The Commercial Markets Association (CMA) spoke and, it appears, the banks might have been listening! HSBC is the latest commercial lender to up its game by launching a £10 billion lending fund to support our country’s small and medium-sized enterprises.
The fund is the largest package to be offered for SMEs by HSBC and follows on from their 2015 fund of £8 billion. It’s being offered to enterprises in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The scheme is part of the bank’s broader commitment to make banking simpler and cheaper for business customers and comes after a CMA investigation concluded that competition in the marketplace needs to be improved for business borrowers.
HSBC’s Head of UK Commercial Banking, Ian Stuart, said:
“SMEs are the lifeblood of the UK economy and at HSBC we are committed to providing the finance and support they need to realise their business goals.
“The launch of the £10bn fund signals our aspiration to lend more to UK SMEs of all sizes, whether they are a start-up or established business, focused either on the domestic market or looking to trade internationally.
“Right across the UK there is a wide range of innovative new and established SMEs, proving that location is no barrier to a great business idea. This fund underpins our support by putting SMEs in a stronger position to be making investments that will stimulate local economies and create more jobs.”
Just weeks ago Lloyds Banking Group released their plans to help thousands of UK small businesses to start exporting. The new package includes support and guidance and will also see the British bank increase financial lending to SMEs by £1 billion.
Head of Businesscomparison.com, Philip Brennan says it’s about time the banks addressed the needs of SMEs,
“Borrowing money from the banks to grow or even just stay afloat has been a major challenge for small businesses. This has been addressed, in part, by the emergence of alternative finance lenders, however there’s still a lot of work to be done to create a fair and competitive financial marketplace for commercial customers.
“The CMA has got the ball rolling in terms of making the banks think about the service they offer and these schemes are a step in the right direction, however there is still a long way to go to address the issue. At Businesscomparison.com we compare deals on bank accounts, loans, insurance and energy to help enterprises save time and money.”