Starling and Tide admit leaving customers unhappy with BBLS but say they’ve helped many others
Tide CEO Oliver Prill said Tide will participate in BBLS again while Starlng executive Helen Bierton highlighted the thousands of customers Starling has helped.
Image source: Oliver Prill / Tide.
Frames Tide and Starling admitted that clients were not happy with their handling of the government-backed Bounce Back Loan Program (BBLS), but said they had helped many other clients.
Tide CEO Oliver prill and Head of Banking Services at Starling Helen Bierton spoke yesterday at the AltFi Finance Festival on a session titled “ Cracking The SME Opportunity ”, which also featured Soren Skov Mogensen, Director of Growth at Banking Circle.
Starling and Tide both have experienced negative reactions from clients about their handling of BBLS loans.
Tide closed his plan after being unable to raise funds to meet the volume of loans requested and having no funding provided by the government as Starling faced a backlash after he stopped accepting new individual trader business accounts.
Bierton said: “Unfortunately some clients have been disappointed. But there are so many clients who have been taken care of.”
Bierton highlighted the 35,000+ Starling customers who have taken out a loan under the program.
“We don’t do it right every time. But we will listen to our customers and we will support them. But there are also difficult decisions to be made. “
Prill said: “I’m often asked ‘would I have done it again?’ Yes I would, because we have helped some. And I’m still hopeful that at some point the government will consider lending directly. “
“We feel really bad about it. We did our best to resolve it quickly and we kind of got it under control at the start of the third quarter, ”he added.
Prill also highlighted the dynamics of a push for SMEs opening commercial current accounts during Covid with fintechs like Tide as large retail banks struggled to open new accounts during the pandemic.
Bierton added that “the account opening experience for Starling has just been phenomenal during this period”.
The panel was moderated by Oscar Willaims-Grut, senior correspondent for Yahoo Finance.