We have cooperated with banks, trust companies, and other institutional funding partners who funded the loans for our borrowers. In addition, prior to September , we, at our sole discretion, paid ZhongAn for substantially all the loan principal and interest default but have not been subsequently collected through some of our entities lacking qualifications to provide financing guarantee.
It is uncertain whether we would be deemed to operate financing guarantee business because of our cooperation model with ZhongAn and our current arrangements with banks, trust companies and other institutional funding partners. As of the date of this prospectus, we have not been subject to any fines or other penalties under any PRC laws or regulations related to financing guarantee business.
Given the evolving regulatory environment of the financing guarantee business, we cannot assure you that we will not be subject to any fines, penalties or other liabilities, or be required in the future by the relevant governmental authorities to obtain approval or license for financing guarantee business to continue our collaboration with banks, trust companies and other institutional funding partners. If we are required to amend the current model or are no longer able to collaborate with banks, trust companies or other institutional funding partners at all, or become subject to penalties, our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects could be materially and adversely affected.
We offer our products and services based on risk assessment conducted by our proprietary credit analysis and risk management system, which is strengthened by ZhongAn's insurance decision opinion based on its credit analysis model. In particular, we, at our sole discretion, took on the substantial credit risk of the borrowers for the loans with credit insurance provided by ZhongAn prior to September and under the guarantee provided by Shenzhen Tangren, our consolidated VIE with the financing guarantee license, for certain loan products we facilitate in addition to ZhongAn's credit insurance Shenzhen Tangren's compensation obligation shall not exceed the financial guarantee service fees Shenzhen Tangren collectible from all the borrowers for such loans after September Our system uses machine learning and modeling techniques to analyze transaction and repayment data from loans that we facilitated and data from applicants and other third-party sources.
Even though we have accumulated a large amount of applicant data and extensive credit analysis experience to perform risk management analysis in our system, our credit analysis and risk management system may not be continuously effective as we continue to increase the amount of loans we facilitate, expand our borrower and investor base and broaden our borrower and investor acquisition and engagement efforts through different channels in the future.
If our credit analysis model contains inaccurate assumptions or inefficiencies through model updates, or if the credit data and analysis we obtain are inaccurate or outdated, our credit analysis could be negatively affected, resulting in inaccurate decision. If we are unable to effectively and accurately assess the credit profiles of applicants based on their credit profiles, we may either be unable to offer attractive service fee rates and products and services to borrowers, or unable to maintain low delinquency rates for loans we facilitate or to attract investors with satisfactory annualized investment return for our investment products.
In addition, our credit analysis may not be able to provide more predictive assessments of future borrower behavior and result in better evaluation of our borrower base as compared to our competitors. Furthermore, our risk management model and system may not optimally protect our business against systemic risk.
If our proprietary credit analysis and risk management system fails to perform effectively, our business, liquidity and results of operations may be materially and adversely affected. If we are unable to maintain low delinquency rates for transactions facilitated by us, our business and results of operations may be materially and adversely affected. Investments in loans on our platform involve inherent risks as the return of the principal on a loan investment made through our platform is not guaranteed, although we aim to limit investor losses due to borrower defaults within an industry acceptable range through various preventive measures we have taken or will take.
The delinquency rate by balance for outstanding loans that were 91 to days past due increased from 0. Our ability to attract and retain borrowers and investors is significantly dependent on our ability to effectively assess a borrower's credit profile and maintain low delinquency rates. To conduct this assessment, we have employed a series of procedures and developed a proprietary credit assessment and decisioning model. Our credit scoring model aggregates and analyzes the personal information submitted by a prospective borrower as well as the data we collect from a number of internal and external sources, and then generates a credit assessment result for the prospective borrower.
If our credit scoring model contains programming or other errors, is ineffective or the information provided by borrowers or third parties is incorrect or stale, our loan pricing and approval process could be negatively affected, resulting in misclassified loans or incorrect approvals or denials of loans.
If we are. For example, Xiaoying Preferred Loan is high-credit-limit unsecured loan product. As for loans funded by institutions, the credit line could be up to RMB, The borrowers of Xiaoying Preferred Loan are usually real estate property owners. We assess the borrowers' credit ability by verifying their property ownership certificates and mortgage information in banks. However, we do not own any mortgage rights over the borrower's property if the borrower becomes insolvent or defaults on the loans. Therefore, if the borrower's financial condition deteriorates, we may not be able to take measures to prevent borrower's default and to maintain a low delinquency rates for loans facilitated by our platform.
In addition, the tightening of industry regulations following the release of Circular and Circular 57 resulted in an unexpected short-term volatility of borrower credit performance across our industry. Online lending platforms have ceased extending "cash loans" with the four characteristics as defined under Circular and a number of online lending platforms significantly altered their business models or suspended operations altogether.
The impact is relatively more acute on products with short term and small loan balance, such as Xiaoying Card Loans, as borrowers previously used to be able to easily borrow from other online lending platforms to fund their repayment. The release of Circular and Circular 57 led to liquidity shortage for certain borrowers who relied on lending from other lending platforms to repay Xiaoying Card Loans.
