Every Wednesday, we delve into the latest fintech updates from across the UK. This week brings updates from CredditLadder, Barclays Eagle Labs, Accept Cards, PwC and Cambridge & Counties Bank.
CredditLadder continues to support UK tenants
CreditLadder, the UK rent reporting platform, is joining forces with Digital ID Connect, the UK’s largest digital identity app network, to enable Digital ID app users to seamlessly report their rental payments to the four main credit reference agencies.
Just under 40 per cent of people in England rent, increasing to over 50 per cent in London. To help bring financial fairness to these tenants, CreditLadder has now reported over £1billion in rent payments – meaning payments now appear on credit files and enable lenders to see that on-time rent payments have been made.
Sheraz Dar, CEO at CreditLadder, commented: “At CreditLadder, our sole mission is to help UK tenants access fairer finance. By enabling Digital ID Connect users to report their rent payments we move another step closer to helping every single tenant improve their access to credit and accomplish their financial goals. With lenders in the UK factoring in rent payments when making credit decisions, including beginning to consider on time rent payments when looking to assess mortgage applications, it’s yet another reason why reporting rental payments is so important”.
Barclays Eagle Labs launches skills platform
Funded by the Department for Science Innovation and Technology, Barclays Eagle Labs has launched an online skills platform for budding entrepreneurs looking to become the leaders of the next tech giants.
The platform will help the next generation of tech entrepreneurs from things like how to raise finance to creating their first business plan.
Amanda Allan, director of Barclays Eagle Labs, explained: “This is another fantastic addition to the range of programmes and supports that Barclays Eagle Labs offer tech startups and their founders. The Eagle Labs Academy is an exciting platform which we hope will encourage the next wave of tech entrepreneurs to start and grow their ideas into a lucrative business.
“The digital economy continues to experience huge growth and this platform is a great starting point for anyone who is thinking of entering this space and becoming a tech entrepreneur.”
Accept Cards becomes completely employee-owned
Payments broker Accept Cards, which works with more than 260 accountancy and financial services firms in the UK, has become employee-owned, with all the shares transferring to an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT).
In a transaction understood to be the first in the UK payments sector, the EOT will see the 14 employees take ownership of the firm.
Richard Bradley, CEO of Accept Cards, reacted to the development: “This is the natural next step for our business and a really exciting time in the history of Accept Cards. The business has secured continuous year-on-year growth, which has only been possible because of the hard work and dedication of everybody working here.”
Global CEOs not confident about survival chances
Forty-five per cent of over 4,700 global CEOs surveyed by PwC do not believe their businesses will survive, barring significant changes, in the next ten years.
Bob Moritz, global chairman of PwC, said: “There’s the 55 per cent who think they don’t have to change radically, and I would argue that’s a little naive because the world is changing so fast around them.”
Advancements in generative AI were top of the concerns for most survey respondents, with almost 75 per cent predicting it would significantly change their business in the next three years.
The PwC survey also showed a stronger focus on environmental concerns pressuring margins, with four in ten executives saying they accepted lower returns for climate-friendly investments.
Cambridge & Counties Bank registers to business and asset finance Standards
Cambridge & Counties Bank has become the first financial institution to enter interim registration to both the Lending Standards Board‘s business Standards and business Standards for asset finance at the same time.
The LSB’s outcomes-focused Standards set the benchmark for good lending practice in the UK, providing protections for SMEs across the entire customer journey. They are the only protections of their kind and are formally recognised by the Financial Conduct Authority.
Sarah Barker, chief commercial officer at Cambridge & Counties Bank, reacted to the news: “We have always promoted good lending practices, and we are proud to be the first firm to register to both the business and asset finance Standards at the same time. Working towards full registration will assure our customers that they are dealing with a bank that prioritises the highest level of conduct across its operations – not just in line with industry best practices but leading at the forefront.”