Woodford and co plug Atom Bank’s £50m funding hole

By Oliver Smith on 22nd July 2019

Challenger Banks

Funding comes following BBVA’s decision not to acquire the loss-making lender in April.

Woodford and co plug Atom Bank’s £50m funding hole
Image source: Mark Mullen/Atom Bank.

Digital player Atom Bank has raised £50m from its existing investors including BBVA, Toscafund and Woodford Patient Capital Trust.

The funding comes after its largest shareholder BBVA, with 39% of the equity in the business, decided not to exercise its option in April to acquire the company outright.

The Times reported that Neil Woodford—under fire following the closure of his Equity Income fund last month—had committed £10m to Atom Bank’s latest funding.

Atom Bank offers mortgages, fixed savings accounts and business loans, all of which can be managed and monitored via its smartphone app.

In recent weeks reports have suggested that Atom slowed or stopped some of its lending in response to intense competition in the mortgage market.

Atom Bank CEO Mark Mullen told City A.M. this morning that such reports were “concerning” and that the company actually increased lending 76% in the last year.

None of that helped the business escape a loss of £53m for its 2017-18 financial year, on deposits of £1.8bn and loans of £2.4bn.

In a statement today Mullen addressed the new funding, saying: "We’re growing our team here in the North East and will add 50 new roles this year to help us expand the range of products and services we offer, starting with Instant Access savings in the autumn.” 

“More than ever we are convinced of the importance of Atom’s role to drive positive change in UK banking.”

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