Western Circle: CashFloat, Payday Loans Net, PeraLoans and Quick Loans Express
History and Ownership
Western Circle Ltd is based in London and was incorporated back in March 2011. This company operates through 4 lending brands. The most well known of the pack is CashFloat, whilst the others are Payday Loans Net, PeraLoans and Quick Loans Express. CashFloat has been progressing well locally and this brand has interestingly expanded to Spain (as has PeraLoans). Each are based out in Barcelona and were rolled out in 2017. Western’s corporate site is a little outdated where it states that they have helped 4000+ people. On the Spanish LinkedIn pages that were each recently compiled they however note 20,000+ customers. This is still pretty small compared to the subprime giants with 1 million+ customers.
Float and Pera have been operating since 2014. QLE was taken over from a broker in 2015 and then we have PDNet that is the owner’s latest project that popped up in 2017. The product specs across the range are pretty similar. Both payday and instalment terms are targeted. CashFloat’s search engine rankings are up there with the very best of them and their traffic stats are continually improving with the top 10 now having been cracked. The switch overseas to Spain has been an interesting approach. They may be struggling to compete with Wonga over there where newcomers can at this time benefit from a free first time loan when repaid within 15 days.
Info: CashFloat Loans
www.cashfloat.co.uk (Alexa UK Rank: #47,636)
CashFloat was initially launched as a payday loan provider in 2014. In time they would become more flexible, enabling monthly repay options of 1 to 4. They start quite high on borrowing at £200 that increases to £500 for new applicants. The reloan cap increases to £1100. There are various restrictions in place such as any amount above £900 being fixed at 4 months. Pricing is set against the cap and so that’s £48 per £200 over 30 days. For a 3 month £300 loan the charge would be £143.70 that is good value. CashFloat’s opening hours are restricted to the working week only (9am-5.30pm). This firm does perform very well on top Google searches, especially for payday related terms. This has helped them to rank as a top 10 sector brand. For instalments they fall back to around 15th.
Info: Payday Loans Net
www.paydayloansnet.co.uk (Alexa UK Rank: No Ranking)
Western’s latest project was unveiled in 2017. They generally use the shortened name of PDNet. One of the key differences here is the term range of 1 to 6 months. The amounts are also higher as £200 to £700 (£2000 when returning). The longest 6 month term is however only available when you select at least £1200. For a single month the same £48 per £200 charge is requested. For £300 over 3, the listed price is £145. This is just a little higher than £143.70. The same operational days are noted, but with different times of 8am to 5pm. This site would be advisable if a more sizeable long term loan is required.
www.peraloans.co.uk (Alexa UK Rank: No Ranking)
PeraLoans (aka Pera Loans) targets “Payday Loans for Filipino’s in the UK”. This niche was brought to market by Kabayan Finance in the year 2010. Pera’s site was put together in March 2014 and so this was actually a month before CashFloat’s was composed. This company hasn’t enjoyed any traction and doesn’t manage a global Alexa rank. They do however have the largest social media following of the group at approx 500 on Facebook. This shows that loyalty is being earned with their target demographic. Taking this brand to Spain has been surprising. Surely it would have been a better idea to become more locally established. Whilst being Filipino specialised, they accept all UK residents with a take home pay of £750+ per month. Most of the products specs as CashFloat’s are matched, but they do go cheaper for £300 (3m) at £127.80.
Info: Quick Loans Express
www.quickloansexpress.co.uk (Alexa UK Rank: No Ranking)
The QLE site has been active since early 2013, but a broker ran the site back then. When checking up on the Internet Archive there was no specific mentioned broker though. It appears that Western Circle took control from 2015 onwards. This is the owner’s 2nd most popular project, although we do expect PDNet to take them over the coming months. Alike CashFloat’s product, the terms are 1 to 4 months and the sums are £200 to £500 (£1100 reloan). Alike PDNet though the 3 month charge is £145 and 8am to 5pm is headed. And so, with no lower cost or extended term, there is little incentive in using this particular site.
Reviews: Feefo, Review Centre, Reviews and Trustpilot
There was some CashFloat reviews, but non for the other projects. They score well at Reviews.co.uk with a high rating of 96% from 320+ feedback. The Review Centre rating was 84% from 80+. There was lots of praise in particular being directed at the support team working here.
The starting level of £200 is pretty high over a monthly period. Most competitors typically start from £80 or £100. For a more manageable smaller amount you can receive £50 from the 2 biggest lenders (QuickQuid and Wonga). Ferratum and WageMe are other examples that drop to this. There are many instalment loan providers to pick between. WageDayAdvance would be one such alternative to consider as they offer any month between 1 and 6 and pay out 7 days a week. Peachy closes at weekends, but their term spread is impressive at 1 to 12 months. For a much cheaper deal, Track Loans is the cheapest at 3m and Fair Finance is at 6m.
The Plus Points
We can’t really comment on the 3 smaller companies as there is little feedback for them online as it stands. The central company has been progressing well over the past year and they have started to pick up good support on the review portals. As we are aware, you can expect to find higher acceptance rates here with bad credit in contrast to the top firms. To compete with these though they’d really need to extend to weekends and a few further changes would be ideal such as lowering that starting £200 or perhaps increasing the term to 6m alike PDNet.
Last Updated: January 12th, 2018.