Finance · 13 January 2017

Funding Circle targets small businesses with £81m investment

Alternative funding
Funding Circle has reported to have generated £2.7bn to the UK economy since 2010

Peer-to-peer lending platform Funding Circle has announced new equity investment worth £81m, committing itself to supporting finance opportunities for small UK companies.

The new Funding Circle investment came primarily from Accel Partners, a US venture capital firm, as well as a range of contributions from other existing investors.

The online lender has pledged to reinvest the money into its own infrastructure, as well as hiring more staff to grow its UK offices.

As Funding Circle strengthens its own online platform, British entrepreneurs can expect more opportunities to attract investors through the peer-to-peer model’s favourable interest rates.

Commenting on the investment, Funding Circle chief executive and co-founder, Samir Desai, said that the next step for the platform was to “help thousands of small businesses access finance and create jobs”.

Chancellor Philip Hammond welcomed the news, praising the role that Funding Circle has played in supporting investment in UK businesses.

“Funding Circle has become a real success story for British fintech, and news that it has attracted £81m of investment is further evidence of the growing importance of this industry.

“This is another vote of confidence in a UK firm that plays an important role in our economy – helping businesses to grow and create jobs,” he said in a statement.

This latest funding round for Funding Circle comes after the British Business Bank committed a loan at the beginning of January to Funding Circle worth £40m to invest in startup companies.

According to the Centre for Economics and Business Research, lending via Funding Circle has generated £2.7bn to the UK economy since 2010 with investment in over 25,000 small businesses.

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ABOUT THE EXPERT

Simon Caldwell is deputy editor at Business Advice. He has a BA in politics and communications from the University of Liverpool, and has previously worked as a content editor in local government and the ecommerce industry.

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