Has B&Q become a builders' merchant?
Published: 10 December, 2012
The pilot will begin early next year through B&Q's Tradepoint business and Screwfix. Kingfisher will pay the government a 2% fee to underwrite the loan.
Kingfisher chief executive Ian Cheshire said that the retailer would get access to the government's balance sheet at a better rate than it would a bank. The move allows tradespeople to gain credit even if they would have been too small or too new to qualify under normal banking rules.
Mr Cheshire said: "By cutting out the banks, you can unlock that credit into the economy."
The scheme was introduced amid frustration over subdued lending to businesses.