- More than 20.000 investors on the platform
- Third largest platform in Europe
- Proven track record – more than €1 billion loans issued
This Twino review is updated regularly to make sure it’s current.
They offer great investment opportunities since 2009.
Let’s look into it 🙂
Table of contents
What is Twino?
Twino is a well established P2P lending platform and it’s the third-largest investment market place in Europe.
It was founded in 2009 in Latvia and expanded its operations in multiple countries. Including Latvia, Twino is currently connecting investors with borrowers through its operations and offices in 10 countries.
Twino has originated a cumulative of more than one billion euros in unsecured loans since 2009.
The number of investors on the platform is increasing, and in February 2020, there were more than 20,000 investors on the platform. That’s impressive! 😀
They have a great track record and shown very positive development.
It offers loan services (that you can invest in) in Poland and the Czech Republic since 2011, and in Russia, they launched in 2013. The operations in Georgia and Mexico were initiated in 2014, and in Denmark, the services were set up in 2015, while Twino was simultaneously launched in Spain and Kazakhstan in 2016.
Recently in early 2020, they successfully launched their consumer lending operations in Vietnam with the brand VAMO. They are doing it in partnership with VIA SMS Group (They are the company behind the P2P platform ViaInvest). They want to find common ground, share know-how and enter the Asia-Pacific region.
Moreover, the success of the Twino platform has been often mentioned in the media in Europe. Also, Twino has received numerous rewards.
Notice that the website is not .com but twino.eu
What kind of return can I expect?
The average interest rate is 10,72% and it’s a satisfactory return similar to other European P2P lending platforms.
You can expect to make above +10% in return depending on the loan type.
Twino stated that since its inception in 2009, it has paid more than 10,000,000 euros in interest to the investors 😎
Who can invest?
You must be 18 years old and from Europe to join the platform.
This includes Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway.
Moreover, you can invest funds through a company account.
The sign-up process is easy
Becoming a Twino investor is quite a straightforward process, and you can choose to register as an individual or as a company.
During the registration as an individual account, you just need to fill the form with the relevant information such as name, address, country and agree to the stated terms and conditions.
After you have successfully registered, the next step is to fund your account.
Your first transaction must be from your personal bank account (SEPA transfer). Then you have validated this and you can also use other services such as PaySera and TransferWise.
Personally, I choose to transfer money in EUR and I always use Transferwise to reduce any fees.
Keep in mind that you can fund your account in either euro (EUR) or British pounds (GBP). This means that you should pay attention to the exchange rate if your national currency is not one of these two.
The currency of your initial deposit will be set as the currency for your account and this will be the currency for your activities. Also remember that although you can transfer money to your account in different currencies, all currencies other than GBP will be converted to euro and you will execute your operations in euro.
The currencies are converted following the exchange rate of Swedbank from Latvia.
The platform and its buyback guarantee… 🙂
The investment opportunities
You can invest in loans with a maturity period of one month and upward.
Approximately 90% of the investment opportunities are short-term 1-3 months.
The minimum investment is only 10 euros.
Twino performs an evaluation of loan demand through the platform. Consequently, different types of loans are available for investing at the platform, and they are primarily categorized as follows:
- Unsecured consumer loans – are short-term loans paid through regular payments that are not guaranteed by the borrower, or more precisely, there is no collateral given by the borrower.
- Business loans – are also paid through regular installments, but these loans are intended for small and medium enterprises. The borrower offers a certain guarantee which has the role of extra protection for the investors.
- Invoice financing – is a type of loan which enables businesses to borrow money against their invoices. The business takes money based on the amount to be paid by their clients, and these loans come with a personal guarantee.
The loans can be listed in different currencies because Twino originates loans from multiple countries, which means that the exchange rate should be taken into account. The good thing though, is that the platform will automatically convert the loan funds into your account currency (GBP or EUR).
Moreover, there is a secondary market for Twino loans, meaning that you can sell and buy loans at any time with investors. The downside to having a secondary market is that there is no clearly defined section for this market and loans labeled as default cannot be sold in this market.
There are no fees using the platform at all.
Auto invest option and portfolio builder
Twino has this option available for its investors and it’s something I personally always use. It makes it much easier to handle.
Using the auto-invest option you can reinvest your profit hassle-free by defining the amount of money invested in a loan, the desired interest rate as well as other investment preferences for selection of the adequate loans.
Of course, any time you want, you can invest manually by stopping or canceling the auto investment option.
I particularly like the portfolio builder option, which enables you to invest in multiple loans at once. The good thing is that the process is quite simple, you need to define your selection criteria, and the system will display all loans satisfying the specified criteria.
What are the loan statuses on Twino?
Another aspect I like about the Twino platform is that it gives specific statuses to loans that increase transparency and is easing the investment decision.
The loan can take any of the five types of status: current, extended, delayed, defaulted and recovered.
Loans with “current” status are loans for which the borrower is meeting its payment obligation on time or the repayment period is yet to come. The “extended” loan status can be assigned to loans with buyback guarantee when the borrower asks for additional repayment period, but he/she will pay the interest as defined with the schedule. The status “delayed” is used for loans when the borrower is late with the repayment.
