Major Singapore banks launch SGD $500m Venture Debt Programme for high-growth SMEs

Following the various new funding schemes announced since beginning of 2016 to support local Singapore Fintech sector and other smaller SMEs which are under-funded, the major banks of OCBC, DBS and UOB have stepped up further efforts with another new programme called VDP, the Venture Debt Programme, an initiative spearheaded by SPRING Singapore.


It’s a SGD $500 million initiative designed to help local high-grow enterprises, with a goal of catalysing about 100 loans over two years, and loan quantum of up to SGD $5 million per applicant.


Below are the major SME eligibility criteria for a loan with DBS, OCBC and UOB respectively, of which OCBC has the most lenient criteria. Does your start-up qualify?


OCBC criteria

  • Companies do not need to be backed by a venture capital firm
  • Accepts companies from all industries:
  • That have proven track records and business models
  • That demonstrate high growth potential e.g. introduction of innovative products, deployment of unique business models and/or have strong potential for growth in international markets


DBS criteria

  • Minimum 1 year of incorporation with at least 1 round of institutional funding
  • Commercial revenues with proven business model
  • Backed by a reputable venture capital firm that has demonstrated good investment strategy and exits
  • Quality of the venture capital firm
  • Strong background and experience of the founding / management team
  • Disruptive technology and breakthrough value propositions based on innovation
  • Clear competitive advantage and sustainable business model


UOB criteria

  • Early stage local enterprises which have high growth potential and a viable business model
  • These companies would have developed innovative solutions or are operating in nascent sectors such as the advanced manufacturing, clean technology and biomedical industries


For more detailed reading, please see the official announcement by SPRING Singapore:


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