Growth Street Review
Growth Street Declares “Resolution Event” for Retail Investors & Moves into the Institutional Space. – Growth Street Review
***Review left posted for historical purposes***.
What is Growth Street?
Growth Street is (was) a medium size Peer to Peer lender. Offering great returns for 30 day lines of credit and invoice financing to businesses throughout the UK.
My Experience with Growth Street
Latest Update June 17th 2020
Based on the article linked to below, it appears Growth Street will now move in to the institutional space.
www.p2pfinancenews.co.uk/2020/06/15/growth-street-exits-p2p-lending-space/ Article is from a paid site but you can read it by going with Chrome incognito mode and copying and pasting the link above.
This really kind of irritates me as it appears they are saying “oh well, bad luck” to retail investors while looking after themselves.
Update June 15th 2020
Growth Street today (June 15th) declared a “Resolution Event” which will likely take them in to bankruptcy. Investors funds will be lumped together and borrower defaults will be taken by all investors.
Here is the email which was sent to investors (click to enlarge):
June 4th 2020 – My COVID-19 Peer to Peer Lending Strategy – Here’s a post I wrote on my take on the current situation.
Funds in Growth Street are still locked up as they are still in the midst of the “liquidity event”. They have sent out several emails saying they are working to resolve the situation so lenders can withdraw their capital. They are working with other organizations to try and refinance some of the debt, among other things. Currently they are about two thirds the way through their 90 day “liquidity event” which if not resolved before, will turn in to a “Resolution Event” which will then mean they request that all borrowers repay their loans and could put them in to bankruptcy. Growth Street regularly send out emails updating investors on their situation. They try to be positive, but reading between the lines, I’m not so sure. Time will tell.
My Growth Street Strategy.
Once I get my remaining capital back (about 13k), I will likely have to consider seriously if I ever invest with Growth Street again (assuming they are still around).
The Obvious Investor – Easy-Info Table© – Growth Street Review
Overall Rating*: (1 / 5) Who can invest: Loan Currencies: £ Estimated Return: 5.3% My Actual Return
0.0% My Calculated XIRR: 0.0% Risk Rating*: Resolution Event - Early Exit: No, Min. Investment: £10 Deposit Funds: By bank transfer. Usually takes 24 - 48 hours for BACS. Can be same day for Faster payments. Auto-Invest: Yes Manual Invest: No Lending To: Agreement directly with borrowers. Loan Types: Business credit lines & invoice financing Default Rates: 8 defaults to date (before COVID19). Loans Amortize: No. Loan Security: Yes.
Loans secured by property, debentures
or personal guarantees
Provision Fund: Yes Time to Invest: Medium.
Can take a few days depending on loan availability
Time to Mange: None (auto-invest) Lender Fees: No Payments Received: When loan is fully repaid. Amount Lent: £460m + Number of Investors: 2,500+ Loan/Dflt Stats: Yes, Click Here Regulated: Yes: FCA Location: HQ - London, UK. Launched: July 2014 Website: www.growthstreet.co.uk Email: [email protected] Telephone: 0808 123 1231 (UK) IFISA/IRA: No longer accepting retail investors. Cashback**: No longer accepting retail investors. How to Sign Up**: No longer accepting retail investors.
Growth Street – Overview
Growth Street were launched in 2014 in the UK.
In the 5 or so years they have been in business, they have found a niche in the short-term financing business. Providing a very reasonable 5.3% annual return, while only tying your money up for 30 days at a time.
This means, although there is no “quick access” account as there is with lenders such as Assetz Capital, Loanpad, Lending Works, RateSetter or Landbay, you can still always be sure to get your capital back within 30 days if you need it, and get 5.3% annual returns, instead of the 3%-4% offered by the other lenders short term accounts.
Personally I use Growth Street P2P as a store for money I may need in the future which I know I can get access to in 30 days or less. In my opinion, 5.3% interest is very good for an account that you can access in this amount of time.
Although Growth Street statistics are excellent. They haven’t had to deal with a major recession yet so only time will tell how they fair when that happens, but the fact that money is only tied up for is 30 days means if I feel things start to get dicey, I will just stop automatically reinvesting my money and have it all back in 30 days.
Current Growth Street statistics suggest that they have matched a total of £692 million from almost 2,900 investors.
Growth Street P2P are regulated by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) with full permissions under FCA number 739318. They gained FCA permissions in March, 2018.
