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Irish P2P lender smashes €150m lending milestone as appetite for SME loans continues

Included in the €150m dished out to Irish SMEs, Linked Finance has provided over €7m worth of government-backed loans to Covid-19-hit SMEs.

a man in a suit smiling

Niall O'Grady/Linked Finance

As small and medium businesses continue to be hardest hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, alternative lenders remain an invaluable crutch.

Thanks to a bumper year, Linked Finance has surpassed €150m dished out to more than 2,700 SMEs.

The Irish peer-to-peer lender flew past the milestone after issuing €9.6m in loans in the first quarter of 2021, a four per cent increase on the year before. 

“Reaching the milestone of €150m shows the continuing migration there is by SMEs to the fast and efficient approach that alternative fintech lenders like Linked Finance can offer,” Niall O’Grady, CEO of Linked Finance, said.

“It is a reassuring sign of the drive and ambition of Irish SMEs to see them investing in their operations with the aim of rapidly recovering as the country starts to emerge from the pandemic.”

At the start of the year, Linked Finance became the first non-bank lender to offer loans through the Irish Government-back loan scheme, the Covid-19 Credit Guarantee Scheme (CCGS).

Linked Finance has already supplied €7m worth of loans to Irish SMEs through the government-backed programme.

Like its British counterparts, the Bounce Back Loans (BBLS) and Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), the CCGS is designed to provide SMEs with low-cost working capital.

Under the government-backed scheme, Linked Finance’s SME customers can borrow up to €250,000 as quickly as 24 hours after first receiving their documents.

As well as becoming the first alternative lender to be added to the CCGS, Linked Finance appointed a new CEO earlier this year after founding CEO Niall Dorrian stepped down.

Niall O’Grady took over the role in early February this year after Dorrian moved aside, with the former CEO stepping into a non-executive director role at the alternative lender.

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