Tembo – a London-based FinTech on a mission to transform consumer lending through the power of family – has closed a £2.5 million funding round.  

Following the digital broker’s official launch in June, the capital raise was led by investors including Aviva and Fair by Design – the venture fund managed by Ascension Ventures which in turn is backed by Nationwide, Big Society Capital and Joseph Rowntree. 

The startup’s mission is to address the ‘poverty premium’ and help millions of prospective homeowners buy their first property sooner. 

“The average first-time buyer is confronted by a number of significant obstacles on their route to homeownership, and for many these were thought of as insurmountable,” said co-founder and CEO Richard Dana.  

“We’re on a mission to change this mindset and help turn the tide on the generational wealth gap, by helping families work together to give first-time buyers a fast, affordable way to increase their deposit.  

“This funding will allow us to do that, and we’re incredibly happy that major players in finance and technology like Aviva and Fair by Design are joining us on this journey.”

Tembo’s product offering comprises a range of specialist mortgages from leading lenders in the UK which allow first-time buyers to lean on loved ones to help them climb on to the property ladder without requiring their families to have a cash lump sum. 

Deposit Boosts work by allowing a willing family member to unlock money from their existing property, using that capital to top up the first-time buyer’s deposit or create one from scratch.  

Income Boosts work by allowing a family member to allocate some of their income to the homebuyer’s mortgage application in order to increase their borrowing potential.