We observed higher delinquency or default rate for Xiaoying Card Loans than previously estimated and accordingly recorded an additional contingent liability of RMB Although investor's entitlement under the loans we facilitated are protected by ZhongAn's credit insurance, if widespread defaults were to occur, investors may still lose confidence in our platform and our business and results of operations may be materially and adversely affected. Moreover, we, at our sole discretion, took on the substantial credit risk of the borrowers with credit insurance provided by ZhongAn prior to September and under the guarantee provided by Shenzhen Tangren, our consolidated VIE with the financing guarantee license, for certain loan products we facilitate in addition to ZhongAn's credit insurance Shenzhen Tangren's compensation obligation shall not exceed the financial guarantee service fees Shenzhen Tangren collectible from all the borrowers for such loans after September The delinquency rates of our loan products directly impacted our financial statements prior to September as we at our sole discretion compensated ZhongAn for substantially all the loan principal and interest default but have not been subsequently collected.
Under New ZhongAn Model, for most Xiaoying Card Loan newly facilitated since September , we negotiate the upper limit of Shenzhen Tangren's compensation obligation prospectively at each quarter with ZhongAn based on the expected default rate. The portion that we are obligated to pay to ZhongAn but are not expected to be collected from the borrowers due to the estimated default or prepayment risk in relation to the guarantee fee is recorded in the change in fair value of financial guarantee derivative.
Moreover, if the total amount of the insurance compensation paid by ZhongAn to the insured investors exceeds the expected maximum payout amount for certain period, ZhongAn is entitled to increase the insurance premium collectible from new borrowers, which would impact our results of operations in the event we are unable to pass on such increase to new borrowers. In addition, when the delinquency rates of our loan products increase, we may also need to increase the guarantee fees that we are entitled from new borrowers.
In the event we are not able to raise the APR to capture such increase in guarantee fees, our results of operations. The pre-agreed upper limit of our compensation obligation to ZhongAn increased from 3. Therefore, if we are unable to maintain low delinquent rates for transactions we facilitated, our business and results of operations may be materially and adversely affected. The data that we collect may be inaccurate due to inadvertent error or fraud. If we fail to detect inaccurate and false information, the performance of our credit analysis will be compromised, and our business, results of operations and brand and reputation will be negatively impacted.
We analyze data provided directly by applicants or with their authorization and data from third parties. The data we receive may not accurately reflect an applicant's creditworthiness because such data may be based on outdated, incomplete or inaccurate information due to inadvertent error or fraud.
In addition, the completeness and reliability of consumer credit history information in the PRC is relatively limited. The People's Bank of China, or PBOC, has developed and put into use a national personal and corporate credit information database which remains relatively underdeveloped. We conduct data screening to detect inaccurate information and improve the quality of the data input for our credit analysis model.
However, our data screening and anti-fraud systems may be insufficient to accurately detect inaccurate and fraudulent information. Such inaccurate or fraudulent information could compromise the accuracy of our credit analysis and adversely affect the effectiveness of our control over our delinquency rates.
We may not be able to recoup funds underlying loans made in connection with inaccurate or fraudulent data, which may materially and adversely affect our results of operations. To better assess a borrower's creditworthiness, we consult the insurance decision opinion from ZhongAn based on its credit analysis and cooperate with third-party credit agencies and databases for credit data of borrowers.
However, due to the underdevelopment of an industry-wide information sharing arrangement, we are unable to determine whether applicants have outstanding loans through other online lending platforms at the time they obtain a loan from us or the aggregate amount borrowed by a borrower through our platform and other online lending platforms.
This creates the risk that a borrower may borrow money through us in order to pay off loans on other online lending platforms and vice versa. The additional debt may adversely affect the borrower's creditworthiness generally, and could result in the financial distress or insolvency of the borrower, impairing the borrower's ability to repay the loan and the investor's ability to receive investment returns associated with such loan.
In addition, if a borrower incurs debt on other online lending platforms in order to repay our loans, the borrower's ability to repay such loans is limited by the availability of funding sources subject to factors beyond the borrower's control, which may adversely affect our results of operations. For example, the release of Circular and Circular 57 in December tightened industry regulations and resulted in an unexpected short-term volatility of borrower credit performance across our industry.
The impact is relatively more acute. The release of Circular and Circular 57 led to liquidity shortage for certain borrowers who relied on other lending platforms to repay Xiaoying Card Loans. In addition, a significant increase in fraudulent activities could negatively impact our brand name and reputation, discourage investors from investing in loans on our platform, reduce the amount of loans facilitated to borrowers and make it necessary to take additional steps to reduce fraud risk, which could increase our costs.
We may be required to obtain additional value-added telecommunication business licenses. PRC regulations impose sanctions on entities for engaging in the provision of telecommunication business of a commercial nature without having obtained a value-added telecommunication business license. If we fail to obtain licenses required for our business, we could be subject to sanctions including corrective orders and warnings from the PRC telecommunication administration authority, fines and confiscation of illegal gains and, in the case of significant infringements, the websites and mobile applications may be ordered to cease operation.
Pursuant to the Interim Measures, we are required to apply for appropriate telecommunication business operation permit, i. The local government authority has not yet issued the relevant implementation rules regarding such filing and therefore we cannot assure you we will be able to make the necessary filing or apply for the value-added telecommunication business license. Given the evolving regulatory environment of the consumer finance industry and value-added telecommunication business, we cannot rule out the possibility that the PRC communication administration authority or other government authorities will explicitly require any of our consolidated VIEs or subsidiaries of our consolidated VIEs to obtain Internet content provider licenses, or ICP licenses, online data processing and transaction processing licenses, or ODPTP licenses or other value-added telecommunication business licenses, or issue new regulatory requirements to institute a new licensing regime for our industry.