It’s important to note that the FCA is not the same as the FSCS (Financial Services Compensation Scheme), so capital is not protected as it would be in a bank.
Opening an account with Growth Street is fairly easy. Just the usual ID checks and anti-money laundering verification.
If they can verify you though one of the UK’s credit agencies, you will be approved quickly. If not, you may need to send them a copy of your passport or driving license, and a utility bill or bank statement.
It should still take no more than 24-48 hours to gain approval.
Residents of most countries can sign up with Growth Street, contact Growth Street for requirements for your specific location.
You will need a UK bank account, and possibly a UK telephone number.
If you don’t have a UK bank account, see my TransferWise Borderless Account review for more information on how it may be possible to get UK banking details even if you’re not a UK resident.
Deposits & Withdrawals – Growth Street Review
Deposits and Withdrawals are made by bank transfer from a UK bank. Debit card deposit is not available.
Deposits from your bank usually show up in your Growth Street account the same or next working day.
Withdrawals go to a registered and verified bank account, and typically take 1 – 3- business days.
Time to Become Invested
It can take a few days to get invested into loans with Growth Street. I’ve found it varies based on the amount of capital I am investing, as well as the loan book. As auto-invest is the only option, it’s just a case of waiting in line for your turn.
Sometimes capital is distributed almost immediately, however other times it has taken a couple of days. I’ve never known it to take more than 2 working days to become fully invested.
You can always see from the main screen dashboard how much is invested and how much is waiting to be invested (Money on market).
Who are we lending to?
Growth Street P2P is a true Peer to Peer Lender platform. Lenders are lending directly to borrowers, who are typically small to medium size British businesses.
Loan agreements are directly between the lender and the borrower. Growth Street just acts as a middle man, managing loans, payments and debt collection etc.
Loan Security – Growth Street Review
Most Growth Street loans are secured by business assets, invoice receivables and/or personal guarantees.
Unfortunately I don’t put much trust in invoice receivables as this is just passing the debt to another company who has the outstanding debt with the borrower.
Personal guarantees can be difficult to collect on (I prefer assets with low LTV’s). However as loans are typically only 30 days long, and there is a well capitalized provision fund. I don’t worry about it too much.
Growth street have had very few (low double-digit) defaults to date. The provision fund has always covered losses on any unpaid loans so far.
As Growth Street loans are typically only for 30 days, the loans don’t amortize as they are paid back in full at the end of the loan term.
Selling Loans and Withdrawing Capital
It is not possible to exit Growth Street loans early. However because loans are typically only for 30 days, you are really only ever 30 days from being able to withdraw all of your capital.
If you set reinvestment to “Do not reinvest” per the screenshot below, you should then be able to gain access to all your capital within 30 days or less.
Once your capital is back in the holding account, you can enter the amount you want to withdraw, and it should then hit your bank within 1 to 3 working days.
Diversification – Growth Street Review
As you can see by my loan list below, when I first started investing with Growth Street, I stuck to my “Prime Directive” and diversified my loans manually.
They do diversify funds for you, however when I originally put my money on the market, I wanted even more diversification. So I manually broke it up in to £100 chunks to ensure diversification between a lot of loans.
Since I first started investing and diversified my loans per the screenshot above, I realized that a key benefit is the Loan Loss Provision Fund.
The Growth Street provision fund is designed to diversify risk automatically for all investors. This is done by collecting contributions from all borrowers, and using those funds to cover missed payments across the whole portfolio; so every investor is exposed to all loans on the platform, rather than just the loans to which they are directly matched.
This means it is not necessary to diversify into many different loans, as a single loan cannot go against a single investor. Now I know how it works, I won’t bother to break up funds as I add them moving forward.
Growth Street say they have had only 8 defaults in the time they have been in business, and they were all covered by their provision fund which is also a good sign that their strategies to protect lenders are working.
IFISA – Tax Free Savings Account
See Growth Street for more information.
Using the Website – Growth Street Review
The website is very easy to use. When you first log in, you see a summary of your account.
There is only one “portfolio” or “option to lend”, so all you do once you’ve deposited funds is “Place a New Order to Lend”.
Enter how much you want to put on market, then hit the “Place Order” button. Simple as that!
It’s a good idea to set your reinvestment options to automatic so you don’t get cash drag when loans are repaid, because all of the principle and interest are paid back in 30 days.
If you don’t have reinvestment set to on, you will need to make sure you are monitoring the website most days to manually place the orders.
