A record year for the responsible finance industry
Responsible finance providers (formerly known as CDFIs) lent over £250 million in 2015, injecting nearly £600 million pounds into the UK economy. New research from the industry trade body, Responsible Finance, shows that demand for responsible finance grew by 30% in the last year, and lenders responded by helping more people and businesses than ever access fair and affordable finance. This activity created 10,000 new businesses and 25,000 jobs, and ensured over 45,000 people had access to ethical loans as an alternative to high interest payday loans.
Ben Hughes, Chief Executive of Responsible Finance said:
“As “the voice of the responsible finance industry working to increase access to fair finance” it is incumbent on us to find ways of building momentum – and of really making the public policy case. Whilst I think there’s little doubting Responsible Finance brand is fresh, clear and compelling, time will be the judge of the lasting impact we hope to achieve.”
“Continuation of the sector’s impressive growth trajectory would result in a further £1.9 billion being lent by 2020, supporting 75,000 more businesses and helping 360,000 more people avoid high interest lenders. Put another way, this equates to £14 billion of economic value added during this time.”
“Whilst this is certainly achievable, based on recent performance, it requires urgent political backing for the only dedicated gap filling part of the financial services industry.”
‘Responsible Finance 2015’ also maps responsible lending against bank lending, and clearly shows how the sector is serving the neighbourhoods where banks aren’t lending. These are also the UK’s most deprived areas.
The maps can be seen here.
‘Responsible Finance 2015’ can be downloaded here.