• The British Business Bank will lend £10m through UK’s largest peer-to-peer lender
  • Peer-to-peer lending a vital source of funding for Britain’s sole traders and business owners
  • With RateSetter, the loan is to the individual rather than the business – resulting in quicker access to funds

The British Business Bank is to start lending through RateSetter, the UK’s largest peer-to-peer (P2P) lender by monthly volume.

The British Business Bank is a new Government-owned financial institution set up with the goal of making financial markets work better for small businesses (

It will target its lending exclusively at RateSetter’s business loans: individuals, sole traders or partnerships borrowing for business purposes. This has gradually and organically become a growing part of RateSetter’s monthly loan demand.

The Bank has committed to lend £10m through RateSetter. It will lend 40% of any qualifying loan until the first £4m has been lent after which this figure will move to 20% for the remaining £6m, thus facilitating £40m of lending.

The British Business Bank will start lending through RateSetter from Monday, 21July. With RateSetter, the loan is to the individual rather than the business. It is the faster way of getting a cost effective cash injection into a business, giving access to funds within a couple of days rather than weeks.

Rhydian Lewis, CEO and Founder of RateSetter, said:

“We have been talking to the British Business Bank for over 18 months. The Bank does thorough due diligence before making any commitment and we, too, wanted to make sure we were ready – as a business and as a marketplace.”

“Over the last year we have seen more and more sole traders and business owners come to RateSetter to borrow and this is the lending that the Bank wishes to support. We are getting to the parts of the economy that others aren’t.”

“I believe in the power of government to catalyse change. The government is not propping up peer-to-peer lending or underwriting any loans; it is lending, on commercial terms, to stimulate lending to the real economy and to catalyse the emergence of peer-to-peer lending as a competitive force in finance.”

“This is welcome – whilst other national governments have dragged their feet (or worse), the UK has recognised the innovation and potential of peer-to-peer lending. It is sending a message to borrowers that there are now alternatives.”

In June 2014, RateSetter was the largest P2P platform in the UK in terms of monthly volume (£23m) It is also the UK’s fastest growing major P2P lender with growth of 219% in 2013 in comparison to 107% for the sector overall.

Business owners who have benefitted from peer-to-peer lending:

Marion Hamilton, 53, owner of Solway Physiotherapy Clinic in Dumfries borrowed £24k through RateSetter to expand her business:

 “It was actually my bank manager who advised that I look to alternative finance to expand my business. I was grateful for his honesty, and it turned out to be a great tip.”

 “I was delighted with the level of service I received at RateSetter – it was fast, efficient and the terms on offer matched my needs perfectly. Peer-to-peer is offering Britain’s businesses a real alternative.”

Alex Corbett, 36, Founder of Pizzarova, used a £60k RateSetter loan to set up his innovative business:

“Following a series of disappointing conversations with the banks, who would only offer loans on unfavourable terms, I turned to alternative finance.”

“The process was much easier with RateSetter; less intrusive and I didn’t feel stripped bare. Importantly, it was very customer focussed.”

“I would advise any entrepreneurs and start-ups who are struggling with the banks to explore peer-to-peer lending as an alternative.”

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