With the latest Mintos Ratings update, we are introducing rating changes for 7 lending companies on Mintos and sharing status overviews for some specific cases on the marketplace. We are also removing the “Ratings Watch” status notification from the loan originators list, and it won’t be used anymore. Where applicable, this status notification will be substituted with a status “Suspended”.
Mintos Risk team assesses loan originators based on their operations, management, financials, risk appetite, portfolio performance and regulatory environment; activities in the country or countries of operation, and on the Mintos marketplace. The Mintos Ratings report is a guide we offer for Mintos investors, to help navigate through the diverse investment opportunities on the Mintos marketplace while evaluating risks.
If you want to know more about Mintos Ratings, you can read more here.
The COVID-19 pandemic declared by the World Health Organization on 11 March 2020 has affected global markets and the dynamics of financial services. Many countries in which lending companies on Mintos do business have introduced moratoriums that authorize borrowers to legally suspend, postpone, or reduce their payments (principal, interest, or both) for a limited period of time. This action affects the whole repayment schedule and may lead to increased payments once the moratorium period or loan extension ends. Currently, moratorium-enabled repayment delays and lowered economic power of borrowers are affecting alternative lenders. This Mintos Ratings changes update is strongly influenced by these developments.
Companies affected by the June 2020 Mintos Ratings update are Cream Finance, Dziesiątka Finanse, ESTO, ID Finance Mexico, and Finko Group’s entities Dinero, Kiva, and UkrPozyka. Except for ESTO, whose rating will be upgraded, the current ratings for all the remaining companies will be downgraded. The decision about the rating change for Dziesiątka Finanse was made prior to the company’s suspension on the marketplace.
We will also give an overview of the current rating status of the rest of the Finko Group entities: Lendo, Metrokredit, and Sebo, and we will take a look at the current position of ID Finance Spain.
The changes to the Mintos Ratings will not be applied to the currently suspended companies: Akulaku, ExpressCredit Zambia, Capital Service, Cashwagon Philippines, Cashwagon Indonesia and Cashwagon Vietnam. Instead, these companies will be marked with a “Suspended” status notification, until their individual status on Mintos changes. Dziesiątka Finanse will also be added to the list of companies with the status “Suspended”.
The risk ratings for the loan originators mentioned in this update will be changed on Thursday, 25 June 2020.
If the following Mintos Ratings changes affect your investment preferences, please remember to update your Auto Invest strategies accordingly before the changes take place.
Consumer finance services provider Cream Finance was founded in 2012 in Latvia and the company joined the Mintos marketplace in 2015. Offering short-term loans from six countries on Mintos (Latvia, Poland, Czech Republic, Georgia, Denmark, and Spain), Cream Finance Holding LTD provides a group guarantee that ensures the execution of the buyback obligations for investors.
What has changed?
Cream Finance’s rating has been downgraded from B to B-.
The downgrade of the Cream Finance Group’s rating primarily reflects the COVID-19 pandemic-related pressures on the company’s business and financial profile. Cream Finance’s gross margin has decreased, influenced by the government-initiated customer relief measures (e.g. payment holidays and interest rate caps). The company’s balance sheet also shows a higher debt to equity ratio than for the company’s industry peers. Given its focus on sub-prime or near-subprime unsecured borrowers, we also expect distress in the borrower credit profiles that might lead to higher loan impairment charges, negatively affecting operating profitability. However, Cream Finance has adopted a number of corrective measures to limit the business impact of the coronavirus challenges, including tightening of the underwriting standards (aimed at curbing loan impairments). Nevertheless, Cream Finance’s experienced management and above the class internal scoring system remain a strong supporting factor that can contribute to the stabilization of the business performance in the upcoming period.
Dziesiątka Finanse is one of the oldest companies in Poland that operates in the personal (instalment) loan industry. Established in 2001, the company joined Mintos in June 2019.
What has changed?
Dziesiątka Finanse’s rating has been downgraded from B- to C+.
Dziesiątka Finanse’s earnings are affected by the current economic conditions. Collection of the borrowers’ funds has been impacted, which has reduced the company’s liquidity position and ability to transfer payments to Mintos investors. In addition, although limited profitability has led to increased leverage of Dziesiątka Finanse, the company has sustained an adequate capitalisation on the market level.
Established in 2017 in Estonia, ESTO provides a fully automated and tech-driven point of sale purchase financing and payments solution for its network of merchant partnerships in Estonia. ESTO has built the second largest e-commerce financing network in Estonia, and is about to expand to new markets. With Apple brand resellers, electronics and furniture sector coverage, ESTO has become top financier for purchases.
What has changed?
ESTO’s rating has been upgraded from B- to B.
ESTO’s rating is being upgraded based on the company’s sustainable financial performance and stable loan portfolio quality. ESTO has reached profitability in the second quarter of 2019 and ever since, the company is operating with positive net results. In the first quarter of 2020, ESTO’s net loan portfolio reached €13.5 million, while portfolio quality has remained stable throughout their operations, despite the company’s rapid growth and changing economic environment.
ID Finance Mexico
ID Finance Mexico was launched in 2017, and has been present on Mintos since April 2019. The company operates under the brand “Moneyman”, the flagship product of ID Finance. In Mexico, Moneyman provides people with access to short-term loans for daily or unexpected expenses.
What has changed?
ID Finance Mexico’s rating has been downgraded from B- to C+.
ID Finance Mexico’s rating on Mintos is being downgraded due to low capitalization and high reliance on the Group funding. As the company is still in the stage of growth, it hasn’t reached stable profitability yet. There is a deterioration in the current portfolio quality, with a significant number of loans beyond the repayment schedule.
