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Crowndfunding could help Bank of Dave expand

Burnley entrepreneur Dave Fishwick is to utilise crowdfunding to make his dream of opening a UK bank become reality.

Dave, who runs Burnley Savings and Loans Limited (BSAL), made headlines when he starred in his own TV show looking into the country’s broken banking system.

The Channel 4 show uncovered how difficult it was for ‘outsiders’ to open a bank, but now Dave is currently undertaking the application process to become an authorised UK bank.

He is also hoping to raise £2.5m through crowdfunding platform Seedrs, which will be used to purchase IT systems and build the bank’s infrastructure.

Once up and running, the business will provide affordable loans to individuals and SMEs. Its mission is to provide  customers, who might not access to other forms of finance, to obtain credit, which in turn will help them to improve their credit rating in the future.

Over the past seven years, the BSAL lent nearly £20m to over 3,000 qualifying borrowers across the UK. Dave says that he has seen that customers seeking a modest loan may in the future turn into a customer that is eligible to borrow a much larger amount therefore creating a compelling ‘feeder’ acquisition strategy for the company.

Dave said: “The core vision for Bank of Dave is to create an ethical, successful and sustainable bank which is distinctive from established UK banks which we believe are falling short on supporting underserved individuals and small business.

“We are delighted to be launching our first ever funding round on Seedrs, giving our hundreds of thousands of amazing supporters a chance to share in a new UK-owned high street bank.”

The bank is forecast to achieve an annual operating profit of £4.5m before tax in Year 5.

Jim Bradley, CEO, added: “We continue to witness a real market demand for financial providers that offer essential banking services to customers that traditionally find it difficult or are unable to access affordable credit. We are confident that once fully authorised that the Bank of Dave will be the bank that delivers this capability.”

Original story: Lancashire Business View