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Instant mobile business loans from Barclays to open £34.25bn SME opportunity

A new mobile business loans service from Barclays, which will provide instant capital to SMEs, is set to unlock a £34.25bn economic opportunity for growing companies by 2021.
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According to the bank, the mobile business loans launch comes as 30 per cent of SMEs will not apply for a loan, despite thinking it could help the business.

However, Barclays has found there’s a missed opportunity as 64 per cent of SMEs’ turnover would increase if the right loan was secured. In turn, this could create 194,000 jobs and a £34.25bn economic boost in the next four years.

The instant business loans service runs on the Barclays mobile banking app, and allows SMEs to immediately secure business loans and overdrafts in under an hour, rather than waiting weeks.

This is in keeping with the fact SME loan applicants expect to wait some five weeks for capital to be approved.

But by using mobile, Barclays claims the instant business loans feature means that existing funds are pre-assessed to increase the speed of funding approval and receipt.

“We recognise that some businesses are cautious about applying for a loan, whilst many more simply do not have the time,” said Ian Rand, CEO of Business Banking at Barclays.

“Our new, pre-assessed lending gives customers the ability to see how much they could borrow on their mobile and we can get that money to them more quickly than ever so they can invest in and focus on running their businesses.”

Manufacturing and professional services sectors are thought to experience the largest economic growth over the forecast period, with gains of £1.18bn and £1.11bn respectively.

Despite Barclays’ attempt to make business loans simpler for SMEs, one in five companies feels that Brexit will impact funding plans, with exports citied as the key reason for the doubt. In terms of location, Yorkshire and Humberside business owners are the most concerned about getting applications correct.

Rand added: “Since the EU Referendum our appetite for lending has not diminished and we continue to lend to an SME in the UK every four minutes. We want to help SMEs be confident in their future business plans, including looking at new opportunities to export.

“We are particularly determined to reach out to those businesses who believe lending will be more difficult next year to see where we can help.”

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About Author

Zen Terrelonge

Zen Terrelonge is the deputy editor of Real Business, specialising in media, innovation, technology and the digital sector. A media professional with eight years worth of experience he has worked for both startup and established publications.

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