Goldbell Group launches private debt investment platform to drive growth in local companies

LOCAL vehicle leasing giant Goldbell Group announced the launch of its private debt investment platform Goldbell Evolution Network (GEN) on Friday which seeks to offer yields of between 5-12 per cent returns.

Having obtained the capital markets services licence from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) in May 2019, the platform will facilitate loans to creditworthy Singapore companies while offering investors an alternative investment opportunity.

Alex Chua, CEO of Goldbell Financial Services, told The Business Times that the minimum investment sum is about S$200,000 and it is currently open to institutional and accredited investors. The loan ticket sizes are generally north of S$20 million with a tenor of about one to two years, with 5-12 per cent annual returns.

Goldbell will curate the investor list as they do not want speculative investors, he said.

“This is not a peer-to-peer lending model, but a co-investment model,” he added.

Goldbell aims to get 500 investors onboard by next year. There are currently about 50 investors on the platform, mainly from family offices, noted Mr Chua.

Goldbell will co-invest around 30 per cent of the amount sought by companies seeking funding through the platform, as a show of confidence in its in-house credit assessment processes, said the group.

This will be carried out through its subsidiary Goldbell Financial Services, which provides financing solutions for companies. Goldbell is Singapore’s largest player in leasing and distribution of commercial and industrial vehicles, with almost four decades of history.

For a start, GEN will focus on loans that are secured by assets such as property and vehicles.  Investment deals on GEN will indicate whether the loans are secured and what the underlying collateral is so that investors have clearer visibility on the risks involved.

Companies seeking to raise funds through the GEN platform have to first submit their interest on their website to be assessed by Goldbell Financial Services. Once approved, investors will then be able to view and participate on these investment opportunities to finance loans through the platform.

The platform will assist with tracking repayments and handling defaults or enforcement, said Goldbell.

Mr Chua said: “Our vision for GEN is to couple technology with our experience and domain knowledge in order to create unparalleled possibilities in financing – enabling an environment for the fulfilment of both investment and funding needs.”

“Goldbell wants to build a truly cohesive community of local business owners and investors who can create more opportunities for the future generations of Singapore and create a self-sufficient business-friendly ecosystem.”