SME digital finance platform Funding Options appoints Malcolm Leach as CTO following strongest quarter since start of the pandemic

FieldHouse Associates
FieldHouse Associates

Fintech’s proprietary real-time lending platform Funding CloudTM a key revenue driver as SMEs turn to alternative lenders to support post-Covid recovery.

Digital finance platform Funding Options has appointed Malcolm Leach to its management team as CTO, continuing its mission to bridge the SME funding gap by providing businesses with the best finance options on the market, at speed and powered by technology.

Funding Options launched its award-winning Funding CloudTM platform in April 2021 and last month introduced Funding Cloud: Connect, expanding this offering to intermediaries such as accountants and business advisors. Through Funding CloudTM, the first real-time lending platform for SMEs, the business has reached a record of 20 seconds from loan application to credit approval, with time from application to funds in the bank of just 18 minutes.

Leach has nearly three decades as a technology leader, during which he has founded successful software businesses, created innovative new products and transformed technology teams for many leading organisations. He has held senior technology roles at Universal Music Group, Cap Gemini, Swiss Life AG, Virgin Media, iCrossing and joins Funding Options after three years at another high growth, market leading UK fintech.

Simon Cureton, CEO of Funding Options comments, “We are delighted to welcome Malcolm to the team, as we close our most successful quarter since the crisis began, moving closer to our target of facilitating £1bn in vital finance for SMEs. As a highly experienced CTO, Malcolm joins us as we continue to realise the opportunities presented by Funding CloudTM –  in particular how we are able to optimise data for the ecosystem and drive further auto-decisioning benefits as more alternative lenders embrace open banking and embedded finance to support SMEs.”

Malcolm Leach, incoming CTO of Funding Options, says “SMEs are critical to the economy but have been historically underserved when it comes to accessing finance. As UK businesses look to recover from Covid whilst also managing inflationary forces, access to fast and appropriate business finance has never been more important. I am excited to be joining Funding Options at this critical time, helping the SME ecosystem to take full advantage of the innovation provided by Funding CloudTM and working closely with our panel of more than 120 active lenders to enable businesses and their advisers to have the fastest access to the funds they need.”

About Funding Options

Funding Options is a leading data-driven marketplace for business finance, helping SMEs get the right funding in place so they can trade, plan and grow with confidence. Working with more than 120 lender partners offering the broadest range of finance options available, they’ve helped more than 11,000 businesses across the UK and Netherlands securing over £600m in funding.

In a highly fragmented SME lending ecosystem, Funding Options is fast becoming the de facto marketplace for business finance, connecting businesses, lenders and partners in a frictionless digital journey. Funding Options sees over £1bn of demand for business finance from SMEs every month and last year alone facilitated £140 million of funding for more than 1,600 customers.

As well as employing a dedicated team of experienced Business Finance Specialists, the company is transforming the way SMEs access finance through Funding Cloud™, the first fully integrated and real-time lending platform. It uses data analytics, open banking APIs and Artificial Intelligence to auto-decision the approval of loans, meaning borrowers’ needs are matched to the most suitable lenders and access to funding is possible within minutes.

Through Funding Cloud™, loan application to credit approval has taken just 20 seconds, with the record for application to funds in an SME’s bank account just 18 minutes.

Recognised as a fast-growth scaleup, Funding Options has twice been named in the top half of the FT 1000, the annual list of Europe’s fastest growing companies, Lendtech of the year in the UK Fintech Awards 2021 and is part of Silicon Valley Comes to the UK’s (SVC2UK) 2020 Scale Up Club cohort, a prestigious annual list of fast-growth UK technology companies destined for great things.