Barclays becomes first bank to launch small business mobile lending service

Research suggests £34bn of economic growth could be unlocked by 2021 and 194,000 jobs created

Barclays has announced a new mobile loan app for small businesses – the first bank to launch a mobile service of this kind – in light of new research which suggests £34bn of economic growth could be unlocked by small businesses by 2021 if they had greater access to finance.

The Barclays Mobile Banking app claims to reduce the time it takes to secure a loan or overdraft to under an hour, instead of the average five weeks businesses currently expect the lending process to take.

The research found that 64% of small business’ turnover would increase if they were able to access an appropriate loan, creating around 194,000 jobs in the UK over the next four years.

Despite this, 30% of small and medium businesses have no plans to apply for a loan – though they acknowledge it could benefit their business.

The research also found that 24% of respondents believe uncertainty surrounding Brexit will make it harder to secure a loan in 2017, while 20% think it is already impacting their current or future funding requirements and 12% are unsure if they will be affected.

Barclays CEO of business banking, Ian Rand, said: “Our new, pre-assessed lending gives customers the ability to see how much they could borrow on their mobile and we can get that money to them more quickly than ever so they can invest in and focus on running their businesses.

“We want to help small businesses be confident in their future business plans, including looking at new opportunities to export.”

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