Scotcash Ministerial Visit

Posted by: Eden Morrison on September 13 2018 | Tagged: General news

On Thursday the 30th of August, Scotcash were pleased to welcome a Ministerial visit to their Glasgow office.

 

John Glen the Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Guy Opperman the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Pensions and Financial Inclusion, and Councillor Thomas Kerr visited the main Scotcash office at 55 High Street Glasgow. Sharon MacPherson, Scotcash CEO, and Stephen Henderson, Scotcash Chair hosted the visit which included a discussion around the challenges surrounding financial inclusion and the work being done by organisations such as Scotcash in this arena.  

 

It was clear that there was a real appetite and willingness to have financial inclusion at the top of the Ministers agenda and they were extremely interested in the details surrounding both the recent growth evidenced in the sector, but also in the challenges Scotcash and others like them face on a daily basis. There is rising need and demand for the services provided, however there are also many barriers and issues which must be addressed,  to enable the small responsible finance organisations like Scotcash to move forward and ensure sustainability and commercial viability.

 

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Left to Right: Sharon MacPherson, John Glenn, Steven Henderson, Guy Opperman, Thomas Kerr. 

 

Many people still struggle to locate affordable credit options due to lack of visibility within the financial sector and it is difficult for smaller non-profit making organisations such as Scotcash to match the level of advertising that the larger financial players can easily access.

 

During the visit, the Ministers discussed the £55million which is being made available by the Government for financial inclusion and capability initiatives and it is hoped Scotcash will receive some of these funds in the future. The affordable credit and responsible finance sector would benefit greatly from Government support which will help to increase awareness, support innovation, and provide capital for growth.   

 

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Sharon MacPherson - Scotcash CEO, and John Glenn - Economic Secretary to the Treasury

 

With the current instability in the high-cost lending market caused by the demise of the likes of Wonga and the Money Shop, millions of customers will be at risk of falling into the grasp of illegal and unsafe money lenders as they are unaware of alternatives available to them. Ideally the affordable lending institutions like Scotcash should be able to plug the gap left by these recent high cost lending closures, however the demand from consumers is likely to outstrip the capacity of the smaller community interest companies, both in availability and the capital which they must have in reserve to be available to lend out. The support from government and those who have the ability to vastly increase the profile and standing of Scotcash and others in the sector is invaluable as is the possibility of funding to keep Scotcash firmly in view of all the consumers who are unable to access mainstream financial services and by default are forced into situations where they pay a poverty premium for obtaining credit or linked wrap around services which others can take for granted.