Bank referrals to designated finance platforms FAQs

Finance platform referrals

About finance platform referrals

Each platform will provide access to a range of lenders including some high street banks and niche funding specialists. Across the platforms typical financing products include business loans, overdrafts, credit cards, asset finance and invoice finance.

Typically, the information provided by your bank would not be sufficient to enable another lender to undertake a credit assessment. The platform aims to provide you with a funding solution best suited for your needs by ‘matching’ your circumstances and requirements to lenders on their platform. To do this they may require additional information.

Under the regulations your bank is required to submit information to all platforms. However, there is no obligation to use every platform and you may decide which platform(s) you wish to act on your behalf.

No. A platform must not charge any fee to a business for use of this service.

Lenders consider borrowing requests based on a range of factors and these may vary across lenders. Therefore some lenders maybe willing to lend when others are not.

Platforms are credit brokers regulated by the FCA – they are not lenders.

Providing consent will not harm your credit rating. Completing an application with a Designated Platform will not affect your credit score. If you make an application to one or more of the lenders it is likely that each lender will undertake credit searches and take previous searches into consideration as part of their risk assessment. However, a number of credit applications alone should not normally cause a problem for you.

Data protection

The designated platforms are required to have robust systems in place that protect against loss, corruption, destruction, misuse or unauthorised access of information.

The platforms are designated by the Government. The platforms are required to comply with data protection legislation, as well as the protections set out in the Small and Medium Sized Business (Finance Platforms) Regulations 2015 (.pdf - 428kb). Platforms can only use your data in a manner consistent with these regulations and cannot use it for marketing purposes without your consent.


If you feel that a referral should have been offered, contact your bank who will look into the matter for you, or you can also make use of the services offered by the platforms at any time by visiting their websites:

Business Finance Compared
Funding Options
Funding Xchange

The Business Finance Guide has recently been published by the British Business Bank in partnership with the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW).

It is a unique guide that sets out the main things to consider and outlines sources of finance available to businesses. The online version includes an interactive tool allowing businesses to explore their financing options more easily.

You can find the online version at