FUNDING Circle’s US division has unveiled a strategic partnership with Intrust Bank, a regional lender based in Kansas.
The peer-to-peer business finance provider, which has lent out more than $5bn (£3.69bn) globally, said on Thursday that the partnership will be rolled out in various stages.
The initial phase will consist of Intrust funding US small business loans originated through Funding Circle’s platform.
The later stages will include increased investment, with a view to a multi-year funding programme, and joint digital and direct marketing campaigns.
Intrust has assets of nearly $5bn and 46 banking branches across the US states of Kansas, Oklahoma and Arkansas.
“Every dollar invested through our platform has a ripple effect in cities and towns across America, by enabling Main Street small businesses to grow, hire and expand,” said Sam Hodges, co-founder and US managing director of Funding Circle.
“This makes Funding Circle an ideal investment opportunity for banks such as Intrust focused on bringing tangible impact to the communities they serve, and we look forward to further growing our platform with support from additional institutional partners here and abroad.”
“We are excited to partner with Funding Circle to enhance our ability to serve small business customers,” said Brian Heinrichs, chief financial officer of Intrust Bank.
“As a regional bank, we understand that small businesses are the lifeblood of our communities and the nation’s economy. Funding Circle’s customer-focused philosophy and technology platform are an ideal fit for Intrust.”
Funding Circle, which launched in the UK in 2010, has now originated loans for more than 40,000 businesses globally.
Approximately 10 per cent of investor money now comes from government sources, including the British Business Bank, European Investment Bank, Germany’s KfW and local councils across the UK.
The business has raised £250m in equity capital from the same investors that backed Facebook, Twitter and Airbnb.
In March, impact investor Community Investment Management pledged to invest an extra $100m into Funding Circle loans in the US, as part of an ongoing agreement between the two firms.
Funding Circle is reportedly getting ready to float on the London Stock Exchange, with some investors believing the company could be worth as much as £2bn.