Every day Charles posts a tweet with a number on his profile titled “Don’t Get Swoon”. A count since the day when the neobank Lille Swoon announced that it had been placed in liquidation without returning the money he had deposited with her. It is at 41e.
“In three years, I have placed more than 10,000 euros with Swoon,” he said, worried that he would never see the color again. A heritage that I tried to invest as a good father. ” He is not the only one. Several hundred people like him are waiting to be reimbursed. For some, the sums represent several tens of thousands of euros. The savings of a lifetime.
“I have two priorities: reimburse my customers and find peace of mind”, assures Les Echos, the founder of Swoon, Quentin haddouche. “Three weeks ago, 300 people were waiting for their reimbursement, they are only 140 today,” adds his lawyer, Emmanuel Riglaire. Without giving an exact amount, he recognizes that it still corresponds to several hundred thousand euros.
It must be said that Swoon’s promise was attractive: a savings account paid at 3% which financed businesses in the Lille region. A return to make more than one savings product pale in this period of low interest rates – by comparison, the Livret A is remunerated at 0.5%. But an investment that was not without risk.
On paper, the model was simple: the deposits of individuals should make it possible to lend money to VSE-SMEs at a rate of 5%. “3% for customers, 2% for Swoon,” explains its founder. But in reality, we never got out of savings beta status. “
Everything worked well at first. But in the course of 2020, money transfers started to take longer and longer. Some customers got scared and wanted to get their money back. And the machine seized up. Until liquidation.
Swoon doesn’t have the money
But it is not Swoon who will return the money. “There is a confusion, explains Michaël Aras, the liquidator of fintech. Swoon is a brand that has only developed and sold an application. Behind, there is another company. “
This is called the Guarantee Financial and owned by the founder of Swoon. Presented by Quentin Haddouche as the “parent company” of Swoon, it was supposed to manage the savings and guarantee the funds of Swoon’s clients.
“As Swoon’s liquidator, I am refused access to the accounts of the Financière de Garantie,” explains the agent. I nevertheless made a report to the prosecution which may have the means to investigate. Some savers have deposited more than 100,000 euros. “
When questioned, the prosecution had not yet confirmed this report, or specified whether an investigation had been opened. The DGCCRF has also been notified.
Dissension with partners
“To reimburse customers, the money must go back to the companies in which this money was placed,” defends Emmanuel Riglaire, the lawyer. Not all of them are able to do it immediately ”. In Swoon’s model, the sums deposited had to be immobilized for at least one year to ensure the return of 3%.
In its short existence, Swoon has chained more or less successful partnerships with payment providers, which would ultimately be one of the main activities of the company. Among them : Treezor, Swan, SFPMEI or Bankable, according to several sources.
“There were dissensions with the partners,” sums up Emmanuel Riglaire. Then the company experienced a reputation problem and could no longer attract new customers with the same efficiency. Without fuel, the company could no longer function. “
They joined forces thanks to the classified ads of Les Echos Entrepreneurs
Construction: Rabot Dutilleul raises 6 million for its ecological transition
“If there is no competition, there is no market”