Bank boosts lend­ing for small firms Speed of ac­cess to fi­nance can be vi­tal...

Yorkshire Post - Business - - BUSINESS / NEWS - Greg Wright DEPUTY BUSI­NESS ED­I­TOR @greg­wightyp

Bar­clays has dou­bled its max­i­mum amount for un­se­cured busi­ness loans for small and medium-sized en­ter­prises (SMEs) from £50,000 to £100,000.

The bank has also iden­ti­fied more than 40,000 SME clients in the UK that could be el­i­gi­ble for the higher lev­els of lend­ing, which could be in their ac­counts within days.

The move will help SMEs in York­shire get faster ac­cess to fi­nance, Bar­clays be­lieves it will help them to seize op­por­tu­ni­ties they might other­wise miss. Caro­line Pul­lich, Bar­clays

Busi­ness Bank­ing, Head of SMEs for York­shire, said “Many peo­ple think tak­ing a busi­ness loan is stress­ful, or they are put off by the per­ceived bu­reau­cracy and time in­volved.

“At Bar­clays, we are tack­ling this head-on, mak­ing small busi­ness lend­ing faster, sim­pler and eas­ier.

“Im­por­tantly, a busi­ness loan is a type of fi­nance that can re­ally trans­form a bril­liant, hard­work­ing com­pany, al­low­ing it to scale up and serve more peo­ple. Re­mov­ing bar­ri­ers to such in­vest­ment is good for firms across the coun­try, and for the econ­omy.

“Fur­ther­more, speed of ac­cess to fi­nance can be vi­tal in to­day’s en­vi­ron­ment. Busi­ness moves very fast, and firms can ac­cess larger op­por­tu­ni­ties at short no­tice thanks to dig­i­tal com­mu­ni­ca­tion.

“Un­se­cured lend­ing can also be par­tic­u­larly use­ful for cer­tain types of busi­ness. This in­cludes nim­ble firms that achieve high growth rates with­out own­ing premises that would serve as se­cu­rity for a loan, or those led by young en­trepreneurs who have a suc­cess­ful busi­ness but are yet to buy a home that could serve as se­cu­rity.”

Re­search con­ducted on be­half of Bar­clays also high­lighted the im­por­tance of ac­cess to fi­nance. Bar­clays’ sur­vey of SME busi­ness own­ers shows just how vi­tal speed is, with one in seven of those sur­veyed in York­shire say­ing they have lost out in the past be­cause they could not get a loan or fund­ing quickly.

The re­search also found that seven per cent of busi­ness own­ers sur­veyed in York­shire said they would be more likely to ap­ply for a loan if they could get a de­ci­sion within 24 hours, while nine per cent said the time it takes to get a loan puts them off ap­ply­ing. Prob­lems ac­cess­ing fi­nance are of­ten cited as a bar­rier to eco­nomic growth.

CARO­LINE PUL­LICH OF BAR­CLAYS BE­LIEVES THAT A BUSI­NESS LOAN CAN TRANS­FORM AN AM­BI­TIOUS COM­PANY

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