The world’s leading peer-to-business lender pioneered the strategy of local council lending arrangements – an approach that has been subsequently mimicked by a number of providers. Herefordshire becomes the 11th local council to start lending via the Funding Circle platform. £50k initially will be distributed to local businesses via the Funding Circle marketplace, an amount which could increase depending on demand.
From the council’s perspective, the Funding Circle platform provides a supremely efficient medium for supporting local enterprises – which should serve to stimulate improved economic growth and employment rates in the area. Councillor Tony Johnson, leader of Herefordshire Council, weighed in:
“This scheme will help local business grow, as money can be obtained quicker and at competitive rates. We are committed to supporting local business, to grow jobs and wages in the authority as a priority. This is a prudent investment which will deliver a high impact to local businesses.”
Alignment with local and national governmental infrastructure is a clear area of focus for Funding Circle. The £50k commitment isn’t a great deal of money in the context of the near £490m of cumulative lending transacted via the platform, but it’s not really about the money (for now at least). Herefordshire is just one eleventh of an increasingly extensive regional network – one which should prove a useful tool in spreading the Funding Circle word to regions where peer-to-peer lending in general has yet to take hold.
Natasha Jones, Communications Manager at Funding Circle, explained:
“Funding Circle investors have lent over £73 million to small businesses in the Midlands in the last four years alone. This partnership with Herefordshire Council will allow us to help even more of the businesses across the county. Herefordshire is the eleventh council to use the Funding Circle marketplace to boost lending. We strongly believe this network will evolve to create a blueprint for an equivalent 21st century regional banking network.”