Agência para o Investimento e Comércio Externo de Portugal


Banco BNI Europa has entered into a strategic partnership with Funding Circle to support the growth of SMEs in Germany.

The Portuguese online bank will provide €50m of funding to finance small business loans in Germany through the peer-to-peer platform.


The investment is expected to support around 600 companies and create close to 1,500 new jobs.


Banco BNI Europa said that its long-term goal was to extend the partnership to other countries where Funding Circle was active.

“An investment in German [SMEs] – the staple of European economic stability – is a highly attractive asset class,” said Pedro Pinto Coelho, executive chairman of Banco BNI Europa (pictured above).


“And Funding Circle is the professional partner that convinced us with their risk assessment and credit analysis.


“A perfect match: both Banco BNI Europa and Funding Circle have [proved] that they are able to stimulate local economies through technological and financial innovation.”


Banco BNI Europa will be joining a large pool of Funding Circle investors – which includes 70,000 retail investors – and institutional investors such as the European Investment Bank, the British Business Bank and Aegon.


In December, Funding Circle reached €100m of loans funded through its platform in Germany.


“The partnership with Banco BNI Europa is an important signal for German SMEs – and a further step to establish up-to-date funding solutions for businesses,” said Thorsten Seeger, managing director for Germany at Funding Circle.


“The investment of a renowned institutional partner such as Banco BNI Europa is a stamp of approval of our online lending platform model and our mission to facilitate access to finance for small businesses and reduce their dependency on an outdated banking system.


“Besides delivering attractive returns to investors, we also measure our success through our immediate contribution to stimulating the local economy.”