Lending Works continues to fine-tune its product offering suit the pensioner market.
The increased pensioner freedoms, set to arrive in early April, have been widely hailed as a tremendous opportunity for peer-to-peer lenders. Retirees will no longer be required to purchase annuities upon hanging up their boots – freeing up a potentially vast amount of money. Lending Works has been busily tailoring its proposition to better suit these financially liberated pensioners. Last week the platform unveiled a new “Auto Income” tool, which allowed lenders to draw down returned funds at pre-determined intervals, free of charge, creating a regular source of income.
And now the platform has gone a step further. Or, rather, three steps further. Lending Works has announced three new additions to the makeup of the platform – all geared around structuring a product that resonates with pensioners.
The first of these innovations is a 1% bonus for lenders aged 55 and older who channel money into the platform between early April (when the changes come into effect) and April 30th. Very simply, lenders receive a complimentary 1% bonus on any funds lent within the aforementioned timeframe.
Lending Works will also take steps to ensure that all pensioners on the platform are carefully attended to. All new lenders aged 55 and over will be introduced to a named customer account manager. The account manager will be contactable via phone and email in order to help pensioners to navigate their way through lending and account monitoring processes.
And finally, the platform has devised a “Retirement Income Calculator” – a tool that forecasts how much prospective and existing lenders could earn by investing in Lending Works, as opposed to a pension or annuity.
It’s also worth noting that Lending Works has always sought to market itself as amongst the most secure of peer-to-peer offerings. The vaunted Lending Works Shield offers the platform’s investors a three-fold protection: provision fund coverage, insurance coverage and defense against cyber-crime. Not to say, of course, that the platform is completely devoid of risk. But it feels as though Lending Works has been built from an early stage with the pensioner opportunity in mind.
Indeed, over 52% of the platform’s existing lenders are aged 55 or older. And it’s those savers who will soon gain access to greater portions of their pension pots.
“We anticipate a lot of demand for peer-to-peer lending from older lenders when the new pension rules come into force. Our new features respond directly to what this important customer segment need, want and value from their personal finance platforms.
“Our customer feedback shows that lenders value maximum earning potential in a simple, easy-to-use environment over all else. By providing a special offer 1% bonus, we can help our older lenders start earning great interest on a larger lending amount from day one, and the Auto Income tool helps any lender access portions of their money before the end of their term.
“Being an internet company brings many cost and time efficiencies, but many of our customers still value having someone at the end of the phone to answer questions and guide them through the online process. Our dedicated account managers will be on hand to provide this personal support.”
AltFi is returning to Amsterdam for its second annual Summit in the city. The inaugural event last year was a roaring success, with key figures from across Continental Europe's alternative finance and digital banking sectors highlighted. These included Jeroen Broekema, managing director of Funding Circle Netherlands, and Mieke van Engelen, head of innovative partnerships at ABN AMRO's standalone lending platform, New10.