Peer-to-peer lending marketplace Mintos - winning product of Rietumu Fintech Challenge 2015

Just two years after the Rietumu Fintech Challenge competition, Mintos has become one of the most successful startups in Latvia by reaching trade volume around 20 million euros in March 2017. Mintos CEO and Co-Founder Mārtiņš Šulte tells his story about the peer-to-peer marketplace for investors and various non-bank lenders he has created.

What is peer-to-peer marketplace? How does it work?
Marketplace functions similarly to the way Amazon does. While Amazon connects merchants selling goods to consumers, Mintos connects loan originators selling loans to investors. Thus, we offer investors an asset class that previously was not widely available — the opportunity to finance loans originated by non-bank lenders, who have traditionally funded loans using their own balance sheet. 

Investors on the Mintos marketplace can invest in agricultural loans, invoice financing, mortgage loans, secured car loans, small business loans and unsecured loans. The loans listed are originated by 26 loan originators based in Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Georgia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania and Spain.

What are current business results of the company?
Mintos has seen tremendous growth. The cumulative amount of loans financed via the Mintos marketplace has expanded from 5 million euros in August 2015 to 160 million euros today. Consequently, our product has outperformed industry growth indicators and projections by industry experts. On a month-to-month basis, traded volumes have grown sharply, reaching around 20 million euros in March 2017.

Within 24 months Mintos has grown from a newly established and unknown platform in the Baltics to one well recognized among investors, loan originators and industry opinion leaders in Europe. We have won the AltFi People’s Choice Award 2016, Rietumu FinTech Challenge 2015, and have been selected as a runner up for The One to Watch Award 2015, European Alternative Finance Platform of the Year 2016 and Aggregator of the Year 2016 by AltFi.

What do you remember as the biggest success from participation in Rietumu Fintech Challenge 2015?
Participation and victory in the Rietumu FinTech challenge gave us more credibility and confidence that we are working in the right direction. Also the advice of mentors was useful and encouraged us to set up more ambitious development plans. 

Now our ambition is to become the leading tech-driven peer-to-peer lending marketplace in Europe, aiming to disrupt traditional financial services to ultimately facilitate free movement of capital across borders. This will enable integrated, open, competitive and efficient financial markets and services that work for the benefit of investors and borrowers. The fact that already 26 loan originators have joined the Mintos marketplace instead of building their own platforms is a strong sign of the viability and future prospects of our business concept.

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