Anyone who has worked with small businesses will know the challenges that they need to overcome to grow, survive and thrive. According to the Federation of Small Business (FSB) in the UK, there were 5.94 million small businesses (with 0 to 49 employees) at the start of 2020. This equates to , 99.3% of the total business operating in the UK market. SMEs are vital for the UK economy as they also employ a significant number of individuals in the private sector (c.60%).

These businesses tend to have to work extremely hard to manage their resources well and managing cashflow is vital. Organisations looking to make life easier for SMEs, need to think about how they add value in their context. So, who are the top 5 FinTech’s trying to make life easier for SMEs?

 

Company Purpose of the company
How it helps SMEsFeatures & Benefits
OakNorth was set-up with the aim of providing a ‘bank for entrepreneurs by entrepreneurs’

The founders of OakNorth, Khosla and Perlman were inspired to set up a bank after they had a not-so-great experience finding funding for their previous business venture. They understand first-hand the challenges and pain points entrepreneurs face as they have been through them
OakNorth understands the individual needs of borrowing businesses• Customers can attend committees where they can share their business plans
• Competitively priced loans and deposit rates
Stripe “Millions of businesses of all sizes—from start-ups to large enterprises—use Stripe’s software and APIs to accept payments, send pay-outs, and manage their businesses online”Driving small business growth to make accepting payments simple, cost effective and global• Very feature rich services that helps combat fraud, manage invoices, physical/virtual cards
• Cost effective offering to accept payments for any entry level, or mature business
TransferWise (TW) like most great product companies, was created to solve the founders’ problem. Hinrikus and Käärmann did not think it was right that when transferring money between the UK and Estonia banks deducted such a large transaction fee. The founded TW to solve the same issue for othersAllows SMEs (and individuals) to transfer money abroad using real exchange rates• Low-cost mechanism to transfer money internationally
• 59 countries available
• The TW card can be use with Apple Pay
Tide provides small businesses with a range of timesaving and cost-cutting tools to enable them to exert effort towards growing their businessIntegration of several features to help business owners save time. Spend analysis, invoice payments, and easy integration with accounting packages like Xero and QuickBooks • Simple fee structure and you only pay for what you use
• Open an account in minutes
• Well-designed mobile app makes keeping track of finances easier
Xero was set-up and designed to take the pain out of book-keeping, saving time and money. Gaining an easy view of how your business is performing. Easy to connect to existing banking provider

Ability to run financial management through easy and clear features • Easy payroll offered as part of service
• Prepare VAT returns easily for filing
• Managing cash flow from expenses, invoices, payments, and inventory

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