American Express has partnered with FinTech platform ezbob to offer selected small-to medium-sized UK business customers fast, secure and competitive access to finance.

Through the partnership eligible American Express business clients will receive a referral to apply for up to £300,000 in finance from ezbob at a competitive, fixed annual interest rate from three per cent per year.

With its streamlined, fully managed digital lending proposition for financial institutions, online financing platform ezbob will enable eligible American Express SME UK business customers to access quick, reliable and paper-free credit.

Using the online calculator, companies seeking fast access to finance can apply for a loan in ten minutes and, if successful, receive funds on the same day.

"We know agility is crucial for smaller businesses to help retain a competitive advantage but accessing the finance needed to react swiftly to changing customer demands, or seize an opportunity, can be a challenge," said senior VP of global commercial services at American Express Carlos Carriedo.

"Building on the existing support we offer businesses to help them manage payments across the entirety of their supply chains, we've teamed up with ezbob to explore offering our customers low cost access to new capital, which can help keep their business moving.

"We're committed to helping UK businesses to ensure they can capture growth opportunities – whether that’s investing in headcount, optimising seasonality, refurbing premises or simply funding a large order."

American Express and Oxford Economics recently conducted a global study of senior executives of 3,000 SMEs, which revealed that while UK SMEs remain confident, a significant number (24 per cent) struggle to access finance to help grow and support their business.

The research highlighted that hidden fees, a lack of flexible repayment options and lengthy application processes are among the greatest challenges for small businesses looking to access finance or capital.

Tomer Guriel, founder and CEO of ezbob, added: "We are very excited about the opportunities our partnership with American Express represents for our respective firms.

"Their decision to partner with us to offer their UK customers a new way to access short-term finance reflects ezbob's advanced functionality and the rapid implementation capabilities of the platform delivered through a fully managed support model.

"Providing streamlined access to financing for SMEs was a founding principle for developing the ezbob platform."