LendingCrowd, Scotland’s only fintech lending platform, has brought together the government-backed Scottish Investment Bank (SIB) – the investment arm of Scottish Enterprise – and Dutch entrepreneurial bank NIBC to form a unique funding deal to provide small and medium-sized businesses with the finances they need to grow.
NIBC and SIB have agreed to lend a combined £18.75 million across LendingCrowd’s platform, with NIBC providing the senior debt for the deal with additional funding from SIB facilitating the overall debt package. This is the second lending deal that the platform has agreed with SIB, the first being the £2.75 million commitment it made in October 2016.
The funding will be made available as business loans to SMEs across Scotland and the rest of Britain, with LendingCrowd fulfilling the increasing demand for small business finance. LendingCrowd will be marketing these funds to British businesses, assessing applications and distributing the finance via its leading edge proprietary online platform, which can provide SMEs with a decision in the same day and access to the funds within 10 days. Businesses from Dundee to Dorset have benefitted from loans of up to £500,000.
This new investment comes after LendingCrowd was selected this year by government-backed Tech Nation for its Upscale 4.0 programme for high-growth UK tech companies.
LendingCrowd provides funding to almost all sectors, and a few of the companies to have benefitted from the platform’s loans include Summerhall Distillery, producer of Pickering’s Gin, Tag Games and Umega Lettings.
Stuart Lunn, founder and CEO of LendingCrowd, commented: “We’ve had a record number of requests for funding from British businesses so far this year, showing that the appetite for alternative sources of finance to fund their ambitions only seems to be getting stronger.
“We are delighted that the Scottish Investment Bank has followed up its first foray into the alternative investment market with this further commitment, and that we have been joined by NIBC, which sees the potential of LendingCrowd and our proven ability to distribute its considerable funding to UK businesses. Going through the due diligence on a deal like this has really shown the strength of our team in building an institutional class lending business.
“There are many small businesses crying out for finance and the funding from SIB and NIBC, coupled with our strong retail investor base, will allow LendingCrowd to help even more companies fulfil their ambitions.”
Kerry Sharp, Director of the Scottish Investment Bank, said: “We are delighted to provide the loan funding to LendingCrowd, Scotland’s marketplace lender, in order to support the substantial funding from NIBC, thereby continuing our efforts to stimulate the Scottish market for alternative and innovative forms of finance. Having worked with LendingCrowd since 2016, we are delighted they have successfully grown their alternative funding operations to attract significant international funding, increasing and broadening the supply of capital to our SMEs – a great example of SIB’s wide and varied role in enhancing Scotland’s access to finance.”
Nils Schaffner, Head of FinTech and Structured Finance UK, NIBC Bank, added: “NIBC Bank has partnered with Fintech companies across our core geographies, including Iwoca, Ebury, and OakNorth in the UK, and we are delighted to support LendingCrowd in their growth ambition. We look forward to working together and seeing LendingCrowd continuing to make a real impact for SMEs seeking funding to realise their goals.”