Every Wednesday, we delve into the latest fintech updates from across the UK. This week sees a wide range of product launches and company offerings to help combat the cost-of-living crisis.
Students receive financial education
Schools in the Aberdeenshire region have begun educating students about good financial practices after teaming up with financial planning company.
Acumen Financial Planning has created a range of resources as part of its aim to provide greater access to financial education for young people. They include important early lessons such as understanding their first payslip, the importance of pensions and the role of both income tax and national insurance.
Nicola Doohan, recruitment and development manager at Acumen Financial Planning, said: “Financial education in schools is an essential way to help young people achieve better financial outcomes later in life. This is a topic we are passionate about Acumen Financial Planning and are pleased to be able to deliver these videos and give an accessible insight into financial basics.”
Partnership makes quality banking more accessible
Non-profit co-operative Clockwise Credit Union has forged a partnership with ethical account provider Engage to launch its new credit union debit card and current account.
The Clockwise card and current account gives its 20,000-plus members access to a wider range of banking and payment services. It suggests many of its members are excluded from, or under served by, traditional financial services.
Geoff Leech, managing director at Engage, said: “Today, the role of community-based financial co-operatives like Clockwise is more important than ever. As people across the UK have their incomes squeezed through the cost-of-living crisis, it is vital they have access to fair and responsible financial providers.
“Through partnering with Engage to launch their current account, Clockwise will become even more useful and accessible to people in its community.”
UK first zero deposit mortgage to launch
London-based challenger bank Proportunity will offer a zero deposit mortgage in its existing portfolio later this year. The company aims to help those that can’t afford the minimum five per cent deposit required for most mortgages.
As part of the bank’s crowdfunding campaign hosted on Seedrs’ platform, Proportunity explained it aims to help at least one million people onto the property ladder by 2030. In its fundraising video, the bank also revealed plans for a ‘rent to buy’ offering.
Vadim Toader, Proportunity CEO and co-founder explained: “In today’s market, rising interest rates, an unaffordable mortgage, and cost of living crises are making the process of buying a home even more challenging.
“We’ve already financed over £100million of homes, helping over 260 people onto the property ladder, and we’re not slowing down anytime soon.”
Bank of London heads to Belfast
Technology company and clearing bank Bank of London is opening a Centre of Excellence in Belfast. The new office has already taken on 34 new members of staff; while it aims to accommodate 232 new jobs by 2026.
The bank’s first Centre of Excellence brings it closer to important academic institutions and a growing technology sector within Belfast.
Anthony Watson, founder & group chief executive officer of The Bank of London, said: “To build the future of finance, we need to be where the future is. Belfast is now the UK’s gateway city to the European Union, and this coupled with Belfast’s exceptional fintech talent across multiple disciplines, makes it the logical choice for The Bank of London’s Centre of Excellence to power our UK expansion.”