UK-based business lender B-North is looking to raise £1,750,000 ($2.3 million) through an equity crowdfunding campaign on Crowdcube, offering 10.94 percent in equity at a £14,247,942 ($18.7 million) pre-money valuation.
“B-North wants to disrupt the £154 billion UK business lending market. The majority of SME lending is via the big High Street banks and our experience shows they often use outdated ‘legacy’ systems, rigid lending policies, and faceless, centralized processing centers. SMEs can have to jump through hoops and face an impersonal ‘computer says no’ approach, and our experience shows that it can take more than four months before they get their cash, so their development plans may have to be put on hold,” the company stated in published reports.
Founded in 2018, B-North is looking to obtain its banking license in the first quarter of 2020. In September, the company announced that it was working with Banking-as-a-Service firm Mambu and cloud-based loan and deposit origination platform provider nCino to power its small business lending and banking operations. Mambu and nCino will themselves collaborate directly to integrate each other’s services for B-North, which the startup has called “a market first.”
The partnerships will enable B-North to accelerate loan processing for small business customers, as well as allow the bank to embrace flexible infrastructure to “future-proof” its operations.
“This three-way relationship neatly highlights our FinTech-enabled model,” commented B-North Co-founder and CEO Jonathan Thompson in a statement. “B-North unlocks real benefits by harnessing the best technologies and combining them with our unique regional origination approach.
“We aim to facilitate SME lending, with market-leading technology and lead times, and to give our customers the best of the traditional and the modern,” he added. “We look forward to building our relationship with Mambu and nCino to deliver maximum benefit to our future customers.”
So far, its Crowdcube campaign has raised more than £1.5 million ($1.97 million), attracting new investors through the Growth Capital Ventures platform. The campaign is set to close at the end of December.