Virgin Money launches Europe’s first sustainability-linked loans

People sitting at the Virgin Money Manchester store
Virgin Money
Natalie Clarkson
by Natalie Clarkson
24 March 2021

Do you run a sustainable business? You may be able to take advantage of Virgin Money's new loans that make borrowing cheaper for sustainable businesses. Virgin Money is the first bank in Europe to offer sustainability-linked loans.

Virgin Money worked with Future-Fit Foundation to come up with the methodology behind these new loans. Businesses will have to answer a series of questions, which will assess their current sustainability performance and help companies to make further progress. This questionnaire will give businesses an objective assessment of how they’re doing in terms of sustainability. A digital version of the survey will be available for customers and non-customers alike on the Virgin Money website when the SLLs launch in late spring. 

For eligible customers borrowing at least £250,000 with a sufficiently strong assessment, the SLLs provided by Virgin Money will have no arrangement fee. Virgin Money has committed that 5% of all business loans will be to firms driving environmental and social change by September 2022.

The Virgin Money Manchester store
Virgin Money

Graeme Sands, corporate and mid-market director, Virgin Money, said: “While businesses overwhelmingly recognise the importance of sustainability, many – especially SMEs – struggle to translate good intentions into a clear plan and are worried about the cost and time involved in implementing an ESG programme.

“This is why we partnered with Future-Fit Foundation, to help SMEs and other businesses manage and measure sustainability. The benchmarking tool enables us to identify those businesses with capabilities that proactively drive other companies or consumers to create a more sustainable society and the loans will help these companies grow faster and help relieve some of the cost pressure. We firmly believe that we, and other banks, have a duty to direct capital responsibly.”

To highlight why SMEs should prioritise sustainability and provide other banks with advice on how they can help, Virgin Money and Future-Fit Foundation have published a case study report that shares more information on the assessment tool. It can be downloaded from the Virgin Money website.

Virgin Money also recently announced a partnership with Virgin StartUp to help businesses that are just starting out

Visit Virgin Money to find out more.