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GB Bank receives UK banking licence

by LLB Finance Reporter
26th Oct 21 12:35 pm

Champion of the North’ GBB today received its UK banking licence (Authorised with restrictions or ‘AWR’), which means it has been authorised and regulated to trade with restrictions by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA).

Now trading as GB Bank, it will support property developers in regions of the UK that have been forgotten about by addressing the shortage of funding required to level up and get Britain building again. It will have an initial focus in the North East, Yorkshire and North West.

This is a huge step for the UK’s newest challenger bank, which aims to lend 3 billion GBP over five years and build a 1 billion GBP plus balance sheet.

A recent report by the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Fair Business Banking outlined a critical shortage of funding to small and mediums sized enterprises (SMEs) that is restricting growth and proving a significant barrier to the Government’s ‘levelling-up’ ambitions. GB Bank will tackle this head on by focusing exclusively on providing SME property development loans in key underserved UK regions.

Positioned as the ‘go to bank’ for property developers in the North, GB Bank aims to lead the field with its approach to making banking easy. Its cutting-edge systems deliver the best digital experience possible for customers, while a focus on building relationships with property developers ensures they receive a localised service tailored to their individual needs, making the process of accessing finance easier and more straightforward.

GB Bank has a strong leadership team comprised of executives who have held senior roles at Barclays Bank, HBOS, Santander, Lloyds Banking Group, Aldermore and whose chairman, Paul Rippon co-founded Monzo and Starling Bank.

Sue Hayes, Chief Executive Officer, GB Bank said: “We are delighted to have gained the confidence of the regulator and receive our banking licence. This is a landmark day for GB Bank, bringing to fruition the hard work of our team to build a new specialist bank that provides much needed financial support to property developers in underserved regions, as well as savings rates that the UK public will love.

“I’d like to thank all our shareholders for their valued support along our journey, as well as all our colleagues, past and present, who have been involved in getting us to this point. I would particularly like to thank the Teesside Pension Fund which has supported our vision and journey to this exciting milestone.

“We are determined to be a powerful force in the regions and GB Bank’s purpose goes beyond lending money. Our team is passionate about supporting property developers in areas that have been forgotten about. We want to lead and support the movement to level up the North and get Britain building again.

Paul Rippon, Chairman, GB Bank said: “As the UK recovers from the pandemic it is becoming even more important that we improve the provision of finance to small businesses. GB Bank is perfectly positioned to better serve regional developers who will help Britain build more homes and spaces and drive economic prosperity for all. Obtaining our provisional banking licence is real testament to what the team has delivered so far, and I believe with our experience and expertise we are strongly placed to bring about real change to this market.”

Dr Emma Black, GB Bank Co-Founder said: “When we founded GB Bank we were fuelled by a desire to make a difference. We wanted for our customers lives to be improved when they banked with us; we pictured a bank working at the heart of the community, together with its savers and borrowers to bring towns, cities and regions across Britain back to life.

“We must thank all those past and present who have helped and supported the bank in reaching this incredible milestone. We can’t wait to see our vision come to life, truly making a difference in the decades and centuries ahead serving as a catalyst for creating new jobs, homes, offices and so much more.”

Currently only c245k of the Government’s annual 300k housebuilding target is being met. GB Bank, intends to get Britain building by:

• Providing property development loans of between 1 million GBP and 5 million GBP to support regional property developers, small and medium sized businesses, and construction companies across the North East, Yorkshire and North West.
• Lending 3 billion GBP over five years building a 1 billion GBP plus balance sheet.
• Funding almost 20,000 homes and several million square feet of office space, supporting the creation of over 100,000 jobs.
• For savers, competitive fixed rates will be protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

In 2020 GB Bank (then GBB) was delighted to announce it had secured 20 million GBP investment from the Teesside Pension Fund (TPF). It has since secured a further commitment from the TPF of 28 million GBP. This continued investment underlines the Fund’s commitment to supporting GB Bank’s mission of lending to SME property developers, playing a crucial role in the levelling up agenda and helping to get Britain building again.

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