What Growth Street’s funding round means for the UK’s entrepreneurs

Business owners around the UK need to know: the financial services landscape is changing.

I’m delighted that Growth Street has raised £7.5m in a scale-up investment round, led by the Merian Chrysalis Investment Company Limited (Merian Chrysalis), which is advised by leading asset manager Merian Global Investors.

We have taken significant steps in recent months to build out our team and to deliver a fantastic service for Britain’s SMEs. Read on to find out how we’re going to use this funding to make life easier for the UK’s many businesses in need of truly flexible capital.

What’s got us here?

Last year was very successful for Growth Street. We’ve been able to help more businesses than ever fund their growth: that means hiring more staff, investing in machinery and other equipment, smoothing out seasonal cash flow issues, and much more besides. (We were also pleased to become directly authorised and regulated by the FCA during 2018.)

This growth has created a range of other opportunities for us. Supporting more businesses - and generating more revenue - gives us the chance to bring more talented people on board, from software developers to salespeople. We’re also investing in our suite of products, creating innovative tools that will give our customers new ways to manage cash flow and take control of their finances.

These investments are designed to give Growth Street a platform for genuine long-term success. But in a crowded and competitive marketplace, we know that other partners are essential to help us deliver on our ambitious goals for 2019 and beyond. That’s why we’re so excited to start working with Merian - a truly global asset manager that is backing challengers like us to change the face of business finance.

Merian Chrysalis was established to target “the fastest-growing, often tech-enabled, private companies in the UK”, while prioritising “mature, high-quality and high-growth businesses”. For a scaling company like Growth Street, Merian Chrysalis’s approach is a perfect fit. So how are we going to use this funding to improve prospects for Britain’s businesses?

What’s next?

We know better than most that for a growing business, having funds on tap to invest in operations can make a profound difference. At Growth Street, we will be investing in tools that make our customers’ lives easier.

We are already making Open Banking a central part of our operations, for instance. Since its launch a year ago, Open Banking has quickly become a vital tool for us. It allows us to quickly understand a borrowers’ creditworthiness and make decisions faster. In an increasingly uncertain world, this helps give our clients the speed and certainty they need. We’re excited to broaden out our Open Banking use in the months to come: we hope that real-time access to transaction data will help us provide predictive insights to customers, alerting them to anomalies or allowing them to better forecast incoming and outgoing payments.

We are working hard to build more partnerships and integrations with brokers, accountants, professional services companies and other key stakeholders. In 2018, we announced a ground-breaking new collaboration with Starling Bank, and we’re aiming for many more exciting partnerships in 2019.

At the same time, we will also prioritise expanding our experienced and professional client-facing team. We think entrepreneurs want to be understood by their finance providers: they’re looking for partners in the truest sense of the word, and they don’t want to be just another line on a spreadsheet. Relationship management will be at the core of our development over the coming months and years, and we want to continue to provide exceptional service to our business borrowers.

Merian Chrysalis investing in Growth Street is just the start. The way businesses have always thought about finance is starting to change dramatically. There’s no danger of us sitting back and resting on our laurels: the hard work begins now. We can’t wait for what’s to come!

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Chief Executive Officer