Additional: about ID Finance Spain
As the country had implicit moratorium for borrowers in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, ID Finance Spain’s borrowers were allowed credit holidays under certain criteria. Because of the moratorium, management decided to freeze the loan statuses for the previously issued loans, affecting the amounts of collected borrowers’ repayments. As a result of the freeze, there is uncertainty about the future portfolio performance of ID Finance Spain. However, the company has decreased its monthly issuance levels while adjusting the scoring to target better-quality customers. Potentially, such actions can prevent a long-term decrease in portfolio performance. Because of these measures along with the good profitability and capitalization levels of ID Finance Spain, there will be no changes in the company’s rating on the Mintos marketplace.
Companies from the Finko Group
As of the beginning of June, Finko Group has settled all its pending payments except for Varks, a lending company from the Group that operated in Armenia and that was the Group’s main cash-generating unit. As we already shared, Finko Group will not be able to cover the outstanding portfolio of Varks on Mintos in a single payment. The group guarantee is not being exercised because of this, as the possible legal actions to enforce the company’s group guarantee could jeopardize the expected recovery amounts, both for Varks and for other companies from the Finko Group. Consequently, while there is a strong parent-subsidiary relationship, we’re reviewing companies from the Finko Group on a standalone basis, in order to provide more clarity about the strength and the role of each Group entity.
The Ukrainian financial company Dinero is part of the Finko Group. Dinero was established in October 2017 as a microfinance organization specializing in short-term unsecured loans. In 2019, according to finance.ua, the company was the Ukrainian MFI market leader in online sales. Dinero is a member of the Ukrainian Finance Company’s Association (VAFK).
What has changed?
Dinero’s rating has been downgraded from B- to C+.
Dinero is being downgraded because of the negative financial results and deterioration of the portfolio quality caused by the COVID-19 pandemic crisis in the country. The company’s financial results are affected by extra provisions and FX losses. As Ukraine has an imposed moratorium for borrowers, Dinero is experiencing a delay in borrower repayments, which has also been reflected in its prudent provision calculations. The rating is still supported by the company’s strong capital position due to shareholder’s subordinated loans.
Kiva is a new lending company operating in Russia, with an aim to provide better service to the underbanked parts of the Russian population with its online services. The company is part of the Finko Group and is regulated by the Central Bank of the Russian Federation. Kiva has been present on Mintos since February 2020.
What has changed?
Kiva’s rating has been downgraded from C+ to C.
Kiva is one of the youngest lending companies on Mintos. Its rating is now being downgraded due to negative financial results and portfolio quality deterioration. The negative developments come as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic effects, with financial results being affected by foreign exchange losses, and extra provisions reflecting the company’s prudent provision policy. Due to the moratorium for borrowers in Russia, Kiva is experiencing a delay in borrower repayments.
UkrPozyka is an innovative consumer online lending company established in Ukraine in 2019. The company is a part of the Finko Group and it was licensed by the local regulatory body, Non-Bank Financial Institutions Regulatory Authority.
What has changed?
UkrPozyka’s rating has been downgraded from B- to C.
The company is experiencing the same scenario as Dinero. UkrPozyka is being downgraded because of the negative financial results and deterioration of the portfolio quality caused by the COVID-19 pandemic crisis in the country. The company’s financial results are affected by extra provisions and FX losses. As Ukraine has imposed a moratorium for borrowers, UkrPozyka is experiencing a delay in borrower repayments, which is also impacting the company’s liquidity position.
Sebo, Lendo and Metrokredit from the Finko Group remain without changes
Lendo, Finko Group’s lender from Georgia, is in a wind-down and its rating has been decreased to C+ in March 2019. At the time of the last downgrade, the company was adversely affected by changes in the regulation of the lending industry in Georgia, just like the rest of the players in the lending industry in that country. The company is not issuing new loans anymore, but actively servicing the existing ones.
Hence, the wind-down phase rating for Lendo remains the same, at C+.
Metrokredit, a lending company established in Russia in 2017, was active on Mintos from 2018 until November 2019. At that time, the Central Bank of the Russian Federation issued a statement about Metrokredit being excluded from the State Register of the Microfinance Organizations of the Russian Federation. Ever since, the company is suspended from issuing new loans, while servicing the existing ones.
The company’s rating remains at C.
Sebo, an alternative lending company from the Republic of Moldova, is specialized in long-term unsecured loans, focusing primarily on delivering quick financial help for its clients. Sebo was established in January 2017, and joined Mintos in January 2018.
As there are no significant changes that could affect the rating of Sebo on Mintos, this company from the Finko Group keeps its current rating of B-.
Sebo, as other entities in the country, has experienced additional pressure on its portfolio quality due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, actions of the management have been successful in terms of limiting the impact on the business. In addition, the company has been able to remain profitable and keep the industry’s average capitalization profile.
Companies with the official status “Suspended”
As mentioned in the introduction, we are removing the status notification “Ratings Watch” from the loan originators list, and changing it with “Suspended” for eligible companies.
With the current Mintos Ratings update changes, the following suspended entities will be also marked as “Suspended” on Mintos:
As long as these lending companies are suspended from the Primary and the Secondary Markets, their Mintos Ratings won’t be changed. The companies are undergoing debt restructuring and their loans are not available for investment or sale whatsoever, hence the rating does not have a practical value.
If and when a suspended loan originator becomes active on the Primary or Secondary Market, its rating will be re-evaluated and updated.
Please keep in mind that existing Auto Invest strategies do not automatically adjust after the risk rating upgrades. If you want to start or stop investing in loans from the lending companies in this Mintos Ratings report, you need to adjust your Auto Invest settings manually.