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eBay Continues Advance Into Financial Services With Launch of CEBS Programme To Support SMEs

eBay UK has recently announced its latest finance programme – Capital for eBay Business Sellers (CEBS). The intention of the new programme is to offer support to small businesses by providing vital access to finance; during a period when entrepreneurs and start-ups across the country face a growing cashflow crisis as a result of the pandemic.

The CEBS programme will offer a variety of financing products to the vast majority of the 300,000 small and medium-sized businesses that sell to the 29 million active monthly buyers via the UK platform, and stands as eBay’s biggest recorded push into the provision of financial services to date; ever since it started to roll out its management of payments scheme last year.

The launch of CEBS follows the release of new research from eBay UK, which highlighted the concerning figure that 31% of the UK’s 5.9 million small businesses face the threat of liquidation within a month if adequate financing is not sourced.

The research also found that 40% of small businesses have been denied a loan from a bank, whilst 31% have been turned down for a loan by the government. When asked specifically about Covid loans, 44% said they had not received any form of access to Covid financial support within the past 12 months.

YouLend became the first out of three financing platforms to be announced as part of the CEBS programme, giving eBay business sellers access to funding between £500 and £1 million, which can then be repaid directly from their sales. With eBay already having access to seller trading history and performance, eligible sellers only need to complete a simple application form, receiving offers in minutes; with more than 90% of sellers receiving funds the very same day they accept an offer.

This financing solution helps small businesses overcome the many challenges that have left them financially excluded from high street bank loans and Covid support schemes. Lengthy application forms, years of trading history, high-interest rates and high-risk payment structures are just some of the pain points that CEBS aims to remove for business sellers in desperate need of finance.

It also makes it possible for thousands of entrepreneurs and start-ups that have sprung up on eBay UK throughout the pandemic to access funding to grow and succeed.

Hundreds of eBay businesses have already benefited from CEBS, with two further financing partners set to be announced in the coming weeks.

The launch of the CEBS programme is the next step in eBay UK’s ongoing commitment to supporting entrepreneurs and small businesses, delivering economic opportunity and making it easier to set up, grow and scale. It follows a number of initiatives launched in the past year to help businesses and individuals set up ventures or open new revenue streams online, reducing or removing eBay’s fees through programmes like Pay As You Grow and Free Online Shop Window.

Murray Lambell, General Manager, eBay UK
Murray Lambell, General Manager, eBay UK

“Small businesses make up 99% of all UK businesses, yet they have been financially excluded from traditional lenders and let down by Covid support schemes. That’s led to a serious under-investment, leaving many at risk of going under while others are prevented from reaching their full potential,” comments Murray Lambell, General Manager, eBay UK.

“Capital for eBay Business Sellers is intended to help plug this gap, giving small businesses quick access to a range of financing options. With 300,000 UK small businesses trading on eBay, this proposition will help them reinvest, protect jobs, and succeed, even as the government’s support schemes dry up.”

Commenting on the experience of CEBS, Stan Weekes, founder of eBay business SW Trading Ltd said “The online application took about 5 minutes. After accepting the 6 figure offer, we received the funds the very same day. Greater access to financing will significantly help us to grow and bounce back after what has been a tough year for so many small businesses.”

Jakob Pethick, CCO of YouLend added “Our focus is on giving leading e-commerce platforms, tech companies and payment service providers the ability to offer their customers rapid funding through our technology platform. We’re delighted to partner with eBay UK to support their business sellers thrive and grow.”


  • Tyler is a fintech journalist with specific interests in online banking and emerging AI technologies. He began his career writing with a plethora of national and international publications.

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