YieldStreet: Online Investment Marketplace
Date: Monday , October 19, 2015
If you are a typical hard-working professional, you are wondering how you can possibly grow your savings into real wealth in the current investing environment. You are likely thinking, Bank rates are almost 0 percent, and stock and bond markets are so volatile. I need investments with less volatility and better yields. Do such investments even exist? Can I access them? Is there an easy way to evaluate and invest in them affordably?
This problem inspired Milind Mehere and Michael Weisz to start YieldStreet, an online marketplace that has democratized investing by connecting accredited investors to asset-based investments with attractive yields that were once reserved for the uber wealthy and institutional investors. YieldStreet\'s $5,000 minimum makes investing in small business loans, receivables funding, real-estate lending, legal finance, and even pro-athlete loans finally possible for accredited investors. That is why Business Insider has named YieldStreet one of the \'Top 20 Companies Changing Wall Street.\'
We started YieldStreet so accredited investors could finally access asset-based investment opportunities, says founder and CEO Milind Mehere. Our easy-to-use platform provides due diligence details for each offering, and our investors invest and manage their accounts online. Participating in YieldStreet offerings is as simple as buying stock or ETF online. We intend to forever change how people invest and think about financial planning and wealth management.
YieldStreet provides offerings from businesses with proven management teams seeking affordable capital. These offerings provide target yields between 8-25 percent are backed by strong collateral, and are short in duration. Prior to beginning due diligence, says YieldStreet founder and President Michael Weisz, every offering must meet YieldStreets three-rule investment philosophy: 1) Present low correlation to broader markets, 2) Represent greater asset value than the investment amount, 3) Be offered by an easy-to-understand business run by proven managers.
The 2012 Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act opened the door to general solicitation and crowd funding online, and was the catalyst for YieldStreets formation. YieldStreets recent Quest Livery Leasing offering is just one example. Quest is a NYC-based lease-to-own company that provides cars to livery drivers eager to work with ride sharing or limo services like Uber, Lyft or Carmel. Quest turned to YieldStreet to raise $600K of growth capital.
Quests offering was secured by 29 livery vehicles with aggregate value greater than the loan. The duration is 28 months, with principal and interest payments made to investors bi-monthly with a target annual rate of 13 percent. YieldStreet investors are earning attractive yield, like that their investment is backed by strong assets, and feel good knowing they are helping create local jobs.
Technology is a critical differentiator for YieldStreet. Investors enjoy a strong servicing platform that provides offering details, e-sign, a portfolio dashboard and bank integration. On the borrowing side, YieldStreets origination platform supports borrowers in due diligence, evaluation and presenting their offerings quickly and efficiently.
YieldStreet provides learning tools to help investors make informed decisions. We strongly believe in educating our investor base, Mehere explains, as they many not are familiar with asset class or evaluating the loan. We intend to launch YieldStreet University to help millions of investors understand alternate investments as a viable asset class they can use confidently in their portfolio mix.
We intend to become the number-one marketplace where investors can create diversified portfolios with varying returns, duration, and assets. This will allow our investors to complement their existing investment strategies and achieve their financial goals, concludes Weisz.