Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans (CBILS)

We are not accepting applications for CBILS at the moment. Applications will reopen soon.

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Ask Inclusive Finance (AskIf) is a CBILS accredited lender. We can offer CBILS loans from £50,000 to businesses that have been trading for a minimum of 12 months. We are an inclusive lender that combines a ‘human touch’ customer approach with tech to deliver a streamlined customer experience.

AskIf’s underwriting process is heavily skewed towards assessment of affordability and understanding borrower circumstances to establish suitability.  Lending managers support the borrower through the application process and help applicants fill in the ‘data gaps’ to unlock approval.  AskIf is focussed upon helping borrowers unable to secure finance from mainstream banks and online lenders.

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The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) has been significantly expanded along with changes to the scheme’s features and eligibility criteria. The changes mean even more smaller businesses across the UK impacted by the Coronavirus crisis can access the funding they need. Insufficient security no longer a condition to access the scheme. Importantly, access to the scheme has been opened up to those smaller businesses who would have previously met the requirements for a commercial facility but would not have been eligible for CBILS. This significantly increases the number of businesses eligible for the scheme. The expanded scheme will be operational with lenders from Monday 6 April 2020.

To be eligible for an AskIf facility under CBILS, a smaller business must:

  • Be a UK based Limited Company .
  • Trading for a minimum of 12 months.
  • Have a borrowing proposal which, were it not for the current pandemic, would be considered viable .
  • Self-certify that it has been adversely impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19).


CBILS supports a wide range of business finance products, including:

  • Term loans
  • Overdrafts
  • Asset finance
  • Invoice finance

Not every lender can provide every type of finance listed. AskIf provides Term Loans only

New Scheme features

Full details can be found at: www.british-business-bank.co.uk/CBILS

AskIf can provide a CBILS loans from £50,000 on repayment terms up to four years.

  • No personal guarantees are required.
  • The Government will pay interest for the first 12 months
  • There is no fee for SMEs to access the scheme.
  • The borrower always remains 100% liable for the debt.

CBILS is available through the British Business Bank’s 40+ accredited lenders and partners, which are listed on the British Business Bank website. Businesses should approach their own provider, ideally via the lender’s website. They may also consider approaching other lenders if they are unable to access the finance they need. Not every accredited lender can provide every type of finance available under CBILS.

Decision-making on whether a small business is eligible for CBILS is fully delegated to the 40+ accredited CBILS lenders. These lenders range from high-street banks, to challenger banks, asset-based lenders and smaller specialist local lenders.

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The scheme can provide facilities ofup to £5m for UK smaller businesses (SMEs) who are experiencing increased costs or disruptions to their cashflow.

The scheme provides the lender with a government-backed guarantee, potentially enabling a ‘no’ credit decision from a lender to become a ‘yes’. SMEs from all sectors can apply for the full amount of the facility.

How does a small business apply for a CBILS-supported facility?

A UK-based smaller business that is experiencing lost or deferred revenues, leading to disruptions to their cashflow, needs funding.


The business must have a borrowing proposal which, were it not forthe COVID-19 pandemic, would be considered viable by the lender, and for which the lender believes the provision of finance will enable the business to trade out of any short-to-medium term difficulty.


The government, operating through the British Business Bank, guarantees 80% of the facility balance to the lender, which may enable a ‘no’ credit decision to become a ‘yes’.


The lender, using the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, can now offer the finance facility requested, providing all other lending criteria can be met. The Government will make a Business Interruption Payment to cover the first 12 months of interest payments and any lender-levied fees, so smaller businesses will benefit from no upfront costs and lower initial repayments.


The business now has the finance it needs to sustain its operations during this period of uncertainty. The business remains liable for paying 100% of the outstanding facility.


Got a question? Email us at [email protected]

The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) is managed by the British Business Bank on behalf of, and with the financial backing of, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. Full details can be found at: