Capability and Innovation Fund

The purpose of the Capability and Innovation Fund is to encourage eligible bodies to:

  1. develop and improve their capability to compete with RBS in the provision of banking services to SMEs; and
  2. develop and improve the financial products and services which are available to SMEs.

The Capability and Innovation Fund comprised a total of £425 million which was divided into four pools. BCR was responsible for evaluating the applications and disbursing the funds. All fifteen grants were awarded in 2019.

In early 2020, two awardees, Metro Bank and Nationwide, each returned £50m to BCR after their own internal strategic reviews indicated a change in business direction. BCR announced the redeployment of £100 million of the returned funds under Pool E to support eligible bodies providing innovative financial services to UK SMEs. This was delivered across two Application Periods, one for Pool D Bodies and the other for Pool A, B and C Bodies. Some 238 organisations were invited to provide views on award sizes in a consultation launched in April. This had 100 responses which resulted in 6 awards being made in Application Period One for D Bodies and 4 awards being made in Application Period Two for A, B and C Bodies.

In January 2021, one of the Pool E awardees Onfido Limited (a D body) returned its £5m award after its own internal strategic review resulted in a change in business focus. As a result, BCR will run a further funding round, Pool F, commencing in August 2021 to redeploy these funds. Please click here for more information. 

To understand how BCR makes CIF decisions see here.

With the return of Pool E funds, as of today, BCR is monitoring delivery of 23 awards across five pools. How BCR monitors Capability and Innovation Fund awardees can be found here.

Pool A

Purpose:

To facilitate the development of more advanced business current account offerings and ancillary products for SMEs in the UK giving preference to beneficiaries with an established business current account offering.

Pool B

Purpose:

To facilitate the modernisation of existing business current account offerings or the development of new business current accounts or ancillary product propositions for SMEs in the UK.

Pool C

Purpose:

To facilitate the expansion of business offerings to include, lending or payments services to SMEs in the United Kingdom or international payments services to SMEs in the United Kingdom. 

Pool D

Purpose:

To facilitate the commercialisation of financial technology that is relevant to SMEs.

Pool E

(Application Period One)

Purpose:

To facilitate the commercialisation of financial technology that is relevant to SMEs.

Pool E

(Application Period Two)

Purpose (Pool A Bodies):

To facilitate the development of more advanced business current account offerings and ancillary products for SMEs in the UK giving preference to beneficiaries with an established business current account offering.

Purpose (Pool B Bodies):

To facilitate the modernisation of existing business current account offerings or the development of new business current accounts or ancillary product propositions for SMEs in the UK.

Purpose (Pool C Bodies):

To facilitate the expansion of business offerings to include, lending or payments services to SMEs in the United Kingdom or international payments services to SMEs in the United Kingdom. 

Number and value of grants:

£100 million – Starling Bank Limited

£70 million – Metro Bank PLC*

£60 million – ClearBank Ltd

*£50 million returned by Metro Bank PLC in February 2020

Number and value of grants:

£50 million*

£15 million – Investec Bank plc

£15 million – The Co-operative Bank

*£50 million returned by Nationwide Building Society in April 2020

Number and value of grants:

£10 million – Atom Bank PLC

£10 million – iwoca Ltd

£10 million – Modulr Finance Limited

£10 million – The Currency Cloud Group Ltd

Number and value of grants:

£5 million – Codat Limited

£5 million – Fluidly Limited

£5 million – Form3 Ltd

£5 million – Funding Options Limited

£5 million – Swoop Finance Limited

Number and value of grants:

£5 million – Funding Xchange Ltd

£5 million*

£2.5 million – Codat Limited

£2.5 million – ezbob Ltd

£2.5 million – Fractal Labs Ltd

£2.5 million – Previse Ltd

*£5 million returned by Onfido Limited in January 2021

Number and value of grants:

£35 million – Virgin Money UK PLC

£25 million – ClearBank Ltd

£10 million – Ebury Partners Limited

£10 million – MarketFinance Limited

Public Commitments

To view all Public Commitments and Quarterly Updates, please see here. For ease of reference, all awardees have now summarised the Key Achievements from their Public Commitments. These can be found here.

Terms of Use            Privacy & Data           Glossary           Contact Us

Loading