New lender for agriculture sector set to launch

A new lender dedicated to agriculture is being launched later this year. Oxbury Bank with the first bank to be exclusively focused on agriculture since the AMC was created in 1928.

The launch comes at an unsettling financial period for farmers, amid the knock-on effects of the coronavirus pandemic and the post-Brexit future of subsidies and markets for UK food products still being unclear.

The newly licensed Oxbury Bank, based in Chester, aims to provide farmers with the specialised lending they need to run their farms and provide savings accounts to any individuals or business that want to support British farmers and UK agriculture.

Oxbury’s co-founders include Chief executive James Farrar, who was among the founding team of start-up clearing bank ClearBank; Nick Evans, founder of the agricultural technology company Adaptris; and Timothy Coates, a former official at the Financial Conduct Authority, who also runs a family farm.

With this leadership team, the bank understands the agricultural sector and the challenges that farmers face and uses its industry knowledge and proprietary technology platform to make quick and appropriate decisions on credit facilities.

The bank’s flagship lending product, Oxbury Farm Credit, will be a revolving credit facility to fund working capital. This will provide farmers with a flexible, convenient and competitive alternative to a bank overdraft or trade finance.

The bank also provides flexibility, as farmers will be able to access all their lending and savings accounts 24 hours per day via the bank’s secure online platform and mobile app.

Oxbury will focus initially on larger arable and dairy farmers, offering both secured and unsecured lending. Further expansion across the UK, across agricultural sectors, and with further input suppliers will take place in the coming months.

Stuart Roberts, deputy president of the National Farmers’ Union, said: “More competition to serve farmers is always really good. The guys behind Oxbury Bank are well known in agricultural circles so there is clearly a good degree of expertise and we look forward to having another financial institution to serve our sector.”

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