BNP Paribas Asset Management (BNPP AM) has acquired a 10% stake in Caple, an alternative SME credit specialist, for an undisclosed sum.

BNPP AM purchased the stake through its incubation fund. Caple offers unsecured loan services ranging from £500,000 to £5m with terms of five to eight years, targeting firms across the UK, Netherlands and Germany.

The proprietary technology platform facilitates end-to-end credit application integrating origination by local partner networks of accountancy and advisory firms with credit assessment by its credit analysis teams.

The stake purchase forms part of BNPP’s launch of its SME Advanced Solutions platform, which is an initiative within its private debt and real assets investment group headed by David Bouchoucha.

The open architecture platform distributes loans to institutional investors across Europe after sourcing them from banks and fintech firms. The platform is supported by the infrastructure provided by partner firms like Caple.

BNPP AM head of SME advanced solutions Stephane Blanchoz said: “This alliance combines the needs of BNP Paribas Asset Management’s investors with Caple’s expertise as an originator of SME loans. The trend towards disintermediation and the growing need for SME funding creates opportunities for lending platforms, such as SME Advanced Solutions, that can offer alternative credit as a complementary source of finance alongside traditional bank lending.”