Chester-based Oxbury is gearing to up launch later this year.
A new bank aimed at tackling the lack of lending for farmers has received a banking licence and has launched a new funding round ahead of its launch later this year.
Chester-based Oxbury, which will launch later in 2020, will offer lending products designed for British farmers as well as savings accounts for businesses and the public.
Oxbury is betting that it will be the go-to banking provider for farmers, understanding the needs of farmers, be it as small business owners, entrepreneurs, vets and environmental managers.
While traditional banks treat farmers like small businesses, Oxbury will lend according to specialist cash flow needs which often fluctuate with the seasons.
The launch of the bank comes amid concern that financial support for farmers is under threat due to Brexit and the possible loss of EU funds.
A further selling point is that Oxbury will look to encourage more sustainable farming.
The launch of Oxbury follows a report from the RSA Food, Farming & Countryside Commission last year calling for a dedicated bank to help farmers adapt in response to environmental concerns.
Oxbury was set up by James Farrar, who set up ClearBank in 2015, and Nick Evans, who launched an agricultural tech company called Adaptris which was sold at FTSE 100 analytics group Relx in 2015.
Board members include Tim Fitzpatrick, a former Bank of England adviser, and Huw Morgan, an executive previously with HSBC.
Oxbury’s CEO and co-founder Farrar said: “This is an important milestone in bringing to market the only UK based bank that has its thinking, expertise and empathy exclusively focussed on the agricultural market and the needs of British farmers."
Oxbury’s Managing Director and co-founder, Nick Evans added: “Oxbury is a new specialist bank founded by the agricultural sector for the sector and is designed to work in partnership with long-established agribusinesses that farmers know and trust.”
“This trust is essential at a time of great change and opportunity in British agriculture that is being embraced by forward thinking farmers to secure the prosperity of British farms in a sustainable way."
Oxbury is backed by farming investors, headed up by crop protection company Hutchinsons, US commodities giant Cargilll and Frontier Agriculture, a grain supplier unit established by Associated British Foods (ABF).