Huddle Capital first popped onto my radar at the end of March with this post by Cooling_Dude on the P2P Independent Forum. They were offering a special promotional deal for the first 100 investors, which on first glance appeared too good to be true: 20% cashback on investments for the first 100 investors. However, when you think about it, say an average of £1,500 invested for the first 100 people comes out to £30,000 total spend in cashback, not that bad for a marketing spend to launch your new platform and iron out the problems.
I joined the waiting list and sent out an email to the P2Pblog cashback offers email list. Their website seemed to be taken down immediately after the initial burst of enthusiasm (late March/ early April) but by May they had it back up again.
First Impressions of Huddle Capital
Today (1st June) I had the email from Huddle saying they’ve now officially launched the platform are open to investments on a first come basis for the cashback offer (please confirm with Huddle before making an investment if you are eligible for the cashback). On first glance, it is identical to the Ablrate platform but with red colouring instead of blue:
A little worryingly, there does not appear to be a functioning HTTPS security certificate on the site, which I only noticed after making my deposit:
Clicking through the various pages, everything appears identical to Ablrate. Huddle is a subsidiary of Access Commercial Finance which also has several loans on the Ablrate platform, and Ablrate/Crowdstacker investors will be familiar with the first borrower.
Huddle has its technology platform from Ablrate but the FCA authorisation from elsewhere:
- Huddle Capital is an ‘Authorised Representative’ of Rebuildingsociety, which has permissions to “Operating an electronic system in relation to lending” (which is what many P2P platforms have) and to handle client money.
- Access Commercial Finance (of which Huddle Capital is a subsidiary) is Authorised in its own right by the FCA, but not for peer to peer lending. Its permissions are for credit broking and a couple of debt related permissions.
You can read more by searching for these in the FCA register:
I joined up a few minutes after receiving the launch email. I’ve already lent via rebuildingsociety, Ablrate and to Access Commercial Finance so I had a higher feeling of trust on this one than a typical peer to peer platform launch. The promise of 20% cashback also helped! The manual profile verification was done within a few minutes and I made the first deposit. Unlike Ablrate there was no card deposit option, only a bank transfer. One thing that was a little confusing was that it asks you to use your ‘user id’ as the reference: is this the ‘username’ or the ‘user code’ in the top right hand corner of the page? I just put ‘username – FIRST NAME SECOND NAME’ and it tracked ok.
There was just one loan listed so far. The LTV (loan to value) was 41% on a first charge. Looking at the valuation document it was based on desktop EBITDA valuation (based on a multiple of expected earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization).
The bank transfer took about 3 hours, you can imagine they were being really careful with the first deposits. After a few F5’s while waiting for the deposit, I think I was the 4th person to invest in Huddle!
Reward Terms and Conditions
The full terms of the 20% cashback offer are here. The key points I took from it were:
- The reward is only open to the first 100 eligible Investors who invest in an active Loan Offer on the Huddle Capital platform
- There is no minimum amount required to be invested, however the Reward shall be capped to £1,000.
- The Reward is also only available on the funds invested in the first loan on the platform.
- The Reward will be credited to the Investor’s user account on the Huddle Capital platform within 30 days of the first funds invested in a Loan Offer.
- The Reward represents a credit on the Investor’s, providing the investor an opportunity to earn interest on the credit amount, provided that money is invested. The investor can withdraw a cash equivalent of the Reward after a period of six months subsequent to the Reward being credited to their account.
Please note: this article was not written in collaboration with Huddle Capital and may contain errors. Please do your own research and contact Huddle Capital with questions directly before making any investment.