If such value-added telecommunication business licenses are required in the future, or a new license regime is introduced or new regulatory rules are promulgated, we cannot assure you that we would be able to obtain any required license or other regulatory approvals in a timely manner, or at all, which would subject us to the sanctions described above or other sanctions as stipulated in the new regulatory rules, and materially and adversely affect our business and impede our ability to continue our operations. The display of money market products administered by qualified asset management institutions on our platforms and the provision of traffic referral service may be deemed by the regulatory authority as providing ancillary services for online subscription and sale of fund units, which require a telecommunication business license that we currently do not hold and may subject us to rectification or suspension of the aforementioned business if so required by the CSRC.
As ancillary services that we currently provide are not "asset management business" as defined in the Guidance or other applicable Laws and Regulations, we do not believe that we would be subject to the Guidance. However, we cannot assure you if the money market products offered by the relevant financial institutions to which we provide the ancillary services will not be ceased pursuant to the Guidance.
Nevertheless, the interpretation and the enforcement of such regulations in the context of online consumer finance industry remains uncertain, and therefore, it is unclear what kind of value-added telecommunication business licenses we should obtain.
If our products and services do not achieve sufficient market acceptance, our financial condition, results of operations and competitive position will be materially and adversely affected. We facilitate various loan products, in particular Xiaoying Card Loan and Xiaoying Preferred Loan to our borrowers, and provide investment products to investors through Xiaoying Wealth Management. While we intend to broaden the scope of products and services that we offer, we may not be successful in doing so. New products and services must achieve a certain level of market acceptance in order for it to be economically feasible for us to bear the default risks associated with them and recoup our investment costs in developing and bringing them to market.
Our existing or new products and services could fail to attain sufficient market acceptance for many reasons, including: All loans facilitated by us have fixed service fee rates charged by us and interest rates. If prevailing market interest rates rise, the service fee rates and interest rates of loans we facilitate may rise accordingly, and borrowers may be less likely to accept such adjusted terms.
If borrowers decide not to use our products because of such an increase in market interest rates, our ability to retain existing borrowers and engage prospective borrowers as well as our competitive position may be severely impaired. If we are unable to effectively manage such market interest rate risk, our business, profitability, results of operations and financial condition could be materially and adversely affected.
Enhancing the recognition and maintaining the reputation of our brand is critical to the current performance and future growth of our business and competitiveness, since this initiative affects our ability to better attract and serve consumers and to maintain and expand our relationship with our investors. In addition, certain factors that may adversely affect our reputation are beyond our control. Although we selectively establish collaboration relationships with reliable third parties, we.
We have obligations to verify information relating to borrowers and detecting fraud. Our business of connecting investors and individual borrowers constitutes an intermediary service, and our contracts with investors and borrowers are intermediation contracts under the PRC Contract Law. Under the PRC Contract Law, an intermediary that intentionally conceals any material information or provides false information in connection with the conclusion of an intermediation contract, which results in harm to the client's interests may not claim for any service fee for its intermediary services, and is liable for any damage incurred by the client.
Therefore, if we fail to provide material information to investors and are found to be at fault for failure or deemed failure to exercise proper care, or to conduct adequate information verification or supervision, we could be subject to liabilities as an intermediary under the PRC Contract Law.
In addition, the Interim Measures and the Inspection Notice have imposed on online lending information intermediaries, including us, additional obligations to verify the truthfulness of the information provided by or in relation to loan applicants and to actively detect fraud, conduct risk evaluation of lenders, categorize lenders and disclose the risk information on borrowers to the lenders. We leverage a large database of past fraud accounts information and sophisticated rule-based detection technology in detecting fraudulent behaviors.
Based on new data collected and fraudulent behaviors detected during our daily business operations, we update our database on a monthly basis. As the Interim Measures are relatively new, it is still unclear to what extent online lending information intermediaries should exercise care in detecting fraud. Although we believe that as an information intermediary, we should not bear the credit risk for investors as long as we take reasonable measures to detect fraudulent behaviors, we cannot assure you that we would not be subject to any liabilities under the Interim Measures if we fail to detect any fraudulent behavior.
If that were to occur, our results of operations and financial condition could be materially and adversely affected. We finance certain loans offered with our own funds, which may subject us to regulatory risks. We had partially financed certain undersubscribed loans with our own funds in the past to increase matching rate and enhance borrowers' experiences on our platform.
As of the date of this prospectus, we have not been subject to any fines or other penalties due to the fact that certain historical loans on our platform were partially funded with our own funds before the Interim Measures taking effect but remained outstanding afterwards. In addition, we also initially provided credit using our own funds to our borrowers and subsequently sell the loans including the creditor's rights in the loans to investors on our P2P platforms or to institutional funding partners.
We completely ceased such practices with investors on our P2P platforms in April While we do not believe that our initial loan advance would be deemed by the PRC authorities as illegal provision of loans to the general public, which is prohibited by the PRC laws and regulations, as such initial provision of credit is transitory and we do not have the intention to retain the loan at the outset, we cannot assure you that the regulators will hold the same view as ours. We cannot assure you that any practice where we finance loans with our own funds will not be deemed by the PRC government as violating the relevant PRC loans and regulations, including provisions of the Interim Measures, and such practices may also be deemed by the PRC authorities as.
