Innovative lending is key for small firms, says CBI

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The CBI is launching a guide to alternative finance as it calls on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to consider the full range of options available to help them grow.

The business organisation said firms should consider using asset-based lending, equity investment or peer-to-peer lending, among other options.

The group highlighted research showing that high-growth medium-sized businesses could be worth up to an additional £20 billion to the economy by 2020.

The report by GE Capital shows that UK SMEs plan to spend £51bn over the next 12 months, but will require the right funding to realise their potential.

Katja Hall, chief policy director at the CBI, said: “Banks will continue to be a vital source of finance but we’re encouraging growing firms to open their eyes to the broad range of funding options on the market.”

The guide comes as Royal Bank of Scotland backed a secondary buy-out of invoice finance provider Positive Cashflow Finance with a £22 million funding line.

The deal gives directors a majority share of the business they founded five and a half years ago.