Crowdpear Review 2024: Up to 13%+ at PeerBerry Spin-Off?

Crowdpear is a PeerBerry spin-off, which started its lending operations at the beginning of 2023. On the platform, investors have access to senior secured real estate loans with interest rates of up to 13%.

As a regulated P2P platform, Crowdpear offers its investors, in contrast to PeerBerry, a much safer legal and regulatory investment framework. 

This Crowdpear review will reveal if the platform is worth your time and money. All the information covered in this analysis are based on my own research about the platform. Please make sure to do your own due diligence before investing on this or any other platform. More information can be found in the Disclaimer.

Further analyses of other platforms can be found on my P2P Platform Review page.

Last Update: 05 February 2024

Crowdpear Overview

Before we get started, here is a quick summary with the most important information about Crowdpear.

Founded / Started:August 2021 / January 2023
Legal Name:UAB Crowdpear (LINK)
Headquarter:Vilnius, Lithuania
Regulated:Yes (Central Bank of Lithuania)
CEO:Vytautas Olšauskas (August 2021)
Assets Under Management:€4+ M (January 2024)
Number of Investors:6.000+
Expected Return:10,62%
Primary Loan Type:Real Estate Loans
Collateral:Mortgage
Bonus:1% Cashback for 90 Days

About Crowdpear

crowdpear-logo

Crowdpear is a Lithuanian-based crowdfunding platform where investors can invest in mortgage-backed real estate loans from Lithuania and earn a return of up to 13%.

The platform has been regulated and supervised by the Central Bank of Lithuania since its inception. In July 2023, the platform also obtained the ECSP licence, which means Crowdpear is also regulated in accordance with the new EU Crowdfunding Regulation.

In combination with the legally prescribed separation of investor and company funds, the safety on Crowdpear is much higher than on comparable P2P alternatives.

The Origin Story

Crowdpear is a spin-off from PeerBerry. This is proven by the fact that two of the three shareholders are also shareholders at PeerBerry. In Addition, there is also a strong overlap in terms of team members.

The spin-off was founded primarily because PeerBerry and Crowdpear pursue different business models that are assessed differently from a regulatory point of view. Combining the two platforms under one roof would therefore not be possible.

For the marketplace model practised by PeerBerry, in which short-term consumer loans are offered by external lenders, there is no regulation at EU level yet (PeerBerry had rejected a possible regulation in Latvia). On the other hand, crowdfunding regulation exists for platforms such as Crowdpear, where investments are primarily made in secured real estate loans and business loans.

For this reason, the decision was made to set-up a regulated platform with Crowdpear, which was officially founded in August 2021. The launch in early 2022 was postponed due to the war in Ukraine. In October 2022, the platform accepted first registrations. The first loans were offered at the beginning of 2023.

Who owns Crowdpear?

Crowdpear has three shareholders, whose shares are divided as follows:

  • Vytautas Stražnickas (50%)
  • Vytautas Olšauskas (25%)
  • Ivan Butov (25%)

Vytautas Olšauskas (25%) and Ivan Butov (25%) are two shareholders who are also registered as owners at PeerBerry with the same shares.

Vytautas Stražnickas (50%), on the other hand, is a manager at one of the oldest printing companies in Lithuania, where he has been active for 25+ years – Garsu Pasaulis. Vytautas also holds one of the leading positions at the Aventus Group in Poland.

crowdpear-review-ownership

Crowdpear Management

crowdpear-ceo

CEO of the Crowdpear platform is the Lithuanian Vytautas Olšauskas. He is also a member of the board at Mano Bank, which he co-founded. This is why his influence on Crowdpear is more of a strategic nature and less in day-to-day operations.

Arūnas Lekavičius, who should be known to many investors for years as PeerBerry CEO (since January 2019), acts as the external representative.

On the Crowdpear website, investors can find more information about the platform’s team members. It is striking that there is a lot of overlap with the PeerBerry team. Among them is Rita Simanavičiūtė, who is responsible for marketing and PR.

Business Model & Finances

Throughout the process of due diligence, investors should also have a look at the business model of a P2P platform as well as the overall financial situation. How does the company earn money? Does the platform operate profitably? And how well is the company positioned financially? In the following paragraphs of this Crowdpear review, you can follow-up on those questions.

How does Crowdpear earn money?

crowdpear-review-how-does-crowdpear-earn-moneyCrowdpear monetises itself primarily through a brokerage fee, which is charged to borrowers upon successful project financing. This can be between 2% and 5% of the financed loan amount.

Other sources of income include administrative fees, penalty fees or early termination fees. For investors, on the other hand, investing on Crowdpear is free of charge.

A detailed overview of the fees charged can be found in this price list.

Is Crowdpear profitable?

