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SME Finance to launch Lithuanian digital bank

SME Finance to launch Lithuanian digital bank

Baltic fintech startup SME Finance is planning to launch a neobank for small- and medium-sized enterprises in Lithuania.

SME Finance is already the biggest provider of non-banking business financing in the Baltic region.

Now it is taking the next step, preparing to launch, by the middle of next year, an online and app-based bank that will provide SMEs not only loans but also transfer and deposit services.

SME Finance CEO Mindaugas Mikalaj┼źnas says it took the decision to launch a bank now because, while SMEs are looking for help during the Covid-19 crisis, the "conservative" Scandinavian banks that dominate the local market are reluctant to lend.

The new player is promising competitive pricing, a faster and simpler servicing process and a modern IT platform with which it plans to serve about 5000 business clients.

While, the bank - which will operate as a separate legal entity from SEM Finance - is beginning life in Lithuania, it could expand to other Baltic states and Poland.

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