The following article is a guest post from Yann Murciano, CEO of Blend Network.
Since November 2016, as part of the Small Business Enterprise and Employment Act 2015, the UK’s nine major banks are legally required to refer those SMEs they refuse to finance to an alternative provider. The last figures published in August 2017 for the first nine months of the scheme were quite unimpressive: less than 3% of small businesses referred to alternative lenders via the bank referral scheme  were funded, that is some £4m in completed funding deals for the first nine months of the scheme. However, despite a sluggish start, we are now seeing an increase in conversion rates. Recent months have showed a significant pick-up in referrals, partly due to promotion of the scheme by the banks themselves. Of course, full effectiveness of the scheme will take time to achieve but if recent trends are something to go by, the trend looks encouraging. Read more “Where do you go when the bank says no?”