Why it is important: When we make markets work better and help smaller business get finance that they otherwise wouldn’t get, we enable investment in hiring people, buying equipment, and general growth that benefits the entire UK economy.
The Bank’s total stock of finance grew 45% from £5.1bn to £7.5bn from March 2015 to April 2016. We did this by committing 75% more in 2015-16 as in the previous year. The increase was achieved against a backdrop of improving commercial conditions that resulted in accelerated repayments in our large Business Finance Partnership portfolios combined with lower than expected drawdowns.
Much of the increase came from our ENABLE programmes, which added a £100m lease finance facility with Hitachi Capital and a £51m facility for LDF under the ENABLE Funding programme, following a £125m guarantee facility for Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks towards the end of 2014-15. These deals also strongly support our diversity agenda as represented by our second KPI.
Our Enterprise Finance Guarantee continues to be a flagship debt intervention for the British Business Bank, and we expect changes to the programme to make it more widely accessible in 2016-17. Activity in our Investment Programme in a leading UK challenger bank, also increased our stock substantially.