It is easy to see which loans you are invested in with the Growth Street website:
It is even possible to drill down and see individual loan agreements if you really want to.
However I don’t really see the point as there is not much information in them, and basically they all look the same.
Summary – Growth Street Review
Growth Street is a simple “set it and forget it” Peer to Peer lender. Their website is easy to use, and their loans are at the lower end of the risk scale.
The return for 30 day loans is very good. Once your funds are in the system, you can forget about them until you need to withdraw, in which case you’ll just need to cancel your reinvest options and wait just 30 days to retrieve your capital. I do check my lender account weekly, but it’s really not needed.
I like Growth Street as a way to have “reachable” capital in a reasonable amount of time, with a decent rate of return.
Thumbs Up Points for Growth Street
Safety – medium size company with a good track record. They make short term loans, some of which are secured against personal guarantees, debentures or business assets. The Provision Fund is also a big plus.
Auto-Invest –very easy to invest, and hands off investing once set up.
Great Rates – 5.3% return for having only a 30 day withdrawal window.
Website – very easy to use and understand.
Large Investments –although Growth Street’s loan book is not as big as some other lenders. They still manage to gobble up large investments fairly well.
Low minimum investment – if your portfolio is still small, it’s still easy to invest with Growth Street. With just a £10 minimum investment to start.
Quick, no cost exit –although there is no “instant exit”, we can be fairly sure that we can get all of our money out in 30 days if we need it in normal market conditions.
Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) Regulated..
Thumbs Down Points for Growth Street
Investment Time – my funds are usually invested in a couple of days. However I have had to wait a little longer for larger amounts of capital. I’ve also noticed a couple of days cash drag on reinvestment at times.
Smaller loan book than some of the bigger players, but still quite significant. Growth Street are growing fast though.
Risk Factor – 3/10 – Low
Is Growth Street Safe? I consider Growth Street to be at the lower end of the risk scale.
Taking in to consideration that many of its loans are secured, the well capitalized provision fund, and the short term nature of their loans. It’s hard not to Growth Street a perfect risk rating. However they are lending to businesses which are inherently more risky then lending to individuals.
I like Growth Street a lot and put a lot of trust in them. As you can see by the TrustPilot review above, so do many other people.
Who Can Invest with Growth Street
Residents of most European countries with access to a U.K. bank account (see review on TransferWise Borderless Account) can invest with Growth Street. Contact Growth Street for further information.
Similar Lenders to Growth Street
Growth Street Promo Video
Who Are the Best Peer to Peer Lenders In An Economic Downturn? Would You Like A Copy of the Spreadsheet I Use for Tracking P2P Lenders? Disclaimers: * My opinions, reviews, star ratings and risk ratings are based on my personal investing experience with the company being reviewed. These ratings are personal opinions and are subjective. You should do your own research before investing any capital and not base investments solely on the opinions published on this site. ** Some of the links on this website are affiliate referral links. When you click on these links, I can sometimes receive a commission, at absolutely no cost to you. This helps me to continue to offer new reviews and monthly portfolio updates here on my website. I don’t receive commissions from all lenders and it has no effect on my ongoing opinions on lenders. Income on my investments and capital preservation are my main motivations. Platforms reviewed on this website I am currently investing with, or I have invested with in the past. You can see with full transparency on my Lending Returns page which lenders I am invested with (or have previously been invested with) at any point in time. I am not paid a fee by any of the companies to write reviews, so the reviews are unbiased and purely based on my own personal experiences. Please read my full website Disclaimer before making investment decisions.
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* My opinions, reviews, star ratings and risk ratings are based on my personal investing experience with the company being reviewed. These ratings are personal opinions and are subjective. You should do your own research before investing any capital and not base investments solely on the opinions published on this site.
** Some of the links on this website are affiliate referral links. When you click on these links, I can sometimes receive a commission, at absolutely no cost to you. This helps me to continue to offer new reviews and monthly portfolio updates here on my website. I don’t receive commissions from all lenders and it has no effect on my ongoing opinions on lenders. Income on my investments and capital preservation are my main motivations.
Platforms reviewed on this website I am currently investing with, or I have invested with in the past. You can see with full transparency on my Lending Returns page which lenders I am invested with (or have previously been invested with) at any point in time. I am not paid a fee by any of the companies to write reviews, so the reviews are unbiased and purely based on my own personal experiences.
Please read my full website Disclaimer before making investment decisions.