We are subject to risks associated with other parties with which we collaborate. If we cannot effectively cooperate with such other parties or if such other parties fail to perform or provide reliable or satisfactory services, our business, financial condition and results of operations may be materially and adversely affected.
We collaborate with certain other parties in acquiring borrowers, facilitating loans to borrowers and offering investment products to investors. Such other parties include user acquisition partners, other institutions from which we obtain information for our credit assessment model and risk management system, guarantee providers for certain loans we facilitated, such as Jiangxi Ruijing Financial Asset Management Co. In addition, as Jiangxi Ruijing is one of our equity investees, we may be indirectly exposed to its credit risk.
Any failure by these parties to continue with good business operations, comply with applicable laws and regulations, in particular, the relevant laws and regulations in collecting and distribution personal information, or any negative publicity on these parties could damage our reputation, expose us to significant penalties and decrease our total revenues and profitability. In addition, certain of these other parties that we collaborate with have access to our user data to a limited extent in order to provide their services.
In addition, we offer money market products managed by qualified asset management institutions on our platform and provide traffic referral service. Pursuant to the Compliance Checklist, the online lending information intermediaries shall not provide access to financial products offered by other institutions without a prior regulatory permit and shall not advertise such financial products.
Due to the lack of detailed implementation rules to the Compliance Checklist, we cannot assure you that our practice will be not deemed as violation of the Compliance Checklist. We may be required to adjust our business practice and our cooperation with third party institutions may be materially and adversely affected. If our ability to collect delinquent loans is impaired, or there is misconduct in payment collection, our business and results of operations might be materially and adversely affected. We have implemented internal payment and collection policies and practices designed to optimize the repayment process.
We also engage several third-party collection service providers to assist us with payment collection from time to time. However, we may not receive payments as expected on loans that we facilitate. Upon a borrower's default, we will classify the defaulting borrowers into different risk levels based on the type of loan products, outstanding amount, delinquent days and historical repayment pattern.
The third-party collection agencies that we engaged will make phone calls, send text. Moreover, the current regulatory regime for debt collection in the PRC remains unclear. As a result, we may not be able to maintain our efficiency level to collect payments from borrowers and the delinquency rates for our loan products may increase. We cannot assure you that the third party collection personnel will not engage in any misconduct as part of their collection efforts. If we are unable to provide a high-quality user experience, our reputation and business may be materially and adversely affected.
The success of our business largely depends on our ability to provide a high-quality user experience, which in turn depends on factors such as: Our ability to provide high-quality user experience also depends on the quality of the products and services provided by our business partners over which we have limited or no control. In the event that a user is dissatisfied with the quality of the products and services provided by our business partners, we do not have any means to directly make improvements in response to user complaints, and our business, reputation, financial performance and prospects could be materially and adversely affected.
In addition, we depend on our user service hotline and WeChat online user service center to provide certain services to our users. If our user service representatives fail to provide satisfactory service, or if waiting time is too long due to the high volume of calls from borrowers and investors at peak times, our brands and user loyalty may be adversely affected.
In addition, any negative publicity or poor feedback regarding our user service may harm our brands and reputation and in turn cause us to lose users and market share. We had negative cash flows from operating activities of RMB We collect the service fees on a monthly basis from the borrowers. Inability to collect payments from users, borrowers in particular, in a timely and sufficient manner may adversely affect our liquidity, financial condition and results of operations.
Historically, we have issued equity securities to support the growth of our business. As we intend to continue to make investments to support the growth of our business, we may require additional capital to accomplish our business objectives and pursue business opportunities, and respond to challenges or unforeseen circumstances, including developing new products and services, further enhancing our risk management capabilities, increasing our marketing expenditures to improve brand awareness and enhancing our operating infrastructure. Accordingly, we may need to engage in equity or debt financings to secure additional funds.
However, additional funds may not be available when we need them, on terms acceptable to us, or at all. In the event that we obtain debt financing, repayment of debt may divert a substantial portion of cash flow, which would reduce funds available for expenses and payment pursuant to other general corporate purposes. Volatility in the credit markets may also have an adverse effect on our ability to obtain debt financing.
If we raise additional funds through further issuances of equity or convertible debt securities, our existing stockholders could suffer significant dilution, and any new equity securities we issue could have rights, preferences and privileges superior to those of holders our ordinary shares. If we are unable to obtain adequate financing or financing on terms satisfactory to us when it is needed, our ability to continue to accomplish our business objectives and pursue business opportunities, and respond to challenges or unforeseen circumstances could be significantly limited, and our business, operating results, financial condition and prospects could be adversely affected.
We primarily rely on word-of-mouth referral to build our business. Going forward, we intend to promote our brands through marketing. The effectiveness of our marketing efforts are critical to the successful promotion of our brands and our ability to attract borrowers and investors. Our efforts to build our brands may cause us to incur significant expenses. These efforts may not result in increased revenue in the immediate future.
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Even if they do, any increases in revenue may not offset the expenses incurred. Our business and internal systems rely on software and processes that are highly technical and complex. In addition, our business depends on the abilities of these software and processes to store, retrieve, process and manage large amounts of data.
The software and processes on which we rely have contained, and may now or in the future contain, errors or bugs. In addition, in the event of a system outage and physical data loss, our ability to provide products and services would be materially and adversely affected.
The reliability, availability and satisfactory performance of our technology and our underlying network infrastructure are critical to our operations, user service, reputation and our ability to attract new and retain existing borrowers and investors. Our information technology systems infrastructure is currently deployed and our data is currently maintained on customized computing services in China.
