How Qeld came into the world

The story of the small entrepreneur

Once upon a time, there was an enthusiastic young entrepreneur. He dreamed of starting a business. It was completely new, unknown and exciting territory. To begin with, he would have to have a bank account where he could deposit his hard-earned capital. Proudly, the entrepreneur went to the nearest bank to announce that he was going to open an account for his business and that he wanted to deposit €10,000 into it right away.

With great enthusiasm, the entrepreneur was telling the branch about his business plans, but the loyal banker suddenly asked why he had chosen to visit his bank. The entrepreneur found this a bit of a strange question, especially since the bank had been named "commercial bank of the year" in Sweden the year before, but anyway, the entrepreneur replied that he thought the bank could provide a good service for his business. After a 15-minute conversation, the entrepreneur was informed that the bank did not think his idea was good enough and that he could not be approved as a customer. That message felt as if a bucket of ice water had been thrown over him. How could that be possible? He didn't even want to borrow €10,000; he wanted to deposit it in the bank. Maybe he was not an entrepreneur at all. Maybe the bank teller was right... Fortunately, he did not give up and found another bank. One that understood much more.

This young man was me. Since then, I have learned that I am by no means the only one who has ever felt belittled by a bank. This infuriates me because eight out of every ten jobs are created by small businesses and the prosperity of society depends on this job creation.

We promote the creation and growth of new businesses. Today - 15 years later - I have become something called a "serial entrepreneur". I love constantly starting up new companies and kicking out outdated structures. First, the monopoly of Scandinavian telecoms has been challenged, later the monopoly of gambling in Sweden disappeared and now it is time to fight against the oligopoly of banks.

Having worked for many years, I have made contacts with good and talented bankers but for small new businesses there are hardly any open arms available at the bank branches - not to mention the need for more capital. Business loans can basically be forgotten if the company does not have many years of history and a turnover of at least one tonne. If you have not been in the same year club as the director, a lot of documentation is needed, such as a business plan, budgets and annual accounts. Many of these businesses are therefore forced to knock on the door of friends and family for growth funding. While banks are incredibly profitable and interest rates are historically low, the number of business loans has only gone down. Great! My thought was that this was a fantastic opportunity for a new company. At Qeld, we help smaller businesses grow and treat them with the respect and good service they deserve. A business loan simply shouldn't be more difficult than ordering a book online. If someone has a good idea, they should be able to get an answer to their loan application within minutes. Now we hope that we can help more and more small businesses and, perhaps, create a little more humility in the banks.

Emil Sunvisson, CEO and Co-Founder

Qeld (Qred Bank AB)

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