Helping more investors build a well-diversified portfolio

At Funding Circle, we want you to earn attractive, stable returns by lending to UK businesses. To help you achieve this, we suggest that investors diversify their portfolios by lending small amounts to lots of different businesses.

We want every investor to benefit from a well-diversified portfolio and have a positive lending experience. As part of this, we have decided to change the minimum amount you can lend to each individual business from £20 to £10.

Helping investors with smaller portfolios diversify

Our automatic tool lends no more than 0.5% of your portfolio to any individual business. This means that if one of the businesses you lend to is unable to repay their loan, only a small amount of your portfolio would be affected. Spreading your risk in this way helps you earn a more stable return.

By reducing the minimum loan part size to £10, more investors will be able to build a well-diversified portfolio. Every new investor who lends £2,000 or more will now lend to at least 200 businesses. Lending just £1,000 (the minimum initial transfer) now allows investors to lend to at least 100 businesses, which we believe provides a strong level of diversification. For example, 93% of investors who have diversified like this for at least a year are earning 4% or more.

Please note your existing loan parts will not be affected and this will only affect new loans you lend to. If you lend more than £4,000 you will see no change as our lending tool will lend more than £20 (0.5% of your portfolio) to each business. By lending to businesses, your capital is at risk.

If you have any questions on today’s news, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Enjoy lending,

The Funding Circle team

Our new partnership with Just A Card


Funding Circle was born from the belief that when small businesses succeed, everyone benefits. I’m proud that we have been able to help more than 42,000 British small businesses to get finance through Funding Circle since 2010. However, we know times are tough for independent businesses across the country, which is why I am delighted to announce that we’ll be supporting the Just A Card campaign.

Just A Card is a not-for-profit campaign run by the incredible Sarah Hamilton and her amazing team of volunteers up and down the UK. For the last three years, Just A Card has been working hard to help small businesses get vital extra sales by encouraging people to make a purchase – however small – through their window stickers, pins and posters. And it’s working! Independent retailers who have joined the campaign say that just reminding shoppers of this fact – that every sale counts – is making a difference. This simple yet powerful message highlights what we need to do to ensure our high streets remain full of thriving independent businesses instead of boarded up shops.

How it started

“I had a light bulb moment three years ago” tells Sarah, who founded the campaign “I read a quote from store owners who’d just shut up shop – “if everyone who’d complimented our beautiful gallery had bought ‘just a card’ we’d still be open”. I realised then that if we value our independent businesses, it’s not enough just to talk about them. We have to take action to support them.

I firmly believe that people cherish independent businesses and want to support them. However, sometimes they simply don’t recognise how valuable every purchase is. We’ve now got 3,000 businesses supporting our campaign with window stickers across the country. With Funding Circle’s help, we’re going to treble that number to over 10,000 by the end of the year. I’m so excited to be working with Funding Circle because they are just as passionate about supporting small businesses as we are.” 

Support independent businesses this Christmas

We’re going to be sending a window sticker pack to all the relevant small businesses in the Funding Circle community, encouraging them to support the campaign. Particularly in the run-up to Black Friday and Christmas, we want people to support their local independent shops, bookstores, cafes and businesses.

So watch out for a very special envelope landing on your doormat early next month. Display your window sticker with pride or pass it on to a local business, and do get involved with ‘Just A Card Indie Week’ November 19 – 23, by following @fundingcircleUK and @justacard on Instagram or visit for more details.

James Meekings – Funding Circle Co-founder and UK MD.

Add funds to get an iPad

For a limited time only, you’ll get a gift when you add £15,000 or more to your Funding Circle account!

What gift can I claim?

The gift you receive depends on how much you transfer into your account:

  • Add £30,000 to get an Apple iPad 32GB WiFi
  • Add £20,000 to get £200 John Lewis vouchers
  • Add £15,000 to get an Amazon Echo

What do I need to do?

Add enough funds to your account between 21:00 on Tuesday 16 October and 23:59 on Friday 16th November to get the gift you want. You also need to have lending switched on and keep the extra funds lent out until midnight on Wednesday 16th January 2019. We’ll then send your free gift to the address registered to your Funding Circle account.

Can I use my ISA and Classic accounts?

You can only claim one gift per person. If you only have an ISA account and have used up your ISA allowance, you can transfer existing ISAs you hold from other providers, or open a Classic account.

If you have both an ISA and Classic account registered to the same email address, you can split the extra funds between the two. However, if you withdraw from one and transfer to the other, you won’t qualify for a gift. We’ll look at the net amount added between the two.

If you’re transferring an ISA from another provider, we need to have received your ISA transfer form by 16th November for you to qualify.

Make sure your address is up to date

We will send your free gift to the address registered to your account. Please check your details are up to date by signing in to your account.

