Pan-European marketplace Raisin continues its trailblazing expansion. Having penetrated new geographies with international and localized services in 2016, the Berlin-headquartered startup is now broadening its offering to address a new customer segment: small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Starting September 14, businesses can open term deposit accounts on Raisin’s German site www.weltsparen.de, or more precisely, on www.weltsparen.de/geschaeftskunden.
SMEs can earn money from their cash surplus instead of being hit by negative interest rates
Germany is one of the European countries most hardly hit by the current context of low interest rates as German banks are flooded with liquidities from the ECB’s quantitative easing. In this context, businesses are hit even harder than retail investors, being currently offered rates as low as a negative interest rate of -0.14% for a 1-year term deposit.
Raisin steps in with a proposition targeting SMEs, a proposition which allows it to add the highest value to both sides of the marketplace, depositors and banks. Indeed, SMEs experience the lowest interest rates for their cash surplus as, unlike large corporation with a professional treasury unit, they have very limited tools to find alternative solutions beyond their traditional local providers. For the banks who partner with Raisin, SMEs are a privileged source of funds, more attractive than wholesale and large-corporate funding in terms of both net stable funding ratio (NSFR) and liquidity coverage ratio (LCR) regulatory requirements.
“From now on, [German businesses] can take advantage of up to 0.7 percent by simply registering on our online market place,” said Raisin’s CEO and co-founder Tamaz Georgadze.
Three European banks, Banco BNI Europa from Portugal, Younited Credit from France, and Greenhill Bank from Germany are Raisin’s first partner banks to offer interests of between 0.12 percent and 0.7 percent for business clients’ deposits with a term of between 6 months and three years. More banks are expected to join by the end of 2017 to offer SMEs a growing range of choices.
“We are very happy to support Raisin in tapping what can be a very interesting segment and provide German SMEs with this great alternative to manage their liquidity,” BNI Europa Executive Chairman Pedro Pinto Coelho added.
Raisin has mapped and digitalized the varying business account opening procedures of European banks to make them easily accessible by foreign business investors using their local language and in compliance with their local law.
Raisin’s inroad into corporate deposits draws from its success in serving retail customers from all over Europe on their platform www.raisin.com and on country-dedicated platforms in Germany, France, Spain, and Austria. Since the company’s founding in 2013, more than 90,000 customers have invested over €4 billion ($4.8 billion) through the platform.
The company intends to extend its business deposit offering to other European countries – including France, Spain, Austria and Italy – but it has not yet set a timeline for the new services roll-out.
Therese Torris, PhD, is a Senior Contributing Editor to Crowdfund Insider. She is an entrepreneur and consultant in eFinance and eCommerce based in Paris. She has covered crowdfunding and P2P lending since the early days when Zopa was created in the United Kingdom. She was a director of research and consulting at Gartner Group Europe, Senior VP at Forrester Research and Content VP at Twenga. She publishes a French personal finance blog, Le Blog Finance Pratique.