In 1999, economist Peter Verhaar founded investor bank Alex. A fintech avant la lettre, you could say. Yet he is best known from television: during the crisis he often commented on the economic situation. Peter has been investing in MisterGreen for a few years now. We are curious why. And what does he expect from the electric lease market? On a sunny Tuesday afternoon we met with him, in his hometown Amsterdam. What does an economist and investor thinks of MisterGreen?.
Hi Peter, I understand that you are busy. What keeps you busy?
'At the moment I write a lot about current financial topics. In addition, I am a director of two young fintechs: BrightPension and Monefy. The first offers pensions for self-employed workers, employees and entrepreneurs who do not have a collective labor agreement, and has now grown into a scale-up. Monefy is still in its early stages, but has big plans to turn the mortgage market upside down. I also advise APG, de Volksbank and the Sociale Verzekeringsbank. And Straetus, a revolutionary debt collection agency that does not immediately send the bailiff, but first talks with debtors.'
And you invest in MisterGreen. How did you come into contact with us?
'Via duurzaaminvesteren.nl, a crowdfunding platform that connects green projects and investors. I invest via a lot of platforms - also 'gray' - but Sustainable Investing is a favorite. Because they carefully weigh the interests of all parties, including those of me as a lender. On other platforms, the balance sometimes wants to hit the side of the entrepreneur. MisterGreen regularly places financing requests on the platform, usually in order to finance the expansion of the vehicle fleet. And because you have a nice financial offer, I jumped into it. The first time with a small amount, but as my confidence grew, I started to invest more. I have now invested six times.'
"MisterGreen least kwalitatief hoogstaande auto’s, die na gebruik nog een aardige restwaarde hebben. Genoeg gronden dus om aan te nemen dat investeren in MisterGreen verantwoord is."
What makes you so attractive about our financial offer?
'A number of things. To begin with, it gives me a nice return: MisterGreen offers four-year loans, at 6% interest per month. You do not get that at a bank. And after the term I get my entire investment back. In addition, these are reasonably safe investments. Every application for funding from MisterGreen is aimed at a specific customer group, which I can view in detail on the platform. That way I know exactly in which companies - often SMEs - I invest. So I can check whether they are a bit solvent. And because they basically already have a lease contract, the sales are guaranteed. Finally, MisterGreen leases high-quality cars, which still have a nice residual value after use. Enough reasons to assume that investing in MisterGreen is justified.'
How do you look at the electric lease market? What do you expect?
'That it will continue to grow for a while. Maybe not as fast as some optimists claim - that everyone drives electric cars within ten years, I really can not imagine. The existing fossil fleet is still too new, people are too stubborn and too many problems have to be solved. For example, the range of electric cars really needs to be increased even further. On the other hand, everyone sees that the stock of fossil fuels runs out. And that we must therefore use other sources in order to remain mobile. In addition, the major car manufacturers such as BMW, Audi and Volkswagen are now also seriously involved in electric driving. It is not just more Tesla that indented with slick cars on the energy transition, an important signal that the sector continues.'
You are an economist and often give advice. What tip do you have for MisterGreen?
'I see that MisterGreen now puts a lot of emphasis on Tesla. Understandable, of course, because Elon Musk has made electric driving hip. In a Nissan Leaf not everyone wants to be seen, but with a Model X you can arrive. Nevertheless, I would advise you to keep an eye on the big car manufacturers. For example, the giants in Germany do not sit still. In addition, they have a much larger potential production capacity than Tesla. Anyway, I assume I am not telling anything new; you keep an eye on this."
We indeed keep an eye on things, rest assured. Finally: are you open to a next investment in MisterGreen?
'Yes of course! As long as the financial offer remains attractive, I am certainly open to it.'