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Awards for Excellence

Western Europe’s best bank for SMEs 2021: HSBC

HSBC, with big operations in the UK and France as well as a presence on the ground in 20 markets across Europe, wins the award for the region’s best bank for small and medium-sized enterprises this year, against strong challenges from UniCredit and Santander.

In March 2021, HSBC launched a record £15 billion loan fund to finance recovery for UK businesses. Peter McIntyre, head of small business banking at HSBC UK, says: “We were quick to react to the introduction of the government loan schemes to support businesses, lending more than £15 billion and granting 18,000 capital repayment holidays to our customers when they needed it most. We worked hard to be accessible, opening over 71,000 accounts for non-customers, enabling access to the Bounce Back Loan scheme.”

That was unusual. Most banks struggled to cope with requests from existing customers and lacked capacity to onboard new ones.

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Peter McIntyre

Fintechs are renowned for their agility but HSBC’s people, inspired by chief executive Noel Quinn, showed their adaptability.

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