Minerva Lending plc in default of repayments to investors

Minerva Lending plc has been in default of series C1 and series C2 loans owed to its investors since July 2020, according to reports filed with the Irish Stock Exchange. The bonds were repayable this year.

As stated in the prior announcement, the cause of the delay is that the underlying borrowers have failed to repay loans due for repayment on 30 June 2020.

A partial repayment to investors was expected in October following the repayment of £292,000 to Minerva. Minerva states that it will pursue legal action against the underlying borrowers if payment is not received by December.

In July 2020 the company also delayed interest payments to investors citing “a fraud which involved the re-direction of funds to an erroneous bank account”. A subsequent August announcement stated that matters had been resolved and all outstanding interest payments were to be settled.

Minerva Lending plc has been overdue with its December 2019 annual accounts since September 2020. (Companies House indicates it didn’t apply for the three month extension granted automatically to all companies due to the pandemic.)

Minerva Lending plc was reviewed here in February 2018, when the company was offering Series 9 bonds paying 7% per year with a maturity date of June 2022 (advertised elsewhere as a five year term).

At the time, Minerva’s website claimed “high fixed returns with the security of asset-backing” and “No investor has ever lost a penny investing in Minerva bonds”.

The company’s website was pulled and replaced with an “under construction” notice at some point before July 2019 (Internet Archive). In July 2019 the website consisted of a notice saying “This website is currently being updated and will be back on line soon” plus basic contact details. At some point since that “back on line soon” notice was replaced with “We’re building something new”.

Whatever Minerva are building, having no real website for a year and a half and failing to file legally-required annual accounts on time doesn’t inspire confidence in it.

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