British fintech Stenn offers invoice financing for SMEs

UK-based FinTech Stenn, specializing in invoice finance, focuses its energies on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and emerging markets, where access to trade finance has often been limited.

Trade finance is particularly critical for exporting companies, which often wait months for payment due to slow international trade.

“We realized that many goods were sourced from emerging markets, such as China, India and Latin America, so we started meeting with suppliers in those countries and saw how underwhelmed they were. -banked,” said co-founder and CEO Greg Karpovsky. in an interview with the Financial Times.

Stenn has the ability to finance transactions worth up to $10 million, a range higher than that offered by other FinTechs in the area of ​​invoice financing and putting it in the same league as banks, by FT.

In addition to increasing access to emerging markets, Stenn is also looking to beat existing invoice financing solutions in terms of approval speed. The startup promises to approve online loan applications in just 48 hours. Stenn uses a data-centric approach to assess credit, fraud and compliance risk, and Karpovsky said the company is a technology company whose computer engineers make up more than half of its employees.

According to the company’s website, to date Stenn has provided more than $10 billion in financing to SMEs in 74 countries since its launch in 2016. Capital is provided by a range of banks and managers institutional funds, including HSBC and Barclays.

David Brear, CEO of FinTech consultancy 11:FS, told the FT that in the current economic climate, growing SMEs will be “queuing up” for invoice financing services given the pressure on their cash flow.

Calling the pressures facing SMEs “scary,” Brear said, “I can only see Stenn thinning out in this space. So if he has a big enough book from a lending perspective, the risk is quite weak when it comes to financing invoices.It’s a bit of a blue ocean for them given the lack of competition at this scale.

Nigerian company Breeze, which recently partnered with UK supply chain finance firm Finverity to accelerate its growth, is another startup that has turned its attention to the SME trade finance gap in the markets. emerging.

Read also: Supply Chain FinTech Breeze teams up with Finverity on African SMB Capital

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