New online funding market is proving to be a gem for jewellery maker Lucy Sherwood

A new online funding market where lenders compete for the chance to back businesses is being launched this month. 

Business owners visiting answer a few questions about their needs and potential lenders respond with individual quotes, bidding for the chance to lend. 

Former speech writer Lucy Sherwood, 30, is using the site to find funding for her jewellery business.  Sherwood, who started Rock and Raw last autumn, said: ‘My boyfriend paid for me to do a half-day jewellery course as a present and I loved it. I made pieces for friends. One day Mel B saw my yoga instructor wearing my jewellery and wanted some. 

‘I was approached by the Four Seasons clothing brand, who had seen my Instagram, and now I have a contract with them. ‘But I need to invest in stock. I never intended to have a firm and I am not up on finance. I filled in details on the site about what I am looking for and why, and got a couple of quotes. I am now making a decision.’ 

Co-founder Katrin Herrling, a former management consultant, compared FundingXchange to price comparison websites, and said: ‘We bring the same benefits to a market where shopping around previously consumed a huge amount of time and energy. 

We have done all the legwork so it is easy for businesses to get quotes from a range of lenders.’

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