Bank finance has generated significant interest during the past two years in the wake of the financial crisis. ‘Supporting UK Businesses’, published on 14 October by the Business Finance Taskforce in association with the British Banking Association (BBA), aims to address the concern that banks are not adequately supporting viable businesses.
Noel Quinn, Head of HSBC UK CMB said that the report, “Is a significant milestone for UK businesses and we fully support the recommendations. Our lending position has not materially changed during the past two years and, compared to many competitors, our strong balance sheet has meant we have remained open for business throughout the financial crisis. That said, it’s also important to recognise that we must do all we can to responsibly support businesses. These recommendations are therefore a further positive step for all UK businesses and will help under-pin the UK’s recovery.”
The Business Finance Taskforce includes representatives from six UK banks, government and a number of trade bodies. In July, the Taskforce agreed to review the support banks provide to small and medium sized businesses and ensure UK businesses have access to secure and sustainable sources of finance.
The report makes 17 recommendations, listed fully in the BBA summary and report, which focus on three key areas:
- Maintaining better customer relationships
- Ensuring better access to finance
- Providing better information and understanding
This is obviously positive news for the UK franchising industry and HSBC fully supports the implementation of the recommendations during 2011.
Additional information about the Business Finance Taskforce can be found at: www.bba.org.uk/taskforce.