Our operations depend on the service provider's ability to protect its and our systems in its facilities against damage or interruption from natural disasters, power or telecommunications failures, air quality issues, environmental conditions, computer viruses or hackers' attempts to harm our systems, criminal acts and other similar events. Any interruptions or delays in our service, whether as a result of third-party error, our error, natural disasters or security breaches, whether willful or not, could harm our reputation and our relationships with borrowers and investors. Additionally, in the event of damage or interruption, our insurance policies may not adequately compensate us for any losses that we may incur.
We also may not have sufficient capacity to recover all data and services in the event of an outage. We are exposed to the risk of misconduct and errors by our employees and parties that we collaborate with. We could be materially and adversely affected if the transactions were redirected, misappropriated or otherwise improperly executed, if personal information was disclosed to unintended recipients or if an operational breakdown or failure in the processing of transactions occurred, whether as a result of human error, purposeful sabotage or fraudulent manipulation of our operations or systems.
It is not always possible to identify and deter misconduct or errors by our employees and other business partners, and the precautions we take to detect and prevent such activities may not be effective in controlling unknown or unmanageable risks or losses. If any of our employees and other business partners misuse or misappropriate funds, commit fraud or other misconduct or fail to follow our rules and procedures when interacting with our users we could be liable for damages and subject to regulatory actions and penalties.
We could also be perceived to have facilitated or participated in the illegal misappropriation of funds, documents or data, and therefore be subject to civil or criminal liability. In addition, we have engaged certain third-party service providers for loan collection services. If we are unable to protect the confidential information of our users and adapt to the relevant regulatory framework regarding protection of such information, our business and operations may be adversely affected.
We have access to, store and process certain personal information and other sensitive data from our users and our business partners, which makes us an attractive target and potentially vulnerable to cyber-attacks, computer viruses, physical or electronic break-ins or similar disruptions. While we have taken steps to protect confidential information that we have access to, our security measures could be compromised. Because techniques used to sabotage or obtain unauthorized access to systems change frequently and generally are not recognized until they are launched against a target, we may be unable to anticipate these techniques or to implement adequate preventative measures.
Any accidental or willful security breaches or other unauthorized access to our system could cause confidential user information to be stolen and be used for criminal purposes. We also face indirect technology, cybersecurity and operational risk relating to the third parties upon whom we rely to facilitate or enable our business activities, including, among others, third-party online payment service providers who manage accounts for certain borrower and investor funds. Any cyber-attack, computer viruses, physical or electronic break-ins or similar disruptions of such third-party payment service providers could, among other things, adversely affect our ability to serve our users, and could even result in misappropriation of funds of our borrowers and investors.
If that were to occur, both we and third-party payment service providers could be held liable to borrowers and investors who suffer losses from the misappropriation. Security breaches or unauthorized access to confidential information could expose us to liability related to the loss of information, time-consuming and expensive litigation and negative publicity. If security measures are breached because of third-party action, employee error, malfeasance or otherwise, or if design flaws in our technology infrastructure are exposed and exploited, our relationships with users could be severely damaged, we could incur significant liability and our business and operations could be adversely affected.
In addition, PRC government authorities have enacted a series of laws and regulations in regard of the protection of personal information, under which internet service providers and other network operators are required to comply with the principles of legality, justification and necessity, to clearly indicate the purposes, methods and scope of any information collection and usage, and to obtain the consent of users, as well as to establish a user information protection system with appropriate remedial measures.
We have obtained consent from our users to use their personal information within the scope of authorization and we have taken technical measures to ensure the security of such personal information and to prevent any loss or divergence of personal information from. However, there is uncertainty as to the interpretation and application of such laws. If such laws or regulations are to be interpreted and applied in a manner inconsistent with our current policies and practices, changes to the features of our system may be required and additional costs incurred.
We cannot assure you that our existing user information protection system and technical measures will be considered sufficient under applicable laws and regulations. If we are unable to address any information protection concerns, or to comply with the then applicable laws and regulations, we may incur additional costs and liability and our reputation, business and operations might be adversely affected. The law requires network products and services providers as we are, among other things, to strictly preserve the secrecy of user information they collect and to store within mainland China data that is gathered or produced by such.
Due to the relatively new nature of the PRC Cybersecurity Law and the lack of clarification in the statutory law itself as to the circumstances and standard under which the law should apply and violations be found, there are great uncertainties as to the interpretation and application of the law. The law's vagueness in its own statutory language also indicates that the CAC, the designated government enforcement agency, will have broad latitude to direct how the law is interpreted and enforced, thus creating greater uncertainties with regard to the interpretation and application of the law since the government enforcement agency has yet to provide further guidance on the enforcement mechanism of the law.
If we are found to have violated the PRC Cybersecurity Law in a government enforcement action, we may face severe penalties that may result in monetary losses, losses of access to assets essential for daily operation of our business or for the continuance of service provision, and temporary or total disruption of our business for an extended period of time.
In addition, the finding of a violation of the PRC Cybersecurity Law, even if later repealed, may cause damages to our reputation and our brand name, causing users to lose confidence in our service and to refrain from choosing or continuing to use our products and services. Furthermore, the stringent reporting obligation imposed by the PRC Cybersecurity Law itself, without a finding of violation, may have a material adverse impact on our business and results of operations. If we fail to implement and maintain an effective system of internal controls over financial reporting, we may be unable to accurately report our results of operations, meet our reporting obligations or prevent fraud.
