GLI Finance has now partnered with the UK-based small business lending platform Verus360 – which is a Bibby Line Group company. GLI will be providing Verus360 with a £5m loan facility, which carries conversion rights. These rights are expected to equate to a 14% stake in the business down the stretch. The investment itself will be completed by both GLI and the recently launched investment trust “GLI Alternative Finance” – which raised £12.4m through an IPO on the London Stock Exchange in September.
Verus360 is an early-stage platform which launched in April 2015 and which lends to SME off its own balance sheet, rather than via a peer-to-peer structure. The product is a highly transparent revolving credit facility, “customer controlled”, and made available online. Verus360 describes its product as “pay-as-you-use” – meaning that borrowers are only charged interest on the funds that they’ve drawn down (rather than on the full facility). The company intends to serve businesses with annual revenue of between £200k and £8m, and will offer facilities of up to £250k in size.
Tony Morgan, Chief Executive of Verus360, commented:
"We are delighted to have agreed this partnership with GLI, a leading investor in the Alternative Finance industry that is playing a significant part in developing both the sector and innovative products via its platform investee companies. I have no doubt that the wealth of experience that Geoff and his team bring to Verus360 will benefit us as we enter the next stage in our journey to transform the SME finance marketplace for the better."
Geoff Miller, Chief Executive of GLI Finance, also weighed in:
"Verus360 is a great business, using sophisticated technology to interface with borrowers' accounts and diligence them quickly and thoroughly with minimum interference to their business."