NatWest launches digital small business working capital product

By Roger Baird on Friday 5 July 2019

Alternative Lending

The high street bank will go head-to-head with British digital lender MarketInvoice and US payments giant PayPal.

NatWest launches digital small business working capital product
Image source: Anamul Rezwan at Pexels

NatWest has launched a digital working capital loans product aimed at small businesses that will compete against Britain’s MarketInvoice and PayPal in the US.

The high street bank said its Rapid Cash service offers loans of between £25,000 and £300,000, with a credit limit based on a firm’s unpaid invoices.

It adds the online application process can be approved within a day, with funds credited to customer accounts a few hours later.

NatWest, describes the product as an alternative business overdraft, with firms having a choice of how much to borrow and for how long. Once cash is repaid, companies can draw down against the line of credit again, up to their approved limit.


Landmark deal

The new service, developed with Australian fintech lender Waddle Loans, is available to all NatWest business account holders after undergoing pilot testing since the start of the year.

The bank adds it plans to roll out the product to all UK firms “in the coming weeks”.

NatWest’s new service will go head-to-head against fintech MarketInvoice, which cut a landmark deal with Barclays last August to provide finance for small firms to borrow against unpaid invoices.


Business overdraft

It will also compete against US payments giant PayPal’s Working Capital lending unit, which in May, said it has lent over $10bn to 225,000 small businesses in the US, UK, Australia, Germany, and Mexico since 2013, as the group continues to expand into new financial service areas.

NatWest managing director head of sales, specialist businesses & business banking Paul Thwaite, said: “This is a product which we have built to provide an alternative to a conventional business overdraft. By continuing to enhance the value, speed and choice of the services we offer, we’re aiming to ensure that customers can remain focused on what matters - growing their businesses”.

Earlier this week, NatWest launched a video calls service that will put small business customers in touch with the bank’s business advisors. The bank said the service allows busy business customers to arrange a video call using a mobile device, tablet or PC. 

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