Developing new products and services to address market gaps

The general lack of investment in serving customers in vulnerable circumstances means there’s relatively little innovation in product and market development to ensure current and evolving needs are met. We want to ensure that the right products and services are developed for this customer group and there are systems in place to support ongoing growth.

So we’re working with partners to design, pilot and scale affordable and inclusive financial solutions specifically for people in vulnerable circumstances.

We’ve teamed up with Fair By Design and Toynbee Hall to deliver a UK wide No Interest Loan Scheme (NILS) pilot with funding from HM Treasury and JPMorgan Chase, and lending capital from each of the devolved administrations.

We’ll also work with providers on other product pilots, including solutions aimed at tackling problem debt, reducing appliance poverty and increasing resilience, including through savings and insurance products.

If you are interested in developing new products and services for these customer groups please email us at

No Interest Loan Scheme pilot

We’re making good progress on rolling out the UK wide No Interest Loan Scheme (NILS) pilot with Fair By Design and Toynbee Hall.

We were delighted that JPMorgan Chase committed £1.2m to expand the pilot to more people in vulnerable circumstances and test the benefits of providing additional financial coaching support for some NILS  customers.

Ahead of the full pilot, we’ve been running a small proof of concept pilot with South Manchester Credit Union which is providing us with some valuable early learnings.

Early indications from the proof of concept suggest that by offering a way to spread essential or emergency costs NILS loans are providing a vital financial cushion for people unable to access or afford existing forms of credit, but who can afford to repay small sums.

The full pilot, launching this autumn, will deliver support to people in financially vulnerable circumstances across the UK and test whether the scheme can be scaled to make resources go further to improve financial wellbeing.

Millions more people became financially vulnerable during Covid and millions more are at risk because of the increasing cost of living, requiring urgent support – the pilot will target such people.

We’ve had lots of interest in our NILS pilot since the publicity recently on Moneybox and other channels. There is scope for us to extend the pilot and if you’re interested in delivering NILS as a pilot partner please get in touch with Kate Pender at

Consolidation loans

Our plans to pilot affordable consolidation lending are developing rapidly. Many lenders we’ve spoken to consider this an important product offering for the cost of living squeeze and we’ve received an additional £4m funding from Dormant Assets to use in this area.

We are currently designing a partial bad debt guarantee to enable more of this lending to be piloted and we’d like to work with lenders on the delivery.

If you are interested in contributing to the design of the pilot and/or in participating in the pilot please contact Vince Cox at