Ethical investing is a key goal for crowdfunding platforms across Europe, according to a new report.

The CrowdSpace crowdfunding research project, created by tech company JustCoded, studied peer-to-peer lending and crowdfunding platforms in 19 countries.

He found that 27 percent already offer green energy and impact investing opportunities, while 12 percent focus solely on impact investing.

The report also found that 13% are proposing to invest in biotechnology and health alongside other sectors.

Almost half (49 percent) of the platforms surveyed said they have already implemented sustainable development policies and 19 percent have them at the planning stage.

“There is a growing trend to invest in impact and green energy,” the report says.

“More and more platforms are offering these kinds of investment opportunities, and some are focusing only on renewable energy, social impact and sustainability. “

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The report also showed that adoption of open banking is relatively slow – the data-sharing initiative that mirrors the EU’s revised Payment Services Directive.

Only three percent of platforms use open banking and 14 percent said they intend to start using the initiative.

Platforms are even more hesitant to implement blockchain technology.

75% of platforms said they are not using blockchain and have no intention of doing so, only 5% of platforms have already implemented the technology and 20% plan to do so in the future.

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“Despite the popularity in the news, the implementation of blockchain is not a top priority for crowdfunding platforms, although it can add value to real estate crowdfunding platforms that would like to offer a tokenization of active, ”the report says.

The research also revealed that regulation is seen as a challenge by a number of platforms.

New alternative funding rules enter into force in the EU in November 2021, with the aim of harmonizing the crowdfunding industry and allowing platforms to grow across the bloc.

63% of platforms said they were preparing for the new regulation, while 31% said it did not apply to them and 6% said it was nowhere in their immediate plans.

“The majority of the platforms we interviewed are directly authorized by the regulator,” the report says.

“Some of them admit that they would like to expand into other countries, but the regulations are making it more difficult at the moment.”

In June, the Cambridge Center for Alternative Finance’s Global Alternative Finance Market Benchmarking Report found that global online alternative finance transactions, excluding China, were up 24% year-on-year. to reach $ 113 billion (£ 81.6 billion) in 2020.

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