Since the financial crisis of 2008, many mainstream banks have tightened the reins on their lending to small and medium-sized enterprises. As such, it can sometimes be difficult for companies that are just starting out or trying to expand to get the funding they need. Thankfully, a series of challenger brands have entered the market to fill this void. One such offering is Capital on Tap, offering business credit at the touch of a button. In our Capital on Tap review, we look at everything you need to know about the brand, how they work, and the service they provide.
Quick Look – Pros & Cons
Let’s start with some of the positives and negatives of Capital on Tap’s service. These quick-fire lists give you an overview of whether the service is the right choice for your business:
- The Capital on Tap website is simple to use, making the application process straightforward and quick. You can get a quote almost instantly.
- It’s free for you to get a quote, and doing so won’t affect your credit score.
- You can apply for multiple business credit cards, making it ideal for companies with multiple directors.
- There are no regular fees for using your account.
- Some of the features are only available to ‘premium’ paid customers.
- They don’t have a mobile app for their service, unlike many other providers.
- The service is not a complete business banking solution.
What is Capital on Tap?
Capital on Tap is a digital lender aimed at small UK businesses. The company was founded in 2012 and has since gone on to help over 50,000 businesses, funding more than £500 million. Capital on Tap don’t offer banking services – they provide credit and credit cards (Mastercard), powered by an online account. With your credit card, you make payments and withdraw cash from ATMs, and with the account, you can transfer funds to high-street bank accounts. When it’s time for repayments, Capital on Tap will collect the money via direct debit.
The company was founded in 2012 and has since gone on to help over 50,000 businesses, funding more than £500 million.
The service is simple and straightforward, although far from comprehensive in terms of business banking, yet it can be extremely valuable for small enterprises that are just starting out or beginning to expand.
How does Capital on Tap work?
One of the best things about Capital on Tap is that it’s so simple to get started with. You can apply for your business funding within a few short minutes and get a response almost instantly. Below, we’ve outlined how the application process works:
- Visit the Capital on Tap website and fill out the application form. It takes around two minutes to complete, and it won’t impact your credit rating. You’ll need to provide some information about your business, how long it’s been trading, and how much it makes.
- Wait for them to review your details. This usually only takes a matter of minutes, and you’ll get a response notifying you whether you’re eligible.
- Sign up for an account. If everything is acceptable with your application, you can create a login and account for your funds.
- Access your money. Your online funding is available immediately, and you’ll get your Business Mastercard within four working days.
Once you have access to your account and card, you can start using it just like a regular credit card. Make payments, transfer money, and withdraw cash, it’s all as you’d expect.
There are some Capital on Tap eligibility requirements that you’ll have to meet in order to start an account. First, your business will have to have a turnover of at least £2000 per month. You also can’t have any unsatisfied CCJs against your or your business in the last 12 months. Finally, you must be based in the UK.
What features does Capital on Tap have?
Despite being a simple premise, Capital on Tap actually offer some pretty useful features. Not only does it open up your options for securing funding for your business, but there are some additional bonuses the service provides:
- No hidden fees. You won’t find any foreign transaction fees, charges for withdrawing from ATMs, or monthly fees for using your account.
- Flexible interest. When you’re using your Capital on Tap account, you can get up to 56 days of interest-free on purchases. This applies providing you pay off your balance in full each month. You can improve your rates over time too, meaning that those who don’t pay off their balance each month will get an interest rate of 0.79% to 4.9% per month.
- Rewards club. You can pay for inclusion in the Capital on Tap rewards club. This will give you an uncapped 1% cashback on all card spends. You can redeem points with either Avios or cashback. The service costs an upfront annual fee of £199.
- Fast application. All of these features can be accessed by filling out an application form that takes around two minutes to complete.
are the f ees?
On the Capital on Tap website, they state that the cost of your funding depends on your interest rate and how long you want to borrow the funds for. To get an idea of your initial rate, you’ll have to complete an application online. However, it usually ranges from around 0.79% to 4.9% per month. Of course, if you pay off your balance each month, you could earn a 56-day interest-free period.
There are no fees for applying, and none for requesting a card, making ATM withdrawals or making non-sterling transactions. There’s no fixed monthly fee for having an account either. You will be charged a late fee if you make a payment outside of the agreed time. However, these fees aren’t advertised on their website.
Who is Capital on Tap for?
This is a service that’s very much aimed at small businesses in need of credit. Provided your monthly turnover is over £2000, you’ve a good chance of getting accepted for a Capital on Tap credit card. This makes it ideal for new companies that are getting started, or more established ones that are trying to grow.
Provided your monthly turnover is over £2000, you’ve a good chance of getting accepted for a Capital on Tap credit card.
If cash flow is becoming an issue for you, the flexibility of a relatively low-interest (or even interest-free) card is appealing. You may have upcoming purchases or transactions that you need to make, and want the added cushion and protection that a business credit card offers. Of course, you have to ensure that you have the funds to pay back any money you borrow. The monthly interest can soon mount up if you’re not making your repayments.
What are the drawbacks of using Capital on Tap?
Few services are entirely perfect, and Capital on Tap is no exception. There are a few downsides that are worth covering, allowing you to make an informed decision about the company. Here are some of the negatives of Capital on Tap:
- There’s no mobile app. Many challenger brands these days are built around an excellent mobile experience. It’s such a convenient way of managing your money on the go and keeping track of spending. Sadly, Capital on Tap doesn’t currently have an app, so everything has to be done via their website.
- Not all features are free. If you want to earn cash back on your purchases, you’ll have to sign up for a premium account, which costs £199 per year upfront.
- It’s not a complete banking service. You don’t get a current account or any of the other banking services you’ll need. Capital on Tap is a lender, so you’ll have to find another company to do your business banking with.
How safe is Capital on Tap?
The firm that own Capital on Tap, New Wave Capital Limited, is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority. They hold a business lending licence, but they cannot hold money. This makes it safe in terms of borrowing money from them.
The Capital on Tap website is secure and encrypted, and your passwords and sensitive data are not seen by their customer services. The Mastercard that you’re provided with is secured by a PIN.
Ultimately, Capital on Tap provides a valuable if slightly limited service. Small business owners will delight in the chance to apply for finance and a credit card, yet won’t have all of their banking needs met. However, that’s not the point of the company. They’re strictly lenders, and their no-nonsense approach to applications and fees is refreshing to see.
Overall, their rates are reasonable, particularly if you know you can pay off your balance in full each month. They do charge for premium features, but many customers will manage without these.