NewTech Friday: creditshelf – Shaping digital SME financing

SME Banking
24/11/2023 Interview
profile picture of Daniel Bartsch

Daniel Bartsch

Creditshelf

Co-founder and CFO

In this interview, we sit down with Daniel Bartsch, Co-Founder and CFO of creditshelf, Germany's leading digital SME financer, to discuss the company’s inception and their mission to provide fast and accessible loans to small and medium-sized enterprises, as well as their future plans to expand their offerings and funding base to better serve their customers.


What led to the creation of creditshelf?

My co-founder and I spent many years of our careers in banking. During this time, we noticed that rapidly available, unsecured financing was difficult to obtain for a large proportion of small and medium-sized enterprises in Germany. Yet they are the heart of the German economy and rely on these funds to generate growth and thus labor and prosperity for everyone. The processes in traditional bank lending are often lengthy and manual. For entrepreneurs, there is nothing more frustrating than spending months discussing new financing with the bank, and potentially receive a rejection and have to start all over again – or even lose the contract they originally wanted the loan for. 

With digitalization looming decades ago, we figured that somehow SME lending had to work without collateral, efficiently and digitally – that's what finally drove us both to found creditshelf in 2014. Since then, our goal has been to run the entire credit process via our digital financing platform. At the heart of this is our unique, data-driven risk analysis, which helps our credit analysts make informed decisions quickly. The unsecured loans are then financed by professional and institutional investors who are well placed to assess the risk-return profile. And it is the customer who ultimately benefits from this setup, as we can provide an initial feedback on the financeability of their project within 48 hours.

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