SoftBank-backed lender OakNorth Bank almost doubled its profits in 2019 but slowed down its pace of expansion as economic concerns discouraged business borrowing.
The five-year-old UK company maintained its record as one of the few so-called neobanks to generate a profit, reporting a pre-tax gain of £66m, compared with £34m the previous year.
Such has been OakNorth’s success, it now has around 144,000 savers – up from 28,000 as recently as 2018. It also says its loans have had a ‘significant impact on the British economy’ by enabling borrowers to create almost 12,000 new affordable and social homes and 17,000 new jobs.
Rishi Khosla, CEO and co-founder of OakNorth Bank, commented: “We built OakNorth to provide a better borrowing experience – borrowing the way it should be. In four years, we have been able to leverage OakNorth’s Platform to build one of the most successful new banks globally, and in doing so, help hundreds of UK businesses who have in turn created thousands of new homes and jobs. ”
“ Our model is proving that it’s possible to delight customers and put them at the heart of your business, whilst generating profitable and environmentally sustainable business. While I am humbled to see what we have accomplished in our first four years, this is only the beginning. I am excited to demonstrate the power of our Platform and continue to work with our partner banks around the world to enable businesses and economies to thrive.”
The challenger bank was valued at $2.8bn in a deal backed by Softbank’s Vision Fund last year. Oaknorth raised $390m from Softbank’s fund, with the remaining capital coming from Clermont.