CONSUMER credit reporting agency Equifax has launched technology to support Commercial Credit Data Sharing (CCDS), part of a scheme implemented by the last government to give lenders a comprehensive picture of the financial health of companies with a turnover of up to £25m.
The CCDS uses data from nine banks and will be able to provide lenders with information on a company’s cash flow, debit and credit turnover, alongside minimum and maximum balances.
This will be of particular benefit to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that rarely apply for finance and have not built up a traditional credit score. It should also make it easier for smaller firms to access funding.
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“CCDS is a game changer for many businesses who have the financial ability to repay a loan but who are currently either denied it or left in limbo when a lack of information leaves banks unable to make a timely decision,” Nic Beishon, head of commercial at Equifax, said.
“The new data overcomes this issue by providing an in-depth view of a business’ financial activity than has ever been accessible before.
“Combined with other industry initiatives, such as Open Banking and the Payments Services Directive 2, CCDS forms the foundation to restructure the SME lending market and help the sector grow. We will be using the data in a variety of ways to create new products for the market, helping lenders better evaluate loan applications.
“Whether a business needs finance to expand, invest in new technology or open a new office, they will now be able to get faster decisions to help make their plans a reality.”
The CCDS comes ahead of new EU General Data Protection Regulation, which is due to come into force from May this year.