Industry Views: New Bounce Back Loans Scheme opens for smallest UK businesses

The new Bounce Back Loans Scheme #BBLS opens for smallest UK Businesses, lenders under scheme can provide loans of up to £50k over six years. The First 12 months of interest is paid by government, then 2.5% pa interest. The repayments are deferred for 12 months and a simple, standardised application form has been promised to speed up process.

Max Chuard, CEO, Temenos, the banking software company, said:

“The launch of the Government’s ‘bounce back’ loan scheme couldn’t come soon enough for small businesses whose livelihoods are being crippled by the COVID-19 pandemic. Unlike its sister scheme, CBILS, the new programme promises to fast-track finance for businesses in need and give access to cash ‘within days’. However, its effectiveness will depend heavily on whether UK banks are equipped with the right technology to be able to cope with this unprecedented and increasing demand for fast finance.

 “For the programme to function effectively, it is vital that banks use the latest cloud and Explainable AI (XAI) technologies that can improve their efficiency and resilience, and cope with the digital onboarding and processing of skyrocketing volumes of loans.

“As banks look to quickly move away from restrictive legacy IT, cloud models offer rapid delivery times, and the ability to quickly scale up or down to meet change in demand. This can provide vital business resilience for now, and cost efficiencies to sustain their business in the years to come.

“With banks’ workforces more stretched than ever due to illness, self-isolation and staff caring for their families, XAI can expedite and dramatically improve loan processing, helping skeleton workforces to optimise their efforts, automate manual processes and support the faster delivery of huge volumes of loans. Most importantly, XAI automated decisions are transparent and can be explained in human language as they take place to the bank employees, the customers and the regulators.

“With UK banks themselves feeling the effects of the economic downturn, it is vital that they invest in technologies that can immediately support them, and provide resilience and sustainable growth in the future.”