Since Crowdpear only financed its first projects at the beginning of 2023, the platform is still far from reaching a profitable level. In order to reach the break-even point, the platform – according to its own information – would have to achieve an outstanding portfolio of around €12 M in order to cover the current cost structure.

However, it has been emphasised that the quality of the loan portfolio is more important than the short-term goal of profitability.


Sign Up and Bonus

In order to invest on Crowdpear, investors must meet two requirements: A minimum age of 18 years and a residence in the European Union or the European Economic Area.

Overall, the registration process is relatively simple and intuitive. After opening the account via email, the KYC (Know-Your-Customer) and AML (Anti-Money-Laundering) questionnaires must be completed. This is followed by the verification of identity and the declaration of tax domicile.

Also legal entities have the opportunity to register on Crowdpear.

Bonus for New Investors

If you sign up for Crowdpear using this link, you will receive a 1% cashback on all investments made in the first 90 days after registration.


Investing on Crowdpear

How does Crowdpear work and what should investors know and consider when investing on the plaform? In the following sections of my Crowdpear review you will find all the necessary information that you need.

The Loan Offering

crowdpear-review-p2p-lendingCrowdpear offers investments in secured real estate loans from Lithuania on its platform.

Due to low supply, there is currently no Auto Invest function. Instead, projects have to be selected manually. A second borrower country, Spain, is to be added in the foreseeable future.

The minimum investment amount on Crowdpear is €100.

A special feature of Crowdpear is that interest is calculated from the first day of the investment. On other crowdfunding platforms, the payment is usually made at the end of the loan term.

It is also important to note that Crowdpear acts as an intermediary between borrowers and investors. This means that the loan agreements are concluded with the borrower and not with the platform. In case Crowdpear had to file for insolvency, the claims would still exist.

Costs and Fees

There are no costs or hidden fees for investors on Crowdpear. Both deposits and withdrawals are free, as is investing on the platform itself.

Expected Returns on Crowdpear

Crowdpear promotes interest rates of up to 13% (15% at the very beginning). The average expected return, according to previous loan projects, is 11.22%. Compared to other crowdfunding platforms that can offer a similarl level of security, this can be considered a competitive return. Overall, Crowdpear offers a very attractive return for the underlying risk.

crowdpear-review-2023-return

Secondary market

On Crowdpear, investors can use the secondary market to sell their loans early and thus increase liquidity. Both a discount and a premium can be set for the respective project.

crowdpear-review-secondary-market

If the sale is successful, the seller is automatically charged a fee of 2% from the transaction amount. The buyer, on the other hand, is not charged any fees.

Crowdpear Forum

If you have questions about Crowdpear, other platforms or different p2p-related topics, you can join the re:think P2P Community on Facebook and engage in discussions with more than 1,000 other private retail investors.

Alternatively, you can also find the latest news and updates on my Telegram channel.


Crowdpear Taxes

Generally, interest income generated through loan financing is considered capital income and thus must be declared as such in the tax return.

As a Lithuania-based P2P platform, Crowdpear is legally obliged to withhold tax – at a rate of 15% – on interest income earned. This is automatically withheld by the platform. Investors can reduce the withholding tax to 10% by filling out a “DAS-1 form” and sending it to the platform.

As there is a double taxation agreement between Lithuania and most European countries, the withholding tax can be offset. This means that it is not paid twice.

crowdpear-review-taxes

Investors can also download a corresponding document for the tax return via the dashboard at the “Statements” section.


Crowdpear Risks

When evaluating a P2P platform, investors should look very carefully at the possible risk factors and weigh them up before making an investment. What do you have to look out for at Crowdpear? Where are the risks and how should they be assessed?

The platform itself offers an initial overview. In this document, Crowdpear lists a number of possible risks, including default risks or recovery difficulties.

Risk Assessment

crowdpear-review-risk-assessmentThe loans offered on Crowdpear are 100% secured by first-rank mortgages. In case of payment difficulties or defaults, the sale should protect the investment. According to its own information, the platform only finances loans at a loan-to-value (LTV) of up to 80%.

To minimise the risk of loan defaults, Crowdpear follows a set of regulatory requirements that dictate how risks associated with loan projects must be assessed. This includes that the platform only works with real estate appraisers officially approved by the regulatory authority in the context of real estate appraisals.

In addition, the property valuations are checked by internal risk managers. For this purpose, Crowdpear obtains a range of data and information from public registers and databases to check the borrower’s history, creditworthiness, or reputation.

crowdpear-review-risk

Once all the necessary documentation has been gathered and all the data has been verified, Crowdpear’s internal credit committee makes a final decision on the financing of the project.

Is Crowdpear a Safe P2P Plattform?

In general, Crowdpear can be considered as a safe P2P platform.

