Monese Safe?

The FCA under the Electronic Money Regulations 2011 (900010) has authorised Monese Ltd to issue electronic money and payment services. Furthermore, Monese uses best practices to protect your money and secure your personal information. A network of stable European banks helps store all the transfers made to Monese current accounts. In case the company should go bust, customer funds are ring-fenced to protect your money from being reinvested by Monese.

Monese has also developed innovative technologies and processes to protect accounts against unauthorised access. This adheres to the latest standards in financial security. The company is a member of CIFAS and works with major banking services to fight against fraud.

Accessing your Monese account from a single mobile device prevents any possibility of someone gaining control of your account. Monese uses a secure multifactor authentication to verify identities including Touch ID, 3D Secure and Face ID biometric recognition.

How to Transfer Money with Monese

Monese works like digital-only accounts via the app which has multiple tabs for different aspects of the account including:

  • Debit card – The Monese debit card performs the same functions like a traditional debit card. It’s also prepaid and contactless for extra convenience.
  • UK bank transfers – You can pay your bills or send money to friends and family with Monese bank transfers which use the Faster Payments Service that takes between 2 to 4 hours.
  • Foreign transfers – You can transfer money abroad into eight different currencies using the “interbank rate”. The transfer takes between 2 to 4 working days.
  • Foreign transfer from Eurozone accounts – If you transfer money with a Euro account through a SEPA payment, the payee will receive the money by the next working day.
  • Pay contacts – You can make payments or transfer money to friends and family straight from your phone’s contact list.
  • Standing orders – You can set up a standing order to make routine payments for specific amounts, dates or payee via a managed in-app.

Monese is a great option for digital nomads and travelers looking to open an account quickly in a different country. You can access fee-free card payments and ATM withdrawals abroad which is impossible with traditional bank accounts. If you need to deposit cash in your account regularly, Monese deposits are free making it a better option over other UK challenger banks such as Monzo and Starling.