The deal by Dutch challenger bank bunq to buy Irish specialist business lender Capitalflow has been cleared by the Dutch regulator.

Established in 2016 and led by chief executive Ronan Horgan, Capitalflow provides flexible finance options through its digital platform to firms looking to grow and scale their business.

The Dublin based company employs around 70 people and has lent over €650m to a broad range of small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) across a range of sectors.

It said today's deal will lead to the creation of some 50 additional positions over the next three years.

Following the takeover, Capitalflow plans to advance over €1.2 billion in new lending over the next three years to Irish SMEs and property investors.

Ronan Horgan said that Captialflow has seen a considerable increase in demand for funding from Irish SMEs in the construction, distribution, rental, retail and manufacturing sectors in recent times.

"This merger is excellent news for our customers as, in the first instance, both Capitalflow and bunq have a shared "customer and user first" approach and access to bunq funding means we can offer more competitive terms," Mr Horgan added.

"Like bunq, Capitalflow has a laser focus on serving its users and values sustainability highly. Together, we look forward to expanding 'the bank of the free' across Ireland and the rest of Europe," said the CEO of bunq Ali Niknam.