UK bank for social impact set to hit £100m lending target

Unity Trust Bank has invested almost £30m in UK based social ventures over the past year and is on track to exceed it's three year £100m lending target by the end of 2015.

The social impact bank made 57 loans to organisations that are committed to creating positive community, social and environmental impact in 2014, according to its third Social Impact report.

Peter Kelly, director of business development and marketing at Unity, said: “In 2013 we declared our £100m lending target over three years. We’re well on our way to meeting this and look to the future with anticipation and determination. 

“As we continue to grow, we will continue working to increase our social impact, engraining our founding principles into every aspect of our business strategy.”

The report also found that Unity’s lending has helped create and protect 3,423 jobs over the past 12 months. Just over 90% of these jobs have been created through lending to Community Development Finance Institutions (CDFIs).

Unity is the UK’s leading provider of finance to CDFIs and throughout 2014 lent £7.5m to 15 CDFIs that deliver funds to underserved SMEs, micro-businesses and individuals that are excluded from mainstream finance.

As a socially driven bank, Unity uses its customer deposits to fund loans that help create housing, community assets and office space for social ventures. Its lending is split across charities (53%), CDFIs (25%), Registered Social Housing Providers (16%), social enterprises (4%) and Industrial and Provident Societies (2%). 

Kelly said that the bank’s vision is to “become the go-to bank for the civil society,” which provides “businesses and organisations nationwide with financial services that will allow them to grow their social impact, just as we seek to grow our own.”


To view Unity Trust Bank's third Social Impact report in full, click here.

Photo credit: Greg B