Irish peer-to-peer lending platform Linked Finance has called on Ireland’s government to extend the country’s €2bn (£1.83bn) credit guarantee scheme to P2P and other non-bank lenders.
In an echo of the early weeks of the UK’s coronavirus loan scheme rollout, alternative lenders in Ireland have been critical of the decision to initially make the SME credit guarantee scheme available to banks.
“The non-bank sector has to play a critical role in the deployment of these supports,” said Niall Dorrian, chief executive of Linked Finance.
“The UK has approved 96 finance providers to help emergency lending, emergency funding. We cannot rely on three banks to do that and it would be foolhardy to do so.”
The Irish government has pledged €2bn to help small- and medium-sized enterprises (SME) access funding during the pandemic. The government will guarantee 80 per cent of each loan offered by banks to business owners.
However, it is expected that the majority of these loans will be granted via banks, with alternative lenders being overlooked.
Dublin-based business lender Linked Finance has offered payment breaks and deferred start loans to its SME borrowers since the pandemic began.