Skip to main content


Starling Bank supporting small businesses through the Bounce Back Loan Scheme

7th May 2020

  • Starling accredited by the British Business Bank as a BBLS lender

  • Fixed interest rate at 2.5%

  • Loans are interest and fee free for the first 12 months

Update 31 March 2021: In line with the government’s announcements, this scheme ended on 31st March. Starling is no longer accepting applications for CBILS loans. Starling plans to continue to support SMEs. We are currently in discussion with the BBB to offer Starling SMEs the government’s Recovery Loan Scheme.

LONDON 7 May 2020: Starling, the digital bank, has been accredited by the British Business Bank as a lender under the government-backed Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS). This will enable it to offer term loans of between £2k and £50k to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that are struggling financially as a result of the coronavirus emergency. Applications will open on Monday 11th May 2020 via Starling’s secure online banking platform.

Under BBLS, the rate of interest is fixed at 2.5%. The loan will be interest free for the first 12 months, as the interest will be claimed by Starling, on customers’ behalf, from the government. So businesses will benefit from no upfront costs and no repayments in the first year.

SMEs can borrow up to a maximum of 25% of their annual turnover. No personal guarantees will be required, so borrowers and guarantors will not have to put up their principal private residence as security. The loan term is six years, but customers can pay back the loan sooner with no early repayment charge.

SMEs can apply for a Starling BBLS term loan, if their business:

  • Uses Starling as their main business account

  • Has been negatively impacted by coronavirus

  • Was established and trading by 1 March 2020 (inclusive)

More details about Starling’s BBLS criteria can be found on the Starling Bank website.

The BBLS provides lenders with a 100 per cent government-backed guarantee.

Helen Bierton, Starling Bank’s Chief Banking Officer, said: “We know there is high demand for these loans from businesses that are struggling and we expect that our simplified application process will free up cash within days. We’re delighted to be working with the British Business Bank as a BBLS lender.”

Notes to editors

BBLS is managed by the British Business Bank on behalf of, and with the financial backing of the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

Full details on BBLS and the list of participating lenders can be found on the British Business Bank website.

Borrowers will be required to open a Starling business bank account to set up the loan. Applying for an account takes minutes.

About Starling Bank

Starling Bank is a digital bank based in the UK. Its banking app offers personal, business, joint and euro current accounts on Android and iOS. The Starling Marketplace offers customers in-app access to a selection of third-party financial services. Starling also offers B2B banking and payments services.

It has opened more than 1.3m accounts, including 150,000 business accounts. Since launching its SME accounts in March 2018, it has become the UK’s fastest-growing business bank.

Headquartered in London, with offices in Southampton and Cardiff, Starling is a fully licensed and regulated bank, founded by Anne Boden, former Allied Irish Banks COO, in 2014.


Alexandra Frean, Head of Corporate Affairs
+44 7973 668363

Apply for a Starling bank account today and enjoy app-based banking at its best.

Start your application