Challenger bank OakNorth hits unicorn status as it grabs £154m to take its fintech global

Lucy White
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OakNorth is now valued at more than $1bn (Source: Getty)

Money seems to be growing on the tree for OakNorth, a challenger bank which has just raised another £154m to take its proposition global.

The business, which specialises in providing smaller loans to UK businesses, secured investment from Singapore's Clermont Group, Martin Hughes' asset management firm Toscafund and New York's Coltrane who have together bought a 16 per cent stake.

The latest cash injection values the company in excess of £900m, more than the $1bn at which a company can claim “unicorn” status.

Read more: OakNorth spreads its roots: Challenger bank makes £15m loan to its first global company

“While we have reached an £800m loan book in two years, we know that this represents just a fraction of the businesses that need financing support,” said Rishi Khosla, chief executive and co-founder of OakNorth. “This funding will enable us to boost our lending by an additional £1.5bn and add thousands more jobs and homes in the UK.”

Launched in September 2015, OakNorth has already provided financing for businesses such as cafe chain Leon and Brasserie Blanc.

It intends to use the new funding to expand its Acorn data and technology platform, which allows lenders to originate, underwrite and monitor deals more efficiently and rigorously, into other countries.

Read more: Challenger bank OakNorth completes its largest-ever deal with £21m loan to fund a luxury London hotel

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