Increase in lending to Yorkshire SMEs

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Santander’s corporate and commercial banking arm has increased its lending to small and medium sized businesses in Yorkshire by 43 per cent.

The bank says Yorkshire SMEs received £368 million-worth of new funding in the year to the end of September.

Neil Williams, Santander Corporate Banking’s Yorkshire regional director said: “There are some fantastic businesses in our region and we are proud to be providing not only funding but, more importantly, a committed long-term banking partnership with more of our local strong and growing companies.”

Marcelino Castrillo, head of SME banking, added: “We have invested in growing both our regional presence and our product range this year, and are committed to accelerating this investment in 2013 so we can better support the strong business communities in smaller towns and cities as well as in the key industrial hubs.”

Santander is eligible to receive £9.4 billion from the Government’s Funding for Lending initiative, which is designed to boost lending to households and businesses by allowing banks and building societies to borrow from the Bank of England for up to four years. The bank accessed the first tranche of £1 billion in July, which it is using to increase lending to smaller firms and reduce rates across its range of business banking products.

Santander has also taken on 24 new staff in the region, during 2012, to improve its service to businesses.