If you're a business owner but haven't yet heard of the challenger banks, you could be missing a trick when it comes to funding. Metro Bank is one of the new arrivals on the banking scene that are working hard to attract customers away from the established Big 4 – that's Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds Bank and Natwest.
The challengers, which also include Tesco Bank, Aldermore, State Bank of India and Virgin Money, are taking on the big banking brands by launching new services and offering deals for both consumer and businesses.
Metro Bank business banking
The self-labelled “entrepreneur’s bank”, Metro offers banking services and products to startups and established companies. It offers a business bank account for firms with a turnover of up to £2 million includes 24/7 phone banking, fast account opening and free European transactions.
Metro Bank also has a commercial bank account, but that's for bigger or more complex businesses. But with this account, customers get access to a relationship team, tailored commercial services and an overdraft if you need one.
Metro Bank business loans
Metro offers a small business loan on a fixed-rate basis, offering between £2,000 and £25,000. There’s no arrangement fee for this particular loan, and the repayment term varies. There’s also a business loan for SMEs wanting to borrow more than £25,000 available as a fixed or variable rate, but this impacts the length of your repayment term for up to 15 years.
You might need to provide security for a Metro bank business loan, such as your home if you own it. Businesses can also apply for a credit card for lower levels of borrowing.
Other altfi providers
Metro Bank is one of the challenger banks, which are giving the older banks a run for their money (and their customers). For instance, Metro promises to deliver “prompt” lending decisions where bigger banks tend to take a while to process applications, which can impact SMEs that need money quickly to keep business ticking over.
Fleximize is one of the new arrivals on the lending market – it's now a leading altfi lender offering flexible loans to SMEs around the UK. There are also options including peer-to-peer lenders, pension-led funding and invoice funding. The Ultimate Guide to Business Funding can point you in the right direction.