29th November 2021
British Business Investments, a wholly-owned commercial subsidiary within the British Business Bank group, today announces a £7m commitment to FOLK2FOLK, a specialist marketplace lender for rural and regional smaller businesses.
British Business Investments aims to increase the supply and diversity of finance for smaller businesses across the UK, by boosting the lending capacity of a range of finance providers, including peer to peer and marketplace lenders. Since its establishment in 2014, British Business Investments has committed over £3bn to providers of finance to UK smaller businesses.
FOLK2FOLK specialises in providing finance to smaller businesses within regional UK, helping those who are looking to grow, develop or diversify in the post-pandemic and post-Brexit environment. The company has delivered £488m of investment into regional smaller businesses since 2013.
Judith Hartley, CEO, British Business Investments, said: “British Business Investments is delighted to announce its £7m commitment to FOLK2FOLK. In its recently published Regions and Nations Tracker report, the British Business Bank highlighted the funding issues for regional and rural smaller businesses. This commitment to FOLK2FOLK will help these types of businesses, throughout the UK, to access the finance they need to grow and prosper.”
Louis Mathers, Co-Founder & Director, FOLK2FOLK said: “By focusing on rural and regional businesses, FOLK2FOLK serves an extremely viable but underserved part of the SME landscape. Too often, investments overlook businesses operating outside of large urban areas. We founded FOLK2FOLK on the belief that something needed to be done about this regional disparity in funding. We felt a greater connectedness was needed between investors and regional Britain, and FOLK2FOLK was founded in early 2013 to be a mechanism to enable this. Together with our investors, we are helping to level the playing field for regional businesses.”
Roy Warren, Managing Director, FOLK2FOLK said: “We are rapidly approaching half a billion in lending and the addition of British Business Investments as an institutional investor alongside our existing investor base, expands our funding lines and bolsters our position on the financial frontline of support for regional SMEs. FOLK2FOLK takes a human approach to lending and reviews every case on its own merits. By taking a holistic approach, we’re able to see the bigger picture, and will also consider projection-led proposals.”
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British Business Investments team at MHP Communications
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Notes to Editors
British Business Investments is the trading name of British Business Investments Ltd, a wholly-owned commercial subsidiary of British Business Bank plc, the UK government’s economic development bank. It forms part of the British Business Bank’s commercial arm.
British Business Investments aims to earn a commercial return by investing – through finance providers – in smaller businesses and small mid-caps, pursuing investments on a fully commercial basis without receiving any economic advantage from the government. Find out more at bbinv.co.uk.
British Business Bank plc and its subsidiary entities are not banking institutions and do not operate as such. Neither British Business Bank nor its principal operating subsidiaries are authorised or regulated by the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) or the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). A complete legal structure chart for British Business Bank plc and its subsidiaries can be found on the British Business Bank plc website.
The investment from British Business Investments to FOLK2FOLK does not amount to any endorsement or warranty from British Business Investments, the British Business Bank plc, or the government of the UK.
FOLK2FOLK is a national marketplace lending platform focused on helping business-owners across regional Britain access the finance they need to grow, develop, or diversify; while providing fixed-rate, property-backed investments for retail and institutional investors. A happy by-product of our lending is a form of trickle-down economics which often has a wider human benefit, which we call FOLKONOMICS™.
FOLK2FOLK was born out of a desire to help. Founded in 2013, when the nation was still reeling from the global financial crisis, funding for businesses was drying up and savers were receiving rock-bottom levels of interest. The idea behind FOLK2FOLK was that by providing a local money exchange – based on the concept of ‘fair exchange’ and secured against land and property – ‘good folks’ could help other ‘good folks’. Three years later in 2016, FOLK2FOLK become regulated and fully authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
FOLK2FOLK’s purpose is to create prosperity for Britain’s regions. An inequality of opportunity for prosperity exists across our country and we want to play our part in redressing that imbalance. We’re about people; it’s in our name, and it’s how we believe finance should be. Financial services have become data driven, digitised, abstract, and ultimately disconnected from the people it serves; our vision is to help put humanity back into finance.
FOLK2FOLK Investors receive an interest rate of typically 6.5% on their FOLK2FOLK loan investments and have funded loans totalling £488m since 2013. Tax-free investing is available via FOLK2FOLK’s Innovative Finance ISA (IFISA). Minimum borrowing amount is £100,000. Minimum investment in a FOLK2FOLK loan is £20,000. All loans are secured against UK property or land. Marketplace lending is not a bank/deposit savings product and investors’ capital is at risk. Marketplace lending is not covered by the FSCS.Back