A group of senior industry figures are leading plans to create a new £1 billion fintech fund to accelerate the growth of promising UK scale-ups, Sky News has learned.
Lord Hammond, the former chancellor, is among a host of heavyweight figures being enlisted to back the new venture, which has been provisionally named the Fintech Growth Fund. Other names cited include fintech veteran Al Lukies and the Fintech Alliance's Phil Vidler.
Hammond already acts as an advisor to UK crypto startup Copper and challenger OakNorth Bank.
City sources told Sky News that the fund would seek to raise capital from institutional investors and be independent of the government.
Companies including Barclays, London Stock Exchange Group and Mastercard are said to have been approached about providing small amounts of seed funding to get the new vehicle operational.
The war chest would aim to plug a gap in funding identified by Ron Kalifa as part of his Government-backed review into UK fintech.
"With a £2bn fintech growth capital funding gap in the UK, many entrepreneurs prefer to sell rather than continue to build their promising company," his report said. "There is £6trn in UK private pension schemes alone, a small portion of which could be diverted to high growth technology opportunities like fintech."
The aim would be to provide funding to companies as they progress beyond the Series B stage of capital raising, when they typically seek to raise tens of millions of dollars to 'scale up' their operations.
Insiders approached by Sky News said plans were being assembled for an announcement about the fund's launch as soon as this autumn.