On 10 September 2019, the Good Credit Financing Foundation (SMF) announced which non-bank financiers were awarded the “Approved Good Credit Financier” quality mark. With the introduction of the quality mark, an important step has been taken towards the further professionalization of the market for non-bank (alternative) financing.
Non-bank financing has grown strongly in the Netherlands in recent years. Research by SMF shows that in 2018 non-bank financiers provided more than € 1 billion in financing to entrepreneurs in SMEs. This volume will increase further in the coming years, so that within a few years 1/3 of all SME financing (up to € 1 million) is expected to be provided by these new, non-bank lenders.
A market that is growing so fast needs regulation
That is why SMF was established in 2018, one of the spearheads of which is: “Promoting professionalism and cooperation between SME financiers, including through a code of conduct”. An independent expert carries out audits to assess whether financiers comply with the code of conduct.
Important points of attention within the audit include:
• Sound organization and work processes
• Expertise and professionalism
• Transparency in communication, pricing and commissions
• Complaints procedure
• Policy of appropriate and responsible financing
Financiers with the quality mark are affiliated with Kifid , so that entrepreneurs with a complaint about a financier can submit a complaint in an easily accessible way.
The first audits have been carried out in recent months
The results of the audits were announced on 10 September. The following financiers have been awarded the “Approved Good Credit Financier” quality mark:
• Boozt24 , factoring
• Collin Crowdfund , crowdfunding
• Dynamic Credit , direct lending, various business loan products
• Fiduciam , direct lending, bridge financing
• Money for each other , crowdfunding
• Satisfied , factoring
• FundIQ , direct lending, subordinated loans
• NPEX , SME fair
• October , Crowdfunding
• Qredits , various business loan products
• Spot cap , direct lending, business loans up to 24 months
After 1 year the accredited financiers are checked
Whether they still meet the requirements of the quality mark. The board of SMF will monitor compliance with the principles. On the basis of developments in the market, the conditions will be further tightened when necessary.
The main objective of SMF is “to promote better access to finance for SMEs”. The quality mark makes a significant contribution to this. Due to the large number of financing providers in the market, it is difficult for entrepreneurs (and advisers) to make a responsible choice. The “Approved Good Credit Financier” quality mark makes the choice simpler and more secure.
SMF aims to test as many financiers as possible in the coming years and thereby contribute to the quality, professionalism and transparency in the SME financing market.