Loan types available
Website and investment product features
What is Moncera? How does it work?
Moncera is a P2P investment site that was established in 2020 to fund the loans of international lending group Placet Group (corporate website here). Moncera is located in Tallin, Estonia, and is regulated by the Estonia Financial Intelligence Unit. Moncera was founded by two former members of the Placet Group management team. You can read our interview with the CEO of Moncera, Dmitri Pavlov here.
Previously, Placet Group had used Mintos as a P2P funding source. Placet Group loans can still be found at Mintos, but we expect availability there to end fairly soon. The interest rates offered for Placet Group loans at Mintos are now lower than can be found at Moncera.
Moncera is very simple to use. It has functionality that allows investors to either select individual loans on the primary market, or use an auto-invest tool. At the moment there is no secondary market. However, one of the key features being promoted by Moncera is its ‘early exit’ mechanism. If an investor needs early access to its money, they facilitate the repurchase of their investments by Placet Group. The cost to the investor is 0.5% of the loans repurchased. While some other P2P sites got into trouble recently by offering these types of promises/faciilities, we think the one offered by Moncera is different. That’s because it is backed by Placet Group, rather than being unfunded and relying on new investors to cash out leaving investors.
The auto-invest function has all the usual options found on other sites. This includes loan term, interest rate, and loan originator. Moncera provides investors a weekly email that provides simple information about interest earned, principal received from investors, investments made, and cash held on their behalf. The site has good reporting functionality, allowing investors to see all activity on their account within a chosen time period, and it can generate statements.
Interest rates are currently around 11-12%. The loans are personal loans ranging from 3 months to 6 years. It is possible to create a portfolio that is fairly short term by setting a maximum maturity in the auto-invest settings. The loans are fully amortising loans, where the customer pays down the loan over the duration of the loan, where principal and interest payments are made each month. All loans have a 30 day buyback guarantee. Loans are available from Placet Group subsidiaries in Lithuania and Estonia.
Account opening procedures are very simple and professional. In our tests, deposits have been credited within hours of sending funds. We recently interviewed the co-founder and CEO of Moncera. You can read the interview here.
All loans offered on Moncera currently come from a single lending group – Placet Group. The Moncera site was as a way for Placet Group to raise funding to help them grow their loan portfolio, and to reduce their reliance on Mintos.
As all loans have a buyback guarantee, we think the main investment risk is whether Placet Group goes out of business. How likely is that? We’ve been monitoring Placet Group performance for several years and in our view, they have one of the best operating records of any loan originator that P2P investors can currently purchase loans from. In our Mintos lender ratings, their current score is 74/100, which is one of the highest.
Why does Placet Group have such a high score? Firstly their track record. The business has been consistently profitable, with profits of €3-€3.5m in the last few years. Even during the peak of the COVID crisis, in Q2 2020, Placet Group remained profitable.
Another reason why Placet Group scores well in our ratings is its conservative balance sheet structure. It has shareholder equity of €20 million, enough to fund more than half of the amount of loans outstanding (€39 million). This means that Placet Group has less funding pressure than most other loan originators, and gives it a significant buffer to absorb any future losses that may happen in the future.
To view the latest Placet Group financial reports and information, visit Moncera where the reports can be found on their home page.
We think that Moncera is one of the better options available for European P2P investors currently. The site is best for European P2P investors who are looking to diversify their investments across more than 1 platform.
We think the loan originator, Placet Group has a good track record and provides high quality reports and presentations. Even so, there is a limit to how much exposure an investor should have to any single loan originator. That’s why we think the best use for Moncera is to be included within a portfolio of different P2P sites, so that exposure to any one lending group (no matter how strong) is limited.
Moncera is a very simple site to use. It is very quick and easy to invest funds, and requires minimal maintenance / monitoring after this. Investors should use the auto-invest function. We suggest setting minimum returns to 10 or 11%, and selecting the loans from all countries available (currently just two).
Once the auto-invest is done, there is very little that investors will ever need to do, other than to check that their portfolio is remaining fully invested. We suspect that rates may fall in the future, so it may make sense for investors to purchase longer dates loans (say 24 to 36 month maturities) to lock in these interest rates.
A final thing that appeals to us about Moncera is that they have an attractive branch office in Tallin, Estonia, that is available for investors to visit. While we do not expect many people to do this, we think this builds trust and confidence, which is needed right now.
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