Financial risk insurer De Montfort has launched a new company called Credence to offer online credit insurance policies to small and medium-sized businesses.

Credit insurance covers a company's customer and supplier contracts against non-payment – a major reason why companies fail.

Credence is offering policies aimed at single customers rather than promoting a flat rate for the entire customer base. Customers will be able to obtain an instant premium online or though a call centre.

Policies for individual contracts of between £5,000 and £75,000 are offered for UK limited companies, partnerships and sole traders. Policies can be taken out for three, six, nine or 12 months.