Folk2Folk has said it is still confident of being given the green light to start lending under the coronavirus business interruption loan scheme (CBILS), despite the application deadline looming at the end of the month.
The rural business peer-to-peer lending platform was accredited for CBILS at the start of July and has been preparing for lending under the scheme since then.
It partnered with German debt marketplace Crosslend to raise the institutional funding needed and has passed due diligence from the British Business Bank and a third-party audit, but a spokesperson said the platform still has a small number of precedents to satisfy.
Read more: Mixed views on the future of CBILS
“We’re still optimistic we’re going to progress with CBILS,” a spokesperson from Folk2Folk said.
“We spoke to the British Business Bank and hopefully we should soon receive the green light to start lending under the scheme.
“We’re doing everything we can to start lending under CBILS and are optimistic we will be given the go-ahead to do so, but we aren’t offering any guarantees.
“We’re transparent to customers, telling them to send applications to us by the end of September, but that we can’t guarantee to lend to them, so not to rely on us as their only source at this stage until we’re ready to start CBILS lending.
“We’ve seen a steady level of interest for CBILS loans, rather than a sudden rush with the deadline approaching, but there’s still time. If everything is in place, we expect to see a rise then.”
Folk2Folk highlighted that being accredited for approval under CBILS is not the same as being ready to lend, as lenders still need to satisfy certain conditions after becoming accredited.
“This has been a time-consuming process, but we understand these steps are necessary to protect the taxpayer and it’s right for a high level of regulation to be in place,” the spokesperson said.
“We’re working hard to satisfy the remaining British Business Bank conditions precedent before we’re able to begin lending and we remain steadfast in our commitment to do all we can to help deliver vital CBILS loans to businesses before the end of November.“
This follows calls from Folk2Folk last month for CBILS to be extended beyond its application deadline of 30 September.