Prior to this offering, we have been a private company with limited accounting personnel and other resources to address our internal controls and procedures. Our independent registered public accounting firm, has not conducted an audit of our internal control over financial reporting. As defined in standards established by the PCAOB, a "material weakness" is a deficiency, or a combination of deficiencies, in internal control over financial reporting, such that there is a reasonable possibility that a material misstatement of our annual or interim financial statements will not be prevented or detected on a timely basis.
GAAP knowledge and SEC reporting knowledge for the purpose of financial reporting as well as the lack in formal accounting policies and procedures manual to ensure proper financial reporting in accordance with U. For example, we previously interpreted the investor as the only customer for revenue recognition purposes and treated the credit risk of the borrower as a form of implicit price concession in determining the transaction price under Step 3 of ASC 's Five Step Model.
However, subsequent to the issuance of our Group's and financial statements, we determined to recognize both investors and borrowers as customers. As a result, our Group's previously issued consolidated statements of operations for the years ended. The credit risk of the borrower is now reflected as a bad debt expense on the consolidated statement of operations and the net revenue has been grossed up correspondingly to reflect for this restatement. We have also revised our consolidated statements of cash flows to present the bad debt expense as a non-cash operating activity.
There is no impact of this restatement to other line items of the consolidated financial statements of our Group for the same periods. Following the identification of the material weaknesses, we have taken measures and plan to continue to take measures to remedy these weaknesses. Our failure to correct the material weaknesses or our failure to discover and address any other material weaknesses or control deficiencies could result in inaccuracies in our financial statements and could also impair our ability to comply with applicable financial reporting requirements and related regulatory filings on a timely basis.
As a result, our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects, as well as the trading price of our ADSs, may be materially and adversely affected. Moreover, ineffective internal control over financial reporting significantly hinders our ability to prevent fraud. Furthermore, it is possible that, had our independent registered public accounting firm conducted an audit of our internal control over financial reporting, such accountant might have identified additional material weaknesses and deficiencies.
Upon completion of this offering, we will become subject to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of In addition, once we cease to be an "emerging growth company" as such term is defined in the JOBS Act, our independent registered public accounting firm must attest to and report on the effectiveness of our internal control over financial reporting. Our management may conclude that our internal control over financial reporting is not effective. Moreover, even if our management concludes that our internal control over financial reporting is effective, our independent registered public accounting firm, after conducting its own independent testing, may issue a report that is qualified if it is not satisfied with our internal controls or the level at which our controls are documented, designed, operated or reviewed, or if it interprets the relevant requirements differently from us.
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In addition, after we become a public company, our reporting obligations may place a significant strain on our management, operational and financial resources and systems for the foreseeable future. We may be unable to timely complete our evaluation testing and any required remediation. If we fail to achieve and maintain an effective internal control environment, we could suffer material misstatements in our financial statements and fail to meet our reporting obligations, which would likely cause investors to lose confidence in our reported financial information.
This could in turn limit our access to capital markets, harm our results of operations, and lead to a decline in the trading price of our ADSs. Additionally, ineffective internal control over financial reporting could expose us to increased risk of fraud or misuse of corporate assets and subject us to potential delisting from the stock exchange on which we list, regulatory investigations.
We may also be required to restate our financial statements from prior periods. We may not be able to prevent unauthorized use of our intellectual property, which could harm our business and competitive position. We regard our trademarks, domain names, copyrights, know-how, proprietary technologies and similar intellectual properties as critical to our success, and we rely on trademark and trade secret law, confidentiality agreement, invention assignment and non-compete agreements with our employees and others to protect our proprietary rights.
Because of the rapid pace of technological development, we cannot assure you that all of our proprietary technologies and similar intellectual property will be patented in a timely or cost-effective manner, or at all. It is often difficult to register, maintain and enforce intellectual property rights in China. Statutory laws and regulations are subject to judicial interpretation and enforcement and may not be applied consistently due to the lack of clear guidance on statutory interpretation.
Confidentiality agreement, invention assignment and non-compete agreements may be breached by counterparties, and there may not be adequate remedies available to us for any such breach. Accordingly, we may not be able to effectively protect our intellectual property rights or to enforce our contractual rights in China. Preventing any unauthorized use of our intellectual property is difficult and costly and the steps we take may be inadequate to prevent the misappropriation of our intellectual property. In the event that we resort to litigation to enforce our intellectual property rights, such litigation could result in substantial litigation costs and a diversion of our managerial and financial resources.
We can provide no assurance that we will prevail in such litigation. In addition, our trade secrets may be leaked or otherwise become available to, or be independently discovered by, our competitors. To the extent that our employees or consultants use intellectual property owned by others in their work for us, disputes may arise as to the rights in related know-how and inventions. We cannot be certain that our operations or any aspects of our business do not or will not infringe upon or otherwise violate trademarks, copyrights, know-how, proprietary technologies or other intellectual property rights held by other parties.
We may unknowingly infringe on other parties' trademarks, copyrights, know-how, proprietary technologies or other intellectual property rights through our products and services or other aspects of our business.
As a result, we may be subject to legal proceedings and claims relating to the intellectual property rights of others from time to time in the future. Additionally, the interpretation and application of China's intellectual property right laws and the procedures and standards for protecting trademarks, copyrights, knowhow, proprietary technologies or other intellectual property rights in China are uncertain and still evolving, and we cannot assure you. If we were found to have violated the intellectual property rights of others, we may be subject to liability for our infringement or may be prohibited from using such intellectual property, and we may incur licensing fees or be forced to develop alternatives of our own.
