News Briefing - Crowdfunding, SME And Alternative Finance

a rowing team with oars on the same side of the boat

1. UK - SMEs 


Crowdfundinsider reports: 

“The British Business Bank this week announced the Recovery Loan Scheme has passed a significant milestone, with 76 accredited lenders having offered more than £1bn to smaller UK businesses. Of the £1.06 billion of funding offered through 6,190 facilities so far, £822.8m has been drawn down through 5,137 facilities. 

The Recovery Loans Scheme launched in April 2021 and is currently scheduled to run until Dec. 31. The scheme supports borrowing of up to £10m for individual businesses and up to £30m across a group, with funds available for any legitimate business purpose, including managing cashflow, growth and investment. It is designed to appeal to businesses that can afford to take out additional finance for these purposes.” 


2. UK - FinTech 

Altfi reports: 

“Digital savings and investment platform Chip has launched new savings accounts with FSCS protection through a banking-as-a-service deal with ClearBank. 

Through ClearBank’s banking-as-a-service (BaaS) proposition, Chip savings accounts are now covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) on deposits up to £85,000 and connected to Faster Payments for real-time withdrawals. 

Clearbank is a cloud-based clearing bank, and the first new clearing bank entity over 250 years. It partners with other fintechs and banks with its clearing services accessible via an API.  It was founded by serial entrepreneur Nick Ogden in 2017 and its current CEO is Charles McManus. 


3. US – FinTech 

Crowfundinsider reportsreports: 

“Earlier this month, John Berlau, a Senior Fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), wrote an article discussing the controversial $3.5 trillion social spending bill that is currently stuck in the US Senate due to intraparty disagreements. While initially pitched as “infrastructure” or “reconciliation” the legislation is more of an omnibus wish list derived from partisan politics. But buried in the language of the bill is a section that may impact investment crowdfunding as it seeks to effectively ban retirement accounts from investing in private securities.” 


4. International – FinTech 

Finextra reports: 

“SETL is open sourcing its blockchain toolkit Portl in an effort to speed up adoption of distributed ledger technology by banks who have been wary of trusting their core ledger to a proprietary platform. 

Portl provides a permissioned toolset for financial institutions to build applications that interoperate between existing infrastructures and a range of enterprise ledger technologies including Corda, Besu, Fabric, DAML and SETL's own ledger.

Despite all the hype, banks and financial institutions are struggling to bring blockchain applications into profitable production. SETL which emerged from administration in May last year after filing for insolvency, is hoping that a move to open source will help to convince clients to make the leap to live application.” 


5. International – FinTech 


The Fintech Times reports: 


“A survey commissioned by WisdomTree, the exchange-traded fund (‘ETF’) and exchange-traded product (‘ETP’) sponsor, has revealed that over eight in 10 (83%) of European advisers have spoken to their clients about investing in cryptocurrencies, with almost a third of clients (32%) intending to step outside of their adviser relationship to allocate to the asset class. 

The survey, conducted by CoreData Research, an independent research agency, polled 600 professional investors across Europe, ranging from wholesale financial advisory firms to wealth managers and family offices. The investors surveyed are responsible for approximately €400billion in assets under management. 

While the regulatory landscape may create a challenging environment for European advisers and their clients, regulation is not currently seen as the biggest barrier to making allocations. 33% of European advisers said volatility is the most common reason they have not made allocations to cryptocurrencies in a professional capacity. The next two most common barriers for European advisers are the lack of intrinsic value (31%) and lack of regulation (30%), both pinpointed as big barriers for allocating capital to cryptocurrencies. 

Awareness of and investment into digital assets have been growing in recent years, with many professional investors now aware of the role they can play in a portfolio. Over a third (41%) of European advisers believe they can be used for diversification as an uncorrelated asset in portfolios. An allocation to cryptocurrency of 1-2% was deemed appropriate by a third (34%) of European financial advisers.”