£23 million boost for British businesses through referral scheme

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British businesses are getting more financing to help them expand and create new jobs thanks to government support, new figures show today.

Since its creation in 2016, the Bank Referral Scheme (BRS) has helped hundreds of small and medium-sized businesses to access finance after they were turned down by their bank. New figures out today show that over the past 12 months, 889 businesses have raised more than £23 million through the Scheme, which matches them with alternative sources of finance such as revolving credit and asset finance. This is a significant increase on the previous year and the initiative, introduced four years ago, has now raised £56 million for businesses all over the UK.

The Economic Secretary to the Treasury, John Glen, said:

It’s great to see businesses across the UK getting the investment they need to protect jobs and grow. By matching small businesses with alternative finance providers, this important scheme has delivered £23m in funding since July 2019.

The scheme was launched in November 2016 in response to evidence which suggested that after being turned down for a loan by their bank, small and medium-sized businesses rarely sought other options for financing.

It requires nine of Britain’s biggest banks to pass on the details of businesses they have turned down for loans to online credit brokers. These platforms are, in turn, required to share their details, in anonymous form, with alternative finance providers, helping to facilitate a conversation between the business and any provider who expresses an interest in supplying finance to them.

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