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Confidence boost for UK investors as P2P lending platform Octopus Choice granted full FCA authorisation

  • Nearly £45m has already been invested through platform in nine months since launch
  • Octopus Choice powered by award-winning lender, Octopus Property, which has lent over £2.2bn since 2009 and has a default rate of less than 0.1 per cent
  • Octopus Choice currently developing its Innovative Finance ISA for launch later in 2017

In a boost for investors looking beyond cash in the current low interest rate environment,  Octopus Choice, the property-backed P2P lending platform from fund management company, Octopus Investments, has been granted full authorisation by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

Octopus Choice was launched in April 2016 by Octopus Investments, a firm with a 16-year history in financial services that manages £6bn on behalf of more than 60,000 customers.

Following its launch, the product has become one of the UK’s fastest-growing P2P platforms, having already facilitated nearly £45m of borrowing across more than 75 deals.

Every loan is secured against residential property at conservative loan-to-values (averaging 60 per cent) and is underwritten by Octopus’s award-winning lending team, Octopus Property. Since its launch in 2009, Octopus Property has lent over £2.2bn with a default rate of less than 0.1 per cent.

To provide investors with additional protection, Octopus also invests five per cent in each and every loan at first loss, meaning it would always lose its own money first in the event that anything went wrong. The product was recently singled out as the ‘One to Watch’ at the AltFi 2016 awards.

The FCA authorisation now opens the door for an ISA version of Octopus Choice, following the launch of the Innovative Finance ISA by the Government last year; only firms that have received full FCA authorisation are eligible to offer an IFISA. The Octopus Choice team is currently developing the ISA product with a view to introducing it later in the year.

Richard Wazacz, Head of Octopus Choice, commented:

“The incredible demand we’ve witnessed in the nine months since launch underlines the level of interest for this sort of investment – and the authorisation that the FCA has now granted us will no doubt give renewed confidence to our fast-growing base of investors. With interest rates stuck at all-time lows and inflation predicted to rise significantly in the short term, the returns available through products like Octopus Choice are proving increasingly attractive.

“While we’re currently working on an ISA version of the product that will be made available later this year, our primary focus is on giving the best possible service to the thousands of investors we’ve already attracted. We’ve achieved a huge amount in a very short time, but there’s still plenty we’d like to do to ensure Octopus Choice remains the simplest, safest and most transparent P2P product in the market.”

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For journalists in their professional capacity only. The value of an investment, and any income from it, could fall or rise. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future results. Investors may not get back the full amount they invest. Personal opinions may change and should not be seen as advice or a recommendation. We do not offer investment or tax advice. We recommend investors seek professional advice before deciding to invest. Unless otherwise stated, all data and factual information provided within this document is sourced to Octopus and correct at 6 January 2016.

Issued by Octopus Investments Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered office: 33 Holborn, London, EC1N 2HT. Registered in England and Wales No. 3942880. We may record telephone calls to help improve our customer service.

Octopus Choice is a trading name of Octopus Co-Lend Limited, 33 Holborn, London EC1N 2HT, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. The firm is on the Financial Services Register and its FCA registration number is 722801.