To claim your gift, sign in and add funds to your account today.  

For more information speak to our team on 020 7401 9111 or Terms and conditions apply. By lending to businesses your capital is at risk.

Enjoy lending!

The Funding Circle team

Saving for university – by Jasmine Birtles

Jasmine Birtles is a TV and newspaper journalist and personal finance expert. In her new column she’ll be helping you get the most from your investment and reach your personal goals.  

Passing the exams is the easy part. It’s saving for university that really hurts!

It costs the best part of £45,000 to do a three-year degree in the UK right now. That’s set to go up to at least £60,000 in the next ten years. So it’s not surprising that some parents start saving for their children’s university as soon as, or even before, their children are born.

However, even if you don’t have serious spare cash to put aside for your offspring’s education, there are ways to maximize the money you put in. Follow these steps and you’ll be able to help your kids even with limited resources.

Make full use of the JISA

Obviously the more tax you can save on your investments the better, so use ISA allowances as much as possible when saving for university.

Each child has an annual JISA (Junior Individual Savings Account) limit of £4,250 per tax year until they turn 18. Even if you don’t have that much to put in each year, just investing regular, small amounts each month will mount up if you put it in the right products.

Happily, children have time on their side when it comes to investing. If you start when they’re babies they have a good 18 years for the investment to grow, so you can use a stocks and shares (equity) JISA for them. The returns on these products are much higher than you would get on the average bank or building society cash version. Simple index tracking funds tend to be the cheapest and often the best performing. Encourage the grandparents, friends and other family members to add to the pot at birthdays and Christmas.

Of course, the JISA is in your child’s name and it’s not certain that they will use it for university by the time they get their hands on it at age 18. But if you spend some time educating them in the value of saving and help them to respect money then, even if they don’t go to university, they will still know to put that cash into something sensible once they come of age.

Take out your own Innovative Finance ISA

You also can take out an ISA for yourself and you have an annual limit of £20,000 per tax year. There are a few ISAs to choose from now including the Innovative Finance ISA which enables you put money into an online lending platform, such as Funding Circle, within an ISA wrapper. So any gains you make with your lending come to you tax-free.

If you put your money into the Funding Circle ‘Balanced’ ISA, that has a projected return of 6-7%. Then a monthly deposit of just £170 at 6% annual return, would give you £66,000 in 18 years, and that doesn’t even use up your whole ISA allowance.

Beware of ‘specialist’ products

There are, of course, investment products specifically designed for parents looking to save for their child’s university costs. Some of these may do well but on the whole you should be suspicious of any financial product that has clearly been packaged up for, and advertised to, a particular market. These products often have high fees attached to them and tend to be more about the marketing than the market.

Some Friendly Societies offer specialist products like these but their fees tend to be high. Similarly, well-known investment firms offer specialist products that involve a choice of managed investment trusts that you could put your money into. Usually the minimum monthly investment is £25 or £250 one-off lump sum. Again, though, watch their fees as managed funds are generally more expensive than simple index-tracking funds.

Get the kids saving for university too

One of the best ways to help your kids cope financially when they get to university is to encourage them to earn and save while they are teenagers. They really need the help too, as research by the savings association TISA has found that three in five 14-16 year olds borrow money to pay for something, even though four in five of those surveyed receive pocket money and a third of them have a part time job.

So start by helping them get a Saturday job in a local tea shop, car wash or supermarket. Help them fill in application forms, take them to the interview and even contact potential employers yourself. Then help them set up their own savings accounts, showing them how their money can grow over time if they leave it there. If you have the money you could even promise to match any savings they accumulate once they get to university.

For more information

To find out more about the Funding Circle ISA visit

Your actual return may be higher or lower and your capital is at risk. The tax-free entitlement of an ISA depends on your individual circumstances and may change.

The views expressed here belong to the author and do not represent those of Funding Circle. Funding Circle is not authorised to, and does not, provide investment, tax, legal or regulatory advice.

The information and views contained here are provided solely for informational purposes and should not be construed as legal, tax, regulatory, accounting or investment advice, or as a recommendation or an offer or invitation by Funding Circle.

To the extent permitted by law, Funding Circle does not accept any liability for any loss or damage which may arise directly or indirectly from the use of, or reliance on, such information contained here.

If you have any questions, please speak to your professional adviser or seek independent specialist advice.

Funding Circle lists on the London Stock Exchange

We are pleased to announce that we are now a public limited company (plc) and are listed on the London Stock Exchange. This is the next stage in our exciting journey to help thousands more small businesses access the finance they need to grow, and to provide investors with a better deal.

Today’s news is an exciting moment for the company, but we wanted to reiterate that your lending experience will not be affected in any way.

If you have any questions about your experience at Funding Circle, please get in touch.

Enjoy lending,

The Funding Circle team