Banking Competition Remedies Ltd (BCR) Publishes Progress Updates on Public Commitments from Pool E Capability and Innovation Fund Recipients

  • Banking
  • 30.07.2021 11:00 am

The Board of Banking Competition Remedies Ltd (BCR) today publishes progress updates for Pool E recipients, providing a summary of performance against their public commitments to the period 31st May 2021.

The public commitment updates this reporting period indicate that the awardees are now advanced in deploying the CIF spend and making significant progress in their deliverables, developing valuable propositions to UK SMEs. While a small number will not see the impact they had hoped for in respect of SME take up in the short term, as the market returns to normal, their propositions will be a strong value add to UK SMEs. BCR has now held review meetings with all awardees and four (Virgin Money UK PLC, Ebury Partners Limited, MarketFinance Limited and ezbob Ltd) have submitted updated business cases which is permitted under the CIF Agreement and subject to approval by the BCR Board. Three of these have resulted in changes to public commitments and Ebury Partners Limited has returned funds of £7.5m as highlighted in BCR’s press release last week which can be found here. Awardees progress against public commitments made can be found here 

Aidene Walsh, CIF Executive Director, said: “Pool E awardees are starting to make important inroads in delivering on their public commitments. A number have improved their brand awareness whether through partnerships with the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), Enterprise Nation or through their own marketing efforts and they are seeing the benefits in increased SME engagement. As is to be expected, the enduring pandemic with its impact on SMEs and, in some cases, Financial Institution partner priorities has caused a couple of awardees to reprioritise or adapt their plans. In approving updated business cases and accepting any returned funds, BCR is confident that the awardees continue to have the offering and ability to make a meaningful difference in the provision of financial services to UK SMEs.”

A summary of performance against awardees public commitments can be found in the notes to editors, with links to the full updates provided above:

Pool E third quarter update

•       Virgin Money UK PLC public commitment progress update

•       ClearBank Ltd public commitment progress update

•       Ebury Partners Limited public commitment progress update

•       MarketFinance Limited public commitment progress update

•       Funding Xchange Ltd public commitment progress update

•       Codat Limited public commitment progress update

•       ezbob Ltd public commitment progress update

•       Fractal Labs Ltd public commitment progress update

•       Previse Ltd public commitment progress update

The next progress updates for Pool E awardees will be in October 2021. Pool A, B, C and D awardees will provide their next reporting update in August 2021. For more details on how BCR monitors CIF awardees see here.

Pool F: new funding round under the CIF scheme

BCR has £12.5m CIF funding available (referred to as ‘Pool F’) for distribution under the CIF scheme to support A, B and C eligible bodies in providing competition in financial services to UK SMEs. The consultation process is now running and the letter can be found here. Further details on Pool F can be found here.

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