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Debitum Investments Analysis

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Last updated in June 2024.

What is Debitum Investments?

Debitum is a Latvian investment platform that focuses on loan originators issuing business loans. The platform allows retail investors to invest in pools of business loans from loan originators across Europe. Debitum has since its launch in September 2018 attracted more than 13,500 registered investors and facilitated €104m worth of business loans in primarily Latvia, the United Kingdom, and Poland. During the past 12 months, the platform has funded €22 million and surpass €1.8 million on average every month.

Key Takeaways

  • Debitum offers business loans pooled into asset-back securities starting at a minimum investment of €10.
  • The underlying business loans are backed by collateral and in some instances a 90-day buyback guarantee.
  • Statistics page displaying a 13.06% average return since launch with a 0% default rate on the 280+ ABS investments and 9,000+ business loans facilitated

How Debitum Investments Works

Debitum is an investment firm authorized by the Bank of Latvia, providing investors with asset-backed securities (ABS) that yield a fixed interest income starting from minimum investments of €10. These securities are supported by a revolving pool of business loans, which are regularly replenished as the loans are paid off or become overdue throughout the duration of the security. All investments on Debitum are backed by collateral in case of non-repayment, such as stock, guarantees, property, inventory, invoices, or promissory notes.[1]

Small and medium-sized businesses seek funding from loan originators, also known as brokers that sell these issued loans in a bundle on Debitum. Debitum’s partnered loan originators submit loans to the platform for review, Debitum’s team of financial analysts then evaluate, credit scores, and either approve or deny the loans. Most of the investments come with a Buyback Guarantee, requiring the loan originator to buy back the loan and cover any outstanding interest if the loan becomes late beyond an agreed-upon number of days (typically 90 days).

There are currently five loan originators actively offering business loans on Debitum. Evergreen Capital (Estonia), Flexidea (Latvia), Flexidea Polska (Poland), Sandbox Funding (Latvia), and Triple Dragon (United Kingdom).[2] All securities available on the platform are bullet loans, meaning investors receive monthly income payments and are paid the principal amount in full at the end of the term. Most of the securities are short-term with expected principal repayment in less than a year. Debitum does not provide an auto-invest feature or a secondary market for early exiting the investments.

Debitum Investments Returns & Fees

According to Debitum, the average return on all the investments since launch has been 13.06% with 0% defaults on any of the 76 ABS investments.[3] They do not provide any further insights to default rates or delays on the underlying 8,100 issued business loans. The ABS investments currently available on the marketplace offers an interest rate ranging from 9.5% to 14.35%. Additionally, the return can increase when penality fees incur if a loan surpasses the grace period once the asset is repaid. The most common grace period on Debitum is 7 days and investors do not receive penalty fees if the asset is bought back by the loan originator following the buyback guarantee.[4]

As a investment firm regulated company, your uninvested funds are protected up to €20 000 by the Investor compensation scheme in case of insolvency. Debitum does not charge investors any direct fees according to their price list, but makes money from charging the loan originators a 1%-3% fixed fee on the investments facilitated.[5]

Debitum Investments Management

Mārtiņš Liberts is the founder of Debitum. He has a professional background in business development and innovation, untill recently working as a board member at Debitum and is now the Chairman of one Flexidea that issues loans on the platform. Most recently co-owner Henrijs Jansons stepped down as CEO to introduce the co-owner Ēriks Reņģītis as the new CEO.  Henrijs resumes within reach as a board member at the loan originator Sandbox which he founded.

Among the managing team, you will find the Anatolijs Putņa as COO, Gvido Bajārs as CLO, and Toms Ābele as CMO with years of experience in the financial industry, together with six additional colleagues in their current team of 10 people.[6]

The Debitum platform was originally incorporated under SIA Prosperitu, but is today operated by SIA DN Operator, which officially was incorporated in April 2019 with the purpose of having Debitum owned by a regulated company. At that time Debitum changed its ownership structure to CEO Henrijs Jansons and businessman Ingus Salmiņš in July 2023 after being approved by the Bank of Latvia extending the ownership to now also include the new CEO, Ēriks Reņģītis.[7]

Special Considerations

Although you have access to information regarding the loan originators themselves and from there can get a sense of the type of companies they issue loans to, you are unable to see which specific companies you are funding through the ABS investment.

In March 2023, Debitum published an annual report for 2022 audited by Grant Thornton and most recently the 2023 annual report in English. The company is investing heavily in the platform and the loss for Debitum in 2023 was at €358,634, up from €110,487 in 2022.[8]

Debitum launched a token called DEB back in 2018 as an integrated part of the platform with a reward-based setup on the platform utilizing the tokens, that is no longer a key part of the platform, but it gained a lot of traction as a pioneering company in the community at the height of the crypto craze.[9]

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