News Alternative Lending

ThinCats flies past £1bn funding milestone, fuelled by the pandemic

With a recent £160m equity injection from Wafra Capital, ThinCats hopes to lend out a further £2bn to the UK’s SMEs.

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Amany Attia/ThinCats

Alternative lender ThinCats has provided more than £1bn in lending to UK businesses thanks to record lending in 2020.

ThinCats’ surpassed its milestone thanks to the fintech’s involvement in the government-backed Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) and heightened demand for SME loans in general throughout the last year, as well as strong growth in the first half of 2021 too. 

“Mid-sized SMEs have been underserved in terms of funding options for too long, so we are delighted to be providing a genuine alternative,” Amany Attia, CEO of ThinCats, said.

“Our model of creating bespoke funding solutions by combining the latest in data analytics with traditional lending at a local level has been well received by the professional advisor community and we thank them for their continued support.”

Currently, 60 per cent of ThinCats’ loans are to businesses outside of London and the South East, with just under three quarters (74 per cent) of those loans structured as cash flow loans.

Already looking to the next milestone, ThinCats hopes to lend out a further £2bn to UK businesses thanks to a £160m strategic investment from Wafra Capital Partners.

“Whilst lending £1 billion is a significant milestone, the recent investment from Wafra Capital Partners will enable us to substantially accelerate the number of businesses we can support in the future. Mid-sized businesses recognise the need to invest as the economy picks up again and we look forward to supporting many more with their growth ambitions,” Attia added.

The alternative lender, which started its life as a peer-to-peer lender, lending between £1m and £15m to SMEs, has deployed more than £1bn to UK SMEs since it launched in 2011. 

Since its launch in 2011, ThinCats has continued to make a dent in the alternative lending sector.

It was acquired by ESF Capital in December 2015, which bought out three-quarters of the business with its boss Jon Mould taking over as CEO.

In the past three years or so, its business has further evolved following the shutting of its retail platform and the hiring of ex Lehman Brothers securitisation chief Amany Attia as its CEO.

Over the past three years, the alternative lender has seen its loan book increase tenfold to £500m with £289m originated in 2020.

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