Jason Bates interviews Rishi Khosla, CEO of OakNorth, for this Fintech Insider video, the under-the-radar fintech unicorn in the SME lending space. They discuss OakNorth’s origin story, how they reached profitability within 24 months, the social impact of the SME lending space, and what the future holds for this little-big company with deep roots.
Jason starts by asking Rishi to describe the OakNorth origin story, how he and co-founder Joel Perlman came to found the bank, and the problem they’re solving as a company for the underserved SME market in the UK.
He explained how they went to a bank to get funding for their new venture (at the time, the proposition they sold before going on to found OakNorth) and found the stumbling blocks for small business funding for themselves. When they accessed what he calls the “institutional” part of the banks, they had far more access to funding than from a high street bank, because there was someone taking a detailed look at your proposition, investing their time into investing their finances. This experience gave them the idea that they were probably not alone, and was an experience shared by many SMEs that want a middle grade loan from a bank to help them start their business.
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