Loans with buyback guarantee will take this “delayed” status when the borrowers fail to pay the monthly payment.
While loans with payment guarantee and ratings A, B and C will have the status for a late repayment from 1 to 30 days and from 1 to 45 days respectively. Status “defaulted” is not applicable to loans with buyback guarantee.
Nevertheless, a late repayment of more than 30 days for loans with payment guarantee and more than 45 days for loans A, B and C rating loans, will be marked with the status defaulted. “Recovered” status is assigned to loans with rating A, B or C when the portfolio is transferred (sold) specialized companies.
Is it safe? – The buyback guarantee
Twino offers two types of protection for its investors, the buyback guarantee and the payment guarantee.
I always invest in P2P lending with 100% buyback guarantees to have this extra layer of protection.
Investing in loans with buyback guarantee would mean that the investor will be compensated with the initial investment in the loans as well as the interest along with any accrued interest in circumstances when the borrower fails to repay for more than 60 days.
I find the second type of protection scheme offered by the platform pretty interesting because, with the payment guarantee, you will receive the principal amount and the interest following the original repayment schedule. Hence, the repayment process will continue even if the borrower is late with the payments, and this guarantee is valid until the loan maturity.
So, this would mean that we, as investors, would receive our initial investment plus any agreed interest from loans with this type of guarantee.
The platform has made it rather easy for investors to identify the type of protection available on different loans, by assigning the appropriate icon to each loan.
It’s especially important that you are aware of loans that are not guaranteed either by the buyback nor the payment guarantee and these are loans with a rating A, B or C.
Let me share more about the loan rating… 🙂
What are loan ratings and why they matter?
The battle for attracting new investors and borrowers while keeping the risk levels at a satisfactory level has imposed the need for P2P platforms to make a more in-depth analysis of their borrowers.
One such analysis performed by the Twino is their rating system.
I like this system because loans available on the platform have their rating, which is based on the internal evaluation of the risks associated with the loan.
Consequently, by knowing the rating scale, you would immediately know the level of risk which is assigned by the platform, and you can find out if you get an interest rate that is relevant for the degree of risk.
Furthermore, loans can be assigned with either A, B or C rating, where loans with A rating have the lowest risk, whereas loans with C rating represent a high-risk investment.
What is Twino Alternative Lending Index?
The Alternative Lending Index (also called ALI) is something that really caught my eye when it comes to the strategic expansion of Twino.
Namely, the ALI is created together with KPMG Baltics as a way to analyze the lending environment in different countries.
The purpose of these analyses is to rank the countries in accordance with the existing credit gap.
Countries with a higher credit gap point toward the possibility that the need for credit can be covered through alternative financing sources such as the P2P.
Twino is not just rushing to expand its operations. Instead, the expansion is based in markets where the demand for P2P loans definitely exists and markets in which investors will have enough investment opportunities.
Who is behind the Twino platform?
Twino has more than +400 employees who are ensuring that the operations are flawless. It really shows the scale of operations. They had a net profit of EUR 9 million in 2018.
Here is the main team at a summer event:
The people holding the managing positions as well as the owner of Twino platform are:
- Armands Broks – the founder and owner of Twino, and there is rather limited information on his LinkedIn profile. According to the profile he holds an MBA from the Stockholm School of Economics in Riga with ten years of experience as an entrepreneur.
- Anastasija Oļeiņika – the current CEO of Twino, has a vast experience working on different positions within Twino as well as in other companies. Namely, prior to becoming a CEO, Anastasija held the position of CFO and COO in Twino. Also, she worked as a Head of group financial planning and analysis. Before joining the Twino group in 2017, she worked as an Associate in Corporate Finance and as a finance manager at companies from the financial industry. As far as her education goes, Anastasija finished her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration at Stockholm School of Economics in Riga in 2012, and she is a Chartered Financial Analyst since 2014. She also has multiple certificates and licenses from the Board Member Education, IFRS, and CFA Institute.
- Roberts Lasovskis – is P2P Investment Platform Lead at Twino. He is with Twino for approximately four years during which he worked on different positions such as investment advisory and investment platform lead before being promoted to the current position. Before joining Twino, he worked as a client service advisor at a company specialized in insurance and financial services. He also worked as a financial analysis in a Swiss online bank. Roberts holds a Bachelor’s degree from the BA School of Business and Finance since 2015.
- Nauris Bloks – holds the position of IT Lead and has been working with Twino since 2016. During his time in Twino Nauris worked on different positions where he started as an IT support manager. He was with his previous employer for seven years where his last position was Acting Head of Information System Support Department. Considering his education, according to his profile he has a Bachelor’s Degree in Electronic Business from the University of Latvia and as stated an unfinished degree in Mechatronics, Robotics and Automation Engineering from Rigas Tehniska Universitate. He holds licenses and certificates from the Baltic Institute of Corporate Finance, IIBA, Data State Inspectorate of Latvia, and he has finished multiple courses.
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