The stability of a bank and the agility and technology of a fintech have been married together in the newly-established digital bank FIBR; which aims to serve European SMEs.
Accounting for over 99% of Europe’s businesses, SMEs are set to play a crucial role in both economic recovery and job creation post-pandemic. Historically this has been an underserved market when it comes to accessing fast and fair finance. Ensuring these businesses are well funded is central to FIBR’s mission and by which FIBR will play its part to enable economic recovery following the pandemic.
FIBR, which is headquartered in the Netherlands, offers lending schemes to SMEs throughout Europe through their technology platform; bringing funding to SMEs through local lenders such as Creditshelf; although they’ve reported having several lenders in the process of onboarding.
FIBR also lends directly to SMEs in Europe, in the form of secured business loans and working capital loans. In its pre-launch phase, FIBR has lent over €20 million of loans to over 175 SMEs in the UK and Netherlands enabling them to fund their growth.
In the near future, the FIBR platform intends to offer a fully integrated suite of modular components that lenders can leverage to accelerate their growth, such as payments, loan administration, and funding as a service.
FIBR is fueled by savers allowing communities to support the growth of SMEs across Europe. FIBR’s new digital savings product will provide savers in the Netherlands and Germany with a seamless experience to deposit their savings. FIBR intends to open for UK savers in 2022.
Appointed in May 2020, CEO Oren Bass has brought in a stellar team to develop a new digital bank strategy and brand, bringing change into the SME market.
Oren comments: “Thousands of SMEs across Europe have faced intense pressure over the last 20 months and need funding to support their growth. On the flipside, savers want to see their money safe and to support those businesses that are the lifeblood of the community. At FIBR, our mission is to help the European economy recover through enabling the success of SMEs. We are focused on starting with a suite of lending products as that’s where SMEs most acutely feel the pain. Our approach to other banks is uniquely different – we have drawn on our collective experience to build a strong and stable bank with the technology and agility of a fintech. Adopting this ‘best of both worlds’ philosophy, our connected digital approach means we can deploy our balance sheet strength efficiently, both directly and indirectly, empowering our customers and responding quickly to the evolving needs of the market.”
Jaap Boersma, CTO of FIBR, added: “Taking a complete greenfield approach we’ve built a connected and digital banking platform that will enable us to rapidly scale across Europe. Utilizing the best of SaaS we’ve built a platform that is Application Programming Interface (API) first, fully cloud-native and modular-in-design with data-at-the-core. Our Banking-as-a-Service platform is designed to not only facilitate our own lending but also the needs of other European lenders so that our customers are supported in every stage of their life cycle.”