Alternative finance

Banks warm to alternative finance providers

Larger banks have begun to realise the value of collaborating with alternative business lenders, a peer-to-peer (P2P) platform has claimed.

Speaking at Fintech Fortnight on 16th February, Angus Dent, CEO of P2P business lender ArchOver, revealed that some banks were now directing borrowers they cannot serve to alternative finance providers rather than rejecting them outright.

“If you go back two-and-a-half, three years, banks were very much: ‘You’re here to eat our lunch, we’re not going to talk to you,’” Angus explained.

“But that attitude has gone completely around the other way, because what the banks have come to realise is that these smaller organisations – and it’s to do with our size more than anything else – were nimbler.

“We understand their business better and take a bit more time to do that, rather than this sort of behemoth of a machine.”

Angus suggested that by recommending borrowers to platforms such as ArchOver or RateSetter, banks could maintain a relationship with the client rather than risk losing them to a competitor in future.

“So we’re actually a better option for banks, and that’s what we see increasing.

“That realisation has taken some considerable time to filter through to the banks [and] perhaps it hasn’t filtered through completely.

“But increasingly we’re seeing the recommendations from banks saying: ‘Can you help this company? Because at the moment we think it’s a good company, but we can’t get close enough.’”

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