Risk & Economy » Regulation » Santander to refer SME loan requests to P2P lender

A GROUNDBREAKING FINANCE DEAL has been reached that will see Santander refer clients onto online lending marketplace Funding Circle.

The partnership will see the Big Six bank refer small business customers onto Funding Circle. Where Funding Circle is better placed to help, referrals will take place on Santander’s website and in letters to customers.

Funding Circle will flag up Santander to customers that need day-to-day relationship banking support or other services. The peer-to-peer lender has lent £290m to more than 5,000 businesses.

Ana Botin, CEO of Santander UK, said: “SMEs need access to multiple sources of finance, and Santander’s partnership with Funding Circle is a good example of how traditional and alternative finance can work together to help the nation’s SMEs prosper. Peer-to-peer financing is also a useful way to introduce people to the concept of investing in entrepreneurs; an important element in a healthy enterprise economy.”

Samir Desai, CEO and co-founder of Funding Circle said that Santander “have created a blueprint for other banks to follow”.