As a result, our business and results of operations may be materially and adversely affected. Yue Justin Tang, our founder, Chairman of the board and Chief Executive Officer, is named in a lawsuit filed by ChinaCast Education Corporation in the United States; there is uncertainty as to the outcome of this lawsuit and its impact on us. Tang was an independent director of ChinaCast's board from until January ChinaCast's complaint alleges that certain ChinaCast senior management and directors including Mr. ChinaCast specifically alleges that Mr. ChinaCast is seeking a court judgment that the Defendants are jointly and severally liable for the damages and in addition, a court order compelling Defendants to disgorge all compensation and financial benefits they received from ChinaCast.
This lawsuit is currently in the discovery process. Tang believes that ChinaCast's allegations are without merit and intends to contest them vigorously. However, it is inherently difficult to predict the length, process and outcome of court proceedings, regardless of its merits, this lawsuit can be time-consuming and can divert Mr.
Tang's attention away from our business. Should ChinaCast prevail in the lawsuit against Mr. Tang, Mr. Tang's reputation may be harmed and his assets, including his equity interest in us, may be subject to the enforcement actions brought by ChinaCast, which could also have a material and adverse impact on our reputation and operation. Any failure by us, institutional funding partners payment service providers or funds custody banks to comply with applicable anti-money laundering and anti-terrorist financing laws and regulations could damage our reputation, expose us to significant penalties, and decrease our revenues and profitability.
We have adopted and implemented various policies and procedures including internal controls and "know-your-customer" procedures, for preventing money laundering and terrorist financing. In addition, we rely on our institutional funding partners, payment service providers and funds custody bank, in particular the funds custody bank that handles the transfer of funds from lenders to borrowers, to have their own appropriate anti-money laundering policies and procedures. Our institutional funding partners may be subject to anti-money laundering obligations under applicable anti-money laundering laws and regulations and are regulated in that respect by the PBOC.
We have adopted commercially reasonable procedures for monitoring our institutional investors and payment processors. We have not been subject to fines or other penalties, or suffered business or other reputational harm, as a result of actual or alleged money laundering or terrorist financing activities in the past. However, our policies and procedures may not be completely effective in preventing other parties from using us, any of our institutional funding partners, or payment service providers as a conduit for money laundering including illegal cash operations or terrorist financing without our knowledge.
If we were. Even if we, our institutional funding partners and payment service providers comply with the applicable anti-money laundering laws and regulations, we, our institutional funding partners and payment service providers may not be able to fully eliminate money laundering and other illegal or improper activities in light of the complexity and the secrecy of these activities. The Guidelines purport to require, among other things, Internet finance service providers to comply with certain anti-money laundering requirements, including the establishment of a user identification program, the monitoring and reporting of suspicious transactions, the preservation of user information and transaction records, and the provision of assistance to the public security department and judicial authority in investigations and proceedings in relation to anti-money laundering matters.
The PBOC will formulate implementing rules to further specify the anti-money laundering obligations of Internet finance service providers. The Interim Measures require online lending intermediaries to comply with certain anti-money laundering obligations, including verifying user identity, reporting suspicious transactions and keeping identity data and transaction records.
The Custodian Guidelines require the anti-money laundering obligation to be included in the fund custodian agreements between an online lending intermediary and custody banks, and the online lending intermediary shall cooperate with funds custody banks to fulfill anti-money laundering obligations. From time to time we may evaluate and potentially consummate strategic investments, acquisitions or international expansion, which could require significant management attention, disrupt our business and adversely affect our financial results.
We may evaluate and consider strategic investments, combinations, acquisitions or alliances with other businesses or international expansion to further better serve borrowers and enhance our competitive position. These transactions could have a material impact on our financial condition and results of operations if consummated. Even if we are able to identify an appropriate business opportunity, we may not be able to successfully consummate the transaction and, even if we do consummate such a transaction, we may be unable to obtain the benefits or avoid the difficulties and risks of such transaction, which may result in investment losses.
For example, we incurred impairment of investments of RMB6.
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In addition, we made certain investments through nominee arrangements where we have appointed nominees as registered shareholders of certain investee companies, as we currently do not qualify under certain regulatory financial requirements to be registered as a shareholder of such investee companies. While we believe such investments and the nominee arrangements reflect the true intentions of us and the respective business partners, and are therefore legal and valid under PRC Contract Law, we cannot assure you that the PRC courts or other regulators would hold the same view as ours, and such investments may not have the same effect as direct shareholding ownership in the investee companies where our nominee shareholders may fail to perform their respective obligations under the nominee arrangements, such as, among others, to vote on the shareholders' meetings per our instructions, or to transfer all dividends obtained from such companies to us on a timely manner.
Strategic investments, acquisitions or international expansion will involve risks commonly encountered in business relationships, including: We may not make any investments, acquisitions or international expansion, or, alternatively, any future investments, acquisitions or international expansion may not be successful, may not benefit our business strategy, may not generate sufficient revenues to offset the associated acquisition costs or may not otherwise result in the intended benefits.
