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HSBC to launch £450 million lending fund for SMEs

HSBC is to launch a £450 million lending fund to meet demand from small and medium-sized businesses in Scotland.

The fund, which will be the largest package of support for SMEs in the country, is an increase on the £400 million fund that the company provided for Scotland last year.

Strong desire

The package will feature a number of offers and tools for SMEs. Start-ups will receive a free banking offer of up to 18 months, whilst switchers will receive up to 12 months. A fixed monthly tariff of £5.50 and a reduction in the personal guarantee fee will also be introduced.

The company will also be launching an online tool, the Business Lending Eligibility Checker (BLEC), and a free text alert service on informal overdrafts as part of the package.

HSBC Head of Business Banking in Scotland, Susan Rowand, commented on the decision to launch the fund, stating that the company wants to be “the bank of choice” for SMEs in Scotland.

“There is a strong desire from ambitious local SMEs to grow their businesses, and we are responding by ensuring HSBC is providing the funds they need to realise these ambitions,” she said.

Driving force

HSBC Head of UK Commercial Banking, Ian Stuart, described SMEs as “the driving force of the UK economy”, and stated that HSBC is here to support them, whether they are a start-up company or an established business.

He added that the fund strengthens the company’s support by placing SMEs in a stronger position to make investments that will “stimulate local economies and create more jobs.”

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