Fast Invest P2P Lending Platform Review
Fast Invest is a peer to peer lending platform offering loans from multiple European lenders. It started in 2015 in the United Kingdom (or Lithuania) and it currently has more than 30.000 daily users.
- Launched: 2015
- Headquarters: UK (virtual office)
- Loan types: Consumer Loans
- Loan terms: up to 1 year
- Interest rates: 9-13%
- Loans funded: ~55 million EUR
- Investors: ~40000
- Loans from: Spain, Poland, Denmark, Iceland
- Fees: no fees
- Minimum investment: 1 EUR
- Currency: EUR, PLN
- Secondary market: no
- Auto-invest: yes
- Buyback guarantee: yes
- Accepts investors from: EEA countries, Australia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Kuwait, Malaysia, Montenegro, New Zealand, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, United Arab Emirates
How does Fast Invest work
Fast Invest is a p2p lending marketplace comprised of 4 actors: borrowers, loan originators, investors and Fast Invest.
Fast Invest collaborates with 8 loan originating companies. Since they don’t disclose who they are, we only know they offer unsecured consumer loans from Denmark, Poland and Spain.
The loan originators publish their loan portfolio on the Fast Invest platform, and investors can invest in these loans either manually or through the auto-invest tool. The loan terms range from a few months up to 1 year.
If a loan is late with their payments, Fast Invest buys back the loan from the investors after 3 days. The buyback feature is different from the one offered by other p2p lending platforms in 2 ways:
- the loan is bought back after only 3 days (as opposed to 30, 60 or 90 days on other platforms)
- Fast Invest is the one guaranteeing the buyback (while on other p2p consumer lending marketplaces the loan originator covers the buyback)
The biggest downside when investing in Fast Invest is that there is no secondary market to exit your investment before the loans mature. If you want to exit your investment early, you can sell your investment back to Fast Invest, and you’ll receive your invested funds in less than a day. The downside is that you’ll lose all the interest earned up until then on that loan.
For example, let’s say you invested 100 EUR in a loan, and you received 5 EUR in interest before you decided to sell back your loan. If you sell your loan before it matures, Fast Invest will give you back 95 EUR (100 EUR minus the already received 5 EUR).
If a loan originator goes bankrupt, the investors are not affected, as Fast Invest is the one covering the buyback guarantee.
If Fast Invest goes bankrupt, Fast Invest says investors funds are separated from the company assets. Based on their database, the loan originator would keep paying their loans directly to the investors.
A more in-depth look at Fast Invest
While their corporate headquarters is in the UK, the UK address is just a virtual office. Their main office is in Lithuania, where their employees live and work.
I don’t know why they keep their office in the UK since they don’t offer UK loans and they don’t accept UK investors (due to FCA regulations). Maybe it’s easier to find business partners in the financial capital of Europe. Since I don’t like to speculate, I’ll stop here.
Fast Invest also tried to attract investor funds through an ICO during 2018, but it wasn’t successful and they silently removed it from their website and never said anything about it again. It’s a bit dishonest since most investors were surely interested in this. An honest company should be able to talk about their failures the same way they talk about their successes.
The company currently has around 25 employees (according to their website) and they’re searching for new hires. You can check more about them on their LinkedIn profile.
Fast Invest has a regular presence on social media and also posts regularly on their blog. Although their blog posts look like the typical content farm posts, with no relevant content in them and nothing related to the actual Fast Invest business. It’s only corporate BS, articles you pay 10 USD for on iwriter.com. So, it’s not worth following.
Becoming a Fast Invest investor
You can open an account from anywhere in the world. The full list of accepted countries is the following:
Austria, Australia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Belgium, Bulgaria, Switzerland, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Germany, Denmark, Estonia, Spain, Finland, France, Gibraltar, Greenland, Greece, Hong Kong, Croatia, Hungary, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, India, Iceland, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, Montenegro, Malta, Malaysia, Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand, Oman, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Saudi Arabia, Sweden, Singapore, Slovenia, Slovakia, San Marino, Turkey, Taiwan, Province of China, Holy See (Vatican City State).
You can only deposit funds in EUR or PLN currency, so you’ll need a bank account that operates with these currencies.
In order to withdraw funds, investors are asked to provide a copy of their national ID card or passport.
Fast Invest offers unsecured consumer loans from Denmark, Poland and Spain. You can invest in parts of the loans offered any amount starting from 1 EUR.
There’s little information offered on each loan: payment schedule, loan term, interest rate, age and location of the borrower, and loan amount.
The thing I like most on the Fast Invest website is their statistics page.
Since any late loan is bought back in 3 days, the income is very predictable, and you can check this on the stats page. My average income so far has been at around 49 EUR per month, for the 4000 EUR invested.
You can invest either manually in each loan, or through the auto-invest tool. Since all loans are covered with a buyback guarantee by Fast Invest, and the loan details are not enough to make an informed decision, I see no point in not using the auto-invest tool.
You can also use one of the default auto-invest settings Fast Invest is offering, but that would just mean you’ll miss out on potential earnings. With just 5 minutes, you can do a better auto-invest setup that will give you better returns than the preset Beginner/Professional/Expert setups.
- Last update: September 2019
- Started Investing: August 13th, 2018
- Current value: 4538 EUR
- Profit: 518 EUR
- Annual return: 14.12%
I’ve gradually added funds to my account until I reached around 4000 EUR in invested capital. When I started investing, there were a lot of loans offered with 15-16% interest rate. Since then, the interest rates lowered, and they’re now at maximum 12-13%.
With the 3 days buyback guarantee, Fast Invest is even now one of the best performing p2p consumer lending platforms in my portfolio.
Conclusions on Fast Invest
Fast Invest is for me a mix of good and bad.
Fast Invest has a great user interface, high-yielding loans, and a buyback guarantee on all loans to protect your funds. The auto-invest function is easy to use and allows you to completely automate your investments on the platform.
I like the simplicity of the website. I’ve added some funds a few months back, set up an auto-invest profile with the option to reinvest any profits into new loans. Now I’m just waiting for my portfolio to grow without me doing anything.
Fast Invest is very opaque when it comes to disclosing their business details.
They don’t disclose any details on how they make money. Or what fees they charge their loan originators. Or any financial statement. Given the fact that they cover the buyback guarantee, a financial statement showing they have enough capital or a provision fund to cover for loan defaults seems reasonable. Still, they don’t do it.
For now, investors don’t seem to care much about these things. The number of investors registered on the platform more than doubled in the past year.
Risk and returns summary
- Transparency: 1/5
- Loan security: 3/5
- Liquidity: 4/5
- Account security: 5/5
- Track record: 3/5
- Returns: 4/5
Final score: 3.3
Fast Invest would be a great crowdlending platform if it would improve its transparency. Without this, it’s a high-risk and high-return investment option.