Our business depends on the continued efforts of our senior management and key technology development personnel. If one or more of our key executives or key technology development personnel were unable or unwilling to continue in their present positions, our business may be severely disrupted. Our business operations depend on the continued services of our senior management and key technology development personnel. In particular, Mr. Shaoyong Simon Cheng, our president, Mr. Kan Kent Li, our Chief Risk Officer, are critical to the management of our business and operations and the development of our strategic direction.
While we have provided different incentives to our management and key technology development personnel, we cannot assure you that we can continue to retain their services. If one or more of our key executives or key technology development personnel were unable or unwilling to continue in their present positions, we may not be able to replace them easily or at all, our future growth may be constrained, our business may be severely disrupted and our financial condition and results of operations may be materially and adversely affected, and we may incur additional.
We believe our success depends on the efforts and talent of our employees, primarily including technology development, financial products, risk management, general management and sales and marketing. Our future success depends on our continued ability to attract, develop, motivate and retain qualified and skilled employees. It is competitive to attract and retain skilled talent with expertise in technology, risk management, and general management. We may not be able to hire and retain these personnel at compensation levels consistent with our existing compensation and salary structure.
In addition, we invest significant time and resources in the training of our employees, which increases their value to competitors who may seek to recruit them. If we grant employees stock options or other equity incentives in the future, our net income could be adversely affected. We granted incentives and rewards to employees and executives under our share incentive plan.
Although there is a connection between wOBAcon and Team Runs per game more on that in a moment , the values we care about are from onward. As you can see, there is no discernable connection between the rise of the shift and the plunge in baseball offense during that time period. In fact, production on balls in fair play as measured by wOBAcon has been trending upward at the same time scoring overall has been trending downward.
This finding would seem to exonerate the shift. If the value of balls in fair play is not actually declining, then the shift, by definition, cannot be responsible for a coincidental decline in baseball offense. The claim that the shift is responsible for decreased baseball offense is wrong, and changes to the game designed to limit the shift would make no difference, to say nothing of their unintended consequences.
So please, stop blaming the shift. Declining offense is a problem, but it is not being caused by the results of balls in play. Two final points. First, in his Instagraphs piece, Dave Cameron blamed the decline of offense on the increase in strikeouts. It turns out that the seasonal differential between the two wOBAcon minus wOBA is moderately correlated with team runs scored.
In other words, the greater the distance between major-league wOBAcon and wOBA, the more runs we usually have getting scored. What is interesting about the last few years, though, is that this relationship has started to break down:. As you can see from the chart, the differential between wOBAcon and wOBA is greater than it has ever been, which means that run-scoring should be going up , not down.
And yet the opposite is happening, and dramatically so. In other words, something in the system appears to be broken—something like the strike zone, for example. Moreover, the deviation from the predicted trend is growing stronger. In , the standardized residual was In it was In , it was So far, is on pace to deviate even further in this unexpected direction.
We have seen negative deviations of this magnitude before, during the so-called Second Deadball Era of the s. We first saw them from through , when these z-scores ranged from The trend continued as we approached the Year of the Pitcher, reaching After changes were made to the mound and strike zone, the trend then rebounded briefly before plunging again to I mention this because in , the American League adopted the designated hitter. It took 39 years after the addition of the DH for the wOBA differential to veer back into the territory of the s.
This finding is interesting because one idea being floated for increasing baseball offense would be adding the designated hitter to the National League. Would adding the DH to the NL help address this most recent decline in baseball offense? Nice writeup. It is intriguing to see that players batted balls have been increasing productivity according to your wOBAcon formula. It would be interested to bring an analysis of BB and rates and how the shift is affecting them. Are pitchers going after hitters more so the BB rates will decrease?
It is tough to straight up quantify the shift in isolation since it will affect other aspects of the game. Much like a team picking up a closer in trade. This is the key flaw in the argument that contact performance rates define the impact of shifts. If, for example, a hitter, who would normally pull an inside fastball, tries to wait a little longer to beat the shift by going the other way, he may be more prone to swinging and missing i.
Increased velocity, strike zones, etc. No, it is making no prescriptive conclusion. The article is stating that by the measure employed there is no apparent correlation between the increased use of the defensive shift and the continuation of the trend of depressed offense in baseball. I just had a thought and did some quick math to check it; There has been significantly more strikes thrown since If you take the run value of a strike to be 0.
Maybe it just means the run value of a strike is changing over time. Another thought I had while figuring this out — what if the extra strikes are entirely due to increased usage of or talent in pitch framing? The 0. Mark, Nope. The data analysis was done independently to look for trends on batted ball contact, and this one jumped out.
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AC of DC said it correctly. We can have an effective system of shifts that neutralizes certain batters without causing some overall offensive decline. Nothing wrong with a well-pitched, well-defended game. But this area of study is not telling. In fact the numbers basically show that there is none and anything you see is basically a function of the absurdly small samples you are dealing with here. Some of the claims in this piece seem a bit dicey.
In particular, over I mean… if I told you prices for gas over the last few years were: I think the answer is fairly obvious. One the ball needs to be juiced immediately. Two strikeouts need to be greatly disincentivized. The former is an easy fix that is transparent to most fans and will have a dramatic effect.
But instead of a ham fisted style juicing it needs to be done incrementally over five years. Make the ball a bit livelier each year. More home runs and extra base hits lead to more offense, leads to more entertaining games. Thanks for using my picture above for the article. I enjoyed reading it. Jonathan Judge has a degree in piano performance, but is now a product liability lawyer. He has written for Disciples of Uecker and Baseball Prospectus.