SME Finance Charter
UK banks and finance providers are being urged to sign up to the SME Finance Charter. This aims to provide businesses who rely on external finance with more clarity and transparency in navigating the changing business climate that lies ahead.
Covering loans and overdrafts, asset finance, stock lending and invoice finance, the SME Finance Charter is a pledge to let businesses know what support is available from external finance providers.
Unsurprisingly, Brexit preparedness features heavily, but potentially more interesting is a commitment to signpost a business to alternative finance options should their application be declined.
The five key pledges and what they mean for businesses are:
- We’re open for business and ready to lend.
The lender will describe their offer to businesses, including the type of applications they are looking to support
- We’ll help you prepare for Brexit and beyond.
The lender will provide fact sheets, videos, face-to-face workshops, web resources and much more
- We’ll support your application and signpost other options if needed.
The lender will explain what needs to go into an application and explain options if this is declined.
- We’ll treat you fairly at all times.
The lender will provide an explanation of their commitment to fairness and how they will resolve any disputes
- We’ll work with the government-owned British Business Bank to support SMEs.
The lender will make businesses aware of and/or explain how the British Business Bank is dedicated to making finance markets work better for small and mid-sized businesses
To see if your lenders have signed up to the SME Finance Charter, check the list here