New lenders accredited to British Business Bank Coronavirus Business Loan Schemes

Keith Morgan

The British Business Bank has approved new lenders for various government lending schemes, including two Manchester banks.

Four lenders have been approved to administer the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS), including OakNorth Bank and Secure Trust Bank, who both have Manchester operations.

Metro Bank, which recently opened branches in Manchester and Liverpool, is also one of the four new approvals, as is fintech Greensill, a provider of working capital which has an office in Daresbury where it plans to create more than 200 jobs.

Announcing the recruitment campaign last December, Lex Greensill, CEO and founder of Greensill and an alumnus of Alliance Manchester Business School, said: “We have ambitious plans for 2020 and the development and growth of Greensill’s tech hub in the North West of England is key to our success.

“We see the UK as a global hub for fintech and technology professionals and the North West of England is a hotbed of specialist expertise.”

Their appointment means they will all be able to provide finance to midsized and larger UK businesses with a group turnover of more than £45m (the upper limit for the existing smaller-business focused CBILS) that are suffering disruption to their cashflow due to lost or deferred revenues during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Following their approval, each lender will be putting in place the operations required to start lending under the scheme and will confirm shortly the dates from which they will be ready to start receiving applications from smaller businesses across the UK.

Keith Morgan, British Business Bank chief executive, said: “Our accredited lenders have seen an incredible demand for COVID-19 business loan schemes since they became available.

“Accrediting these additional finance providers means further support for smaller business customers and continues the British Business Bank’s long-term objective to offer more diverse sources of finance to smaller businesses.”

Government-published statistics show more than 830,000 businesses have to date benefited from almost £35bn in loans and guarantees through schemes delivered by the British Business Bank.

This includes 782,246 Bounce Back Loans worth £23.7bn, 47,650 loans worth more than £9.5bn through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, and £1.5bn through the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme.

The accelerated accreditation process the British Business Bank has put in place for the coronavirus loan schemes means it has been able to more than double the number of CBILS lenders since the scheme’s launch, increasing the number from 41 to 86.

The Bank continues to review applications from a wide range of lender types – from PRA-regulated banks, to platform lenders, debt funds, invoice finance lenders, asset finance lenders and responsible finance lenders.