Cashplus Bank announces successful bid for BCR funding to boost UK small business banking and announces £5bn of new SME lending
20th October 2021: Cashplus, the leading SME fintech bank, has today been announced as the winner of the largest £5m grant from the £12.5m available under Pool F of the BCR Capability and Innovation Fund.
As part of its successful bid, the company plans to lend an additional £5bn to UK small businesses within the next four years. Cashplus Bank also has committed to invest £10m of its own funding towards SME banking initiatives and return up to £2m in cashback to its small business customers by the end of 2022, rising to £51m by the end of 2025.
These initiatives include:
- An SME credit card to meet unserved demand for small business lending. The product will offer 1% cashback on all lending and open up functionality to allow customers to pay through Open Banking enabled payment options. Cashplus will lend to an additional 100k SMEs within the first year
- Account opening and switching tools to drive competition in SME banking, including a lending eligibility checker and an SME version of the company’s trailblazing credit builder product which will allow small businesses to improve their business credit score and help gain cheaper access to funding
- Advanced tools to help small businesses with managing reconciliation and Making Tax Digital
A recent report from the All Party Parliamentary Group for Fairer Banking highlighted a £22bn funding gap and data from Cashplus shows 65% of new companies are refused credit by mainstream lenders.
Since launching in 2005, Cashplus has lent almost £700m and is the only digital challenger with proven credit and profitable lending capability. Focusing on sole traders, micro and small businesses, its products range from business current accounts, credit cards to wider corporate payment solutions such as bulk payments and payroll. It currently serves 7% of all newly formed businesses.
Earlier in 2021, it received a full banking licence from the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) and has around £500m in customer deposits.
Rich Wagner, CEO of Cashplus, said: “We are delighted to be awarded this £5m grant. Cashplus Bank has a strong record of using product innovation to drive competition and offer better banking options for UK SMEs, many of whom are turned away or poorly served by high street banks. We understand that small businesses too often face the Catch 22 situation of trying to build a credit footprint while being refused even a modest loan. The big banks just aren’t interested and it’s our mission to step in and support this vital pillar of the UK economy.
“Cashplus is the currently the strongest and most credible challenger to the incumbent high street banks, with a sustainable business model that has returned nine years of profits and already serves seven per cent of all new UK start-ups. We look forward to implementing these new initiatives with the £5m grant.”
Cashplus is a leading UK challenger bank with a 15-year track record of digital innovation, dedicated customer service and strong financial performance. A true fintech pioneer, we offer faster, smarter, simpler banking services for the entrepreneurs, independent businesses and consumers that power the UK economy, yet are too often overlooked by high street banks. Since 2005, we’ve created easier ways for more than 1.6m customers to pay, bank and borrow through our user-friendly digital platform, delivered a string of fintech firsts and built a sustainable, growing business providing more than 250 jobs in the UK with locations in London, Liverpool and Birmingham.
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