- AIM-listed specialist bank PCF Group has reported its lending portfolio grew to £338m, up 54% for the year ended 30 September, and is close to its £350m target, a year ahead of plan.

New business originations are 51% ahead of last year's £148m, at £223m and the quality of those originations has met management targets, with 74% being in its prime credit grades, up from 70% in 2018.

The group said it had 'continued to build on our success in the retail deposit market' and its deposit base increased to £265m, from £191m in 2018.

The bank's loan impairment charge remains unchanged from the 0.9% reported at the interim stage.

Following its acquisition of Azule, a provider of specialist funding services to the media industry, in October 2018, it originated £77m of new business in the eleven-month period and through its hybrid brokerage and 'own book' model generated fee income of £1m.

Chief executive Scott Maybury said: 'We have made excellent progress against ambitious targets and we continue to deliver strong growth despite the challenging economic and political backdrop.

'While there may well be some tightening of the economic cycle over the next 12 to 24 months, given the small market share we currently enjoy, we remain confident that we can continue to grow as planned whilst maintaining our prudent appetite for risk.'

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