The Startup Lowdown: Growth Street

Growth Street


Company: Growth Street

Age: 2 years

Website/Twitter: @GrowthStreetUK

Founders: Greg Carter @gregorycarter, Oliver Shapleski @olishapleski, George Mills @gfcmills, Joshua Green, Thomas Høegh and James Sherwin-Smith (@26left) who is our CEO, and though not a member of the founding team, has driven the business vision since joining over a year ago.

So what's the Elevator Pitch?

We provide small businesses banking without being a bank. Borrow working capital from 7.2% APR, invest extra cash and receive up to 6.5% AER, and (coming soon) get a free business current account.

What was your lightbulb moment?

We noticed a gap in the market for business overdrafts, and so we started by creating GrowthLine, a secure line of credit to finance working capital. We saw that businesses weren't earning a meaningful return when they had spare cash, and so we added a lender marketplace where they can earn up to 6.5% AER. And we know opening a current account for businesses is too difficult, so we're making it simple.

What makes you special?

All of our products are faster, simpler, and a better value than you'll receive elsewhere. We can provide a line of credit in days, not weeks or months. Our investment account pays a meaningful return, up to 6.5%. And we will be able to open a current account for a business in minutes, not weeks.

To make all of this work, we have to be great with data. And we make the information we have freely available back to our customers. We provide a free cash flow forecasting tool that any business can use by connecting their cloud accounting platform, and receive actionable insights that can make a meaningful difference in the growth of their business.

And in a previous life…

Growth Street began as an internal project by venture capital firm and company builder Arts Alliance. 

  • Greg Carter worked as an investor at Arts Alliance, and was previously at Betfair

  • Oliver Shapleski is Head of Business and Legal Affairs for Arts Alliance

  • George Mills is an investor at Arts Alliance

  • Joshua Green is Investment Director at Arts Alliance

  • Thomas Høegh is the founder of Arts Alliance and has been building and investing in technology and high growth companies for over 20 years.

  • James Sherwin-Smith was previously with MasterCard, and prior to that worked in payments and finance at Oliver Wyman

The headaches and growing pains...
Occasionally borrowers struggle to pay their debts. Our systems and data integrations allow us to quickly spot difficulties before they become problems, and we actively work with the business owners to find the best resolution possible, but it's always a difficult and challenging time, and one we try and avoid by communicating with business owners early and often.

Finish this sentence: I couldn’t live without…Entrepreneurs creating ideas, and then turning those ideas into businesses. We wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for them!


by Katherine Green on September 16, 2016

Topics: startups, interview, lowdown

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