24/09/12

  • Six in ten businesses (59%) tell BCC that they would feel more confident in securing finance if Britain had a government-backed business bank or finance agency 
  • Announcement of £1bn funding by Vince Cable an important step in journey toward a fully-fledged British Business Bank 
  • Significant achievement for BCC campaign for creation of a business bank similar to those in other countries

Responding to the news that Vince Cable will announce a £1bn government commitment toward the creation of a business bank, John Longworth, Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce, said: 

“The government has taken a decisive step toward the creation of a British Business Bank by committing real money to get it off the ground.

“We are pleased that ministers are heeding our call to create a business bank that goes well beyond a re-badging of existing schemes. The funding announced by Vince Cable is the first step in a journey toward a British Business Bank that enables new and growing companies to get access to capital in the same way that they do in Germany, South Korea, and the USA.

“Six in ten Chamber members* told us just last week that they would feel more confident in securing finance if Britain had a government-backed business bank. So many companies will be encouraged by today’s news.

“However, there are a number of challenges that need to be addressed to ensure the business bank can support the real economy. At least initially, the business bank will have to work through existing lenders, which could put off some companies who still do not believe that the high-street banks will help them access the capital they need to grow. We also need to better understand how taxpayers' cash will be used to unlock additional funds for business lending from the markets. And given the fact that growing companies need access to capital for the long term, the funding announced today must be the first, not the last, sum destined to support business lending at this new institution.”

Ends

Notes to editors:

*The British Chambers of Commerce conducted a snap poll of members on access to finance issues between Monday 17th and Thursday 20th September 2012.

1,557 companies responded to the question “How much more confident would you be in securing finance if the UK had a national, government-backed business bank/financing agency?”

  • 395 (25.4%) said “a lot more confident”
  • 523 (33.6%) said “somewhat more confident”
  • 489 (31.4%) said “no different to how I feel now”
  • 16 (1.0%) said “somewhat less confident”
  • 22 (1.4%) said “a lot less confident”
  • 112 (7.2%) said “don’t know”

Further results from this snap poll will be released by BCC in the coming weeks.

 BCC's own proposals in favour of a British Business Bank were published on 3rd September 2012 and can be accessed here:

http://www.britishchambers.org.uk/press-office/press-releases/bcc-sets-out-proposals-for-a-british-business-bank.html

Media contacts

Liz Larvin
T: +44 [0]20 7654 5813
M: +44 [0]7825 746812
l.larvin@britishchambers.org.uk

Lisa Morrison
T: +44 [0]20 7654 5812
M: +44 [0]7717682221
l.morrison@britishchambers.org.uk