ROYAL Bank of Scotland is set to launch a digital platform that it said would allow small and medium sized businesses to quickly obtain unsecured loans of up to £150,000.

The service, which will be called Esme Loans, claims to give a fast decision on lending applications which, if successful, will result funding arriving potentially within an hour.

The platform was borne out of an ‘innovation cell’ which saw Royal Bank of Scotland’s NatWest division working with fintech firm Ezbob to develop Esme in response to the emergence of direct and peer-to-peer lending platforms.