The first interview that I made for the blog is with Alberts Cevers, CEO and Co-Founder at Kuetzal.
My desire for the interview is (1) to find out more about the reliability of Kuetzal and (2) to help you decide if you should invest with them or not.
First, I want to tell you that I have no association with Kuetzal or any member of their staff. The interview is not made for any financial reasons, but purely to get clarifications.
As you may know, I have invested 500 EUR in Kuetzal in February and today I just received the interest for the second month. So far it was paid on time.
Let’s dive in:
Q1: Can you tell me your story in short? (to Alberts Cevers)
I started my career journey when I was studying at university in Barcelona. In summer, between fall and spring semesters, I started to work in a financial company which was offering a variety of services: short-term loans, property-backed loans, vehicle-backed loans. At that time I clearly understood that I am passionate about financial business and I see myself there in the future.
After I completed my studies I worked there for one more year, at that time also participated in P2P platform start-up.
At that moment crypto-currency market was on one of its peaks and I decided to try myself in short-term crypto-trading. In less than a month I have earned solid money and decided to move back to my motherland- Riga.
After some time I and our team initiated Kuetzal start-up. I found this market very interesting and motivating, and I am happy to be here now.
Q2: What is the story behind how Kuetzal started and why?
Kuetzal’s main business model is to connect investors and promising projects. Nowadays investors from developed European countries have a deficit of high-yielding investment opportunities in their local markets. At the time of Kuetzal launch, we already knew several companies that wanted to develop their business through crowdinvesting, and we understood that it’s perfect time to do it: the market is developing very actively, and everyday investors prefer to diversify their portfolio with crowdinvesting deals.
Q3: How many employees do you have?
We have our CEO Alberts Cevers, project manager Romans Antonovs and head of marketing Nikita Pavlovskis. Also, we are working with a marketing company, which prepares banners and many other things, also they made Kuetzal design. We are outsourcing all the IT part which is a massive part of our business. We prefer to keep our team rather small and mobile, but we understand that along with platform growth the team will be growing as well.
Q4: What is the average account value for the active investors?
There are more than 1000 investors right now and every day more and more people are registering and investing in Kuetzal. More than 85% of them are active.
The average account value is near 940€
Q5: Why choose Kuetzal platform over competition?
Kuetzal has two main advantages over main competitors: Kuetzal Care (our unique solution that allows earning immediately) and Buy-back for majority of deals. Those make several deals fully secured. Along with high interest rates that we currently offer (17,9% in average) we believe Kuetzal is a very attractive opportunity for both private and institutional investors.
Q6: Based on the platform information your first loan offered and funded was Velox Latvija. Can you tell us when is was first listed and when was fully funded and when it reaches maturity?
Velox first offer was listed on the platform on 20.12.2018, it reached the goal of 90.000€ on 18.02.2019 and last investment to ensure capacity of 110.000€ was done on 22.02.2019.
Q7: I observed the loans do not have an end date. How this process works?
When the projects are being listed on the platform they don’t have the end date, if we see the the funding goes rather slow, we are setting a deadline for this concrete project. At that time fixed payments as well as the project overall funding to goal amount are guaranteed with Kuetzal Care in every project listed now.
Q8: Regarding Kuetzal Care can you go into details regarding loans it was applied on and in what amount? And if a loan does not have an end term how and when in comes into practices?
As I mentioned before, the deadline for the project is set up manually by our team when we see funding goes rather slow. At today’s date Kuetzal Care was applied in only one project: Spinedango. The project had a goal of 60.000€ and 100.000€ maximum. Investors on Kuetzal have invested 35.560€, and 40.940€ were funded through Kuetzal Care.
Q9: Please specify how buy-back guarantee works?
Investment buy-back is provided by the platform, not by the project owners.
There are two main scenarios that Kuetzal Buy-Back covers:
1) Early exit opportunity. 10% penalty is taken in case you are willing to cancel your investment before the end of term. (Only for the projects that are supported with buy-back)
2) In the worst case scenario, if project announces default, Kuetzal guarantees to cover 100% of investment during next 2 months after default is announced (for those projects that are supported with buy-back). This time will be used to initiate the legal process. 2 months is the maximum term and we expect to return funds in 1-2 weeks. In this case there are no fees for investors, Kuetzal is securing 100% of investment.
Q10: What would happen if Kuetzal goes on bankrupt?
Firstly, it is important to remind that it is really unlikely, as Kuetzal does not perform any of the projects listed. We are just the mediators between investors and the companies. In addition, lots of deals are secured with collateral and personal & other guarantees. In case Kuetzal announces bankruptcy, company will collect all the cash and convert all the assets into cash. Furthermore it will be distributed among investors in relevant proportion.
Q11: What is your borrower selection process?
First of all we are checking history of this borrower, if he had problems with other companies or government. Then we need know his future plans, if he is ambitious and knows his job and market. After this we are analyzing company’s statements and market in general. This is the stage when most of the companies stop as our policy is rather strict since we want to provide only safe and secured deals. Final step is agreement establishment and confirmation of both parties.
Q12: What are the future plans for Kuetzal?
We are actively increasing both investors pool and list of projects. Our main goal is to provide only safe deals and keep the default percentage at zero. 2019 is very important year in perspective of company development, during this year we want to build the strong and safe reputation, along with the actively increasing investors count we would need to be able to supply them with the best investment opportunities. This year we have a goal to fund 9M€ of deals and we are working hard to meet these ambitions.
Q13: Will you be able to provide enough loans to investors as the platform grows?
Yes, we believe we will be able to feed the market even during high demand. We have powerful contacts in real-estate and manufacturing market in Baltic countries, and we are always working and searching for new perspective projects and partners.
Q14: Can you share some information about the company’s financials?
As you probably recognized, Kuetzal was found in 2018 and we began our activities in November 2018. Starting from year 2020 we are planning to share the annual statements with the community.
If you need clarifications regarding any question please comment below and I will send them over to them.
In order to sign up to Kuezal you can do it with my referral link which gives you 0.5% bonus of your investments made in the first 180 days.
If you need any guidance in P2P investing you can send me an email at email@example.com, till then read my last financial report here.