  • Regulation and supervision by the Central Bank of Lithuania
  • Obtaining of ECSP licence (EU Crowdfunding Regulation)
  • Separation of investor and company funds
  • Proven good performance of real estate projects via PeerBerry (0 defaults)

Pros & Cons

In this section I have listed the most important advantages and disadvantages of Crowdpear.

Advantages

  • Regulation: Crowdpear is controlled and supervised by the Central Bank of Lithuania. In July 2023, Crowdpear also obtained the licence for the new EU Crowdfunding Regulation (ECSP licence).
  • Custody of Investor Funds: Legally monitored account segregation of investor and company funds.
  • Experienced Team: A large part of the PeerBerry team is involved in building and developing the platform.
  • Risk-Reward Profile: The expected returns are very competitive for the risk profile.
  • Liquidity: Loans can be sold early via secondary market.

Disadvantages

  • Small Offer: Crowdpear is still at the very beginning and thus only offers small amount of new loans.
  • Low Diversification: So far, investors can only invest in Lithuanian loans.
  • Withholding Taxes: Withholding taxes of 15% or 10% are withheld from private investors.

Crowdpear Alternatives

Due to its business model, the currently closest Crowdpear alternative would be Profitus. Also this platform offers primarily Lithuanian and property-secured business loans. Other direct competitors in Lithuania include Letsinvest, Nordstreet and InRento.

You can find other Crowdpear alternatives on the P2P Platform Comparison page.

Why not choosing PeerBerry?

Crowdpear is a spin-off from PeerBerry. This means that there is a high degree of overlap between the two platforms, which is why additional diversification should be questioned. Is it worth investing on Crowdpear as well as on PeerBerry? I think: Yes!

 CrowdpearPeerBerry
StartedJanuary 2023November 2017
HeadquarterVilnius, LithuaniaZagreb, Croatia
RegulatedYes (Central Bank of Lithuania)No
Primary Loan TypeReal Estate LoansConsumer Loans
CollateralMortgageBuyback Guarantee
  1. In contrast to PeerBerry, Crowdpear is a regulated P2P platform with a significantly higher level of security.
  2. The primary lending segment is a completely different field with secured real estate loans.
  3. The real estate projects on PeerBerry so far (38 loans worth €27 M) have shown a good performance so far (0 defaults after 5 years).

Summary Crowdpear Review 2024

What is the final verdict of my Crowdpear review and my personal opinion?

Crowdpear is still a young P2P platform, but already offers a great framework for long-term success: a regulated environment, loans with competitive interest rates and an experienced team in the background that has a proven track record of successfully managing a mortgage-backed portfolio in the past.

The quality of the loan portfolio is outstanding so far, as there have been neither delays nor defaults. If this performance can be maintained, Crowdpear will have many opportunities for growth in the coming years.

Anyone looking for a regulated P2P platform with property-backed loans should consider Crowdpear as an addition to their P2P portfolio.


FAQ Crowdpear Review

What is Crowdpear?

Crowdpear is a Lithuanian-based crowdfunding platform where investors can invest in mortgage-backed real estate loans from Lithuania and earn an average return of 11.2%.

Who owns Crowdpear?

Crowdpear has three shareholders, whose shares are divided as follows: Vytautas Stražnickas (50%), Vytautas Olšauskas (25%) and Ivan Butov (25%).

Is Crowdpear safe?

In general, Crowdpear can be considered as a safe P2P platform. The platform is controlled and monitored by the Central Bank of Lithuania, there is a separation of investor and company funds, as well as a proven good performance of real estate projects via PeerBerry (0 defaults).

Which returns can be expected?

The interest rate is promoted with up to 13%. The average expected return, according to previous loan projects, is 11.22%.

Is there a bonus for new investors?

If you sign up for Crowdpear using this link, you will receive a 1% cashback on all investments made in the first 90 days after registration.

Hi, ich bin Denny! Seit Januar 2019 schreibe ich auf diesem Blog über meine Erfahrungen beim Investieren in P2P Kredite. Meine Analysen sollen Privatanlegern dabei helfen reflektierte und gut informierte Anlageentscheidungen treffen zu können. Dafür schaue ich mir die Risikoprofile der einzelnen P2P Plattformen an, hinterfrage deren Entwicklungen, teile meine persönlichen Einschätzungen und beobachte übergeordnete Trends aus der Welt des Crowdlendings.    
Mein Bestseller "Geldanlage P2P Kredite" gilt in Fachkreisen als das beste deutschsprachige Finanzbuch zum gleichnamigen Thema. Zudem versammeln sich in der P2P Kredite Community auf Facebook tausende von Privatanlegern, die sich regelmäßig über die Anlageklasse P2P Kredite austauschen. 

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