Funding Circle has reported a “significant increase” in searches for business loans since the start of last week amid the coronavirus pandemic, the peer-to-peer lender has revealed.
It comes as small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) clamour for financial support to get through the uncertainty caused by the coronavirus outbreak.
The platform has told potential borrowers it is still open for businesses and existing borrowers have been told to get in touch if they have been affected by the outbreak and are struggling to repay their loans.
“This is a fast-moving situation and we are working hard to support businesses that have been affected by coronavirus and deliver resilient returns to investors,” a spokesperson for Funding Circle said.
“Search volume for small business loans is up 150 per cent since the beginning of last week and we’ve seen a significant increase in applications to the site.
“We have therefore increased capacity in our front-line teams and for businesses that have been affected by coronavirus, there are a range of potential options we can explore.”
The platform has also reassured investors that protecting returns is a priority.
“We have already made changes to our risk models and we’ll continue to closely monitor our credit policies and make further adjustments where necessary to protect your returns,” the listed lender said in a blog post.
“We will provide further information on the work we have done to protect your returns in the coming days.”