Aqiok, a managed B2B platform for prestige cosmetics distribution in key global markets, and Anglo-Canadian asset-based lender DND Finance, announced a multi-year agreement to develop a new app to provide well-needed lease financing to cosmetics manufacturers and brands in North America and Europe.

This agreement provides Aqiok with the financial service infrastructure that draws on DND’s nearly 20-years of operations to deploy a new app in its Omni Channel Platform (OCP) and app Product Line. From its operations in London, UK, DND will back-end service the origination of new financing requirements from Aqiok customers, whilst Aqiok ensures a superior customer experience (CX) for cosmetics manufacturers and brands.

“In the cosmetics space nearly 80 percent of producers are classified as small to medium size enterprises (SME),” said Matthew Keddy, CEO of Aqiok. “Utilizing our managed platform, we are in a unique position to introduce a new marketplace lending app with DND to meet that operational and growth needs of our customers.”

“We are pleased that we can bring our almost two decades of SME finance expertise in North America and Europe to this new partnership,” said Rev. Dr. Bill Dost, Group CEO of DND Finance. “Having implemented numerous contracts for clients and brokers successfully, we are confident we can meet or exceed the operational needs of Aqiok’s new lending app.”

According to British Business Bank in its 2017/18 “Small Business Finance Markets” report, they note that:

  • Marketplace lending, usually online, that links lenders and borrowers, continues to grow and according to AltFi Data, total lending in 2017 exceeded $6.07 billion in the UK, an increase of 45 percent year-on-year.
  • Marketplace lending represents 15 percent of the overall asset-based finance market, which reached a record level of $38.8 billion for 2018, in the market’s seventh year of consecutive growth.
  • A recent report from Euler Hermes notes a broader demand for lease financing, as “SMEs in Europe lack an estimated $448 billion of bank-financing.” Germany, France, UK, Italy, Spain, Netherlands, Poland and Sweden account for 78 percent of the European SME leasing market, and according to Leaseurope, nearly half of all SMEs utilize lease financing and leasing is used by more SMEs than bank loans.

“Ensuring each customer has an individualized cross channel strategy that spans our platform combined with new growth financing options is a key part of customer experience (CX) focus.” said Matthew Keddy, Aqiok CEO. “At scale internationally, the relationship with DND ensures we are delivering new apps in our product line that are high impact.”