Santander is a signatory of the SME Charter, which was launched on 9 October 2019 by the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. This page sets out our commitments under the Charter.
- Santander has roots in the UK going back over 150 years. We understand the importance of SMEs and mid-sized businesses to the success of the UK and we’re committed to helping our customers achieve their ambitions.
- Over the last 12 months, our relationship teams have been in regular contact with their customers to reassure them that we’re open for business and that support is available.
- As a challenger bank in the business market, we offer a range of innovative products that can support both growing and established businesses. Our relationship led approach means that we can respond to the individual needs of businesses, whilst our innovative Breakthrough programme provides a range of face-to-face events, insights and partnerships that help businesses prosper.
- For businesses looking to export abroad, our extensive local networks and knowledge around the world means we’re ideally placed to support their international trade plans. We’ve recently launched the Trade Club Alliance, which is a network of 14 global banks led by Santander Group, providing us with partners and experts in most of the UK’s key trading markets.
- We’ve been named Best Business Current Account Provider for the last 18 years and Business Bank of the Year for the last six years by Moneyfacts.
- We’re committed to helping businesses prosper and to supporting our customers through uncertain economic times.
- Whatever happens in the future, we’ll continue to help businesses prepare. By staying in touch with our customers, we’re well placed to understand how their needs are changing.
- Since the EU referendum, we’ve been running workshops with our business customers to support them in their planning. Smaller businesses have been supported via our regular local Breakthrough in Branch events, and we’ve held a series of policy and political risk seminars for larger SME customers, to help them understand the implications of Brexit and talk them through changes they may have to make if trading arrangements change.
- We have launched a webinar that will look at the anticipated changes in global trading conditions. This addresses the action businesses need to take now to ensure that their business is ready for these new conditions, and explore in more detail the challenges and opportunities they might face in the coming months.
- If customers have concerns about the impact that Brexit may have on their business, they should speak with a Business Banking Manager or contact us at EUExitQuestions@santander.co.uk
- Customers can also find the answers to some frequently asked questions at the following links:
Business Banking customers: santander.co.uk/business/support/customer-support/brexit-and-santander-uk-plc
Corporate and Commercial customers: santandercb.co.uk/financing/international/brexit
- When a business makes an application for a product, we make it clear what information we need to make an informed lending decision.
- We support the appeals process for businesses that have been turned down for finance. Businesses have the right to have their case reviewed by another Santander team if they disagree with a decision to turn them down for finance.
- Where we’re not able to offer business lending, we’ll continue to highlight the right of referral to a government designated platform. These finance platforms will seek to match a business with an alternative lender.
- We support the Standards of Lending Practice for Businesses, which is the benchmark for good lending practice in the UK. The scheme has been extended to cover all businesses with less than £25m turnover.
- We’re also committed to a fair complaints process should a dispute arise. If we can’t resolve a complaint to our customer’s satisfaction, we’ll make smaller businesses aware of their right to complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
- For larger businesses that are not covered by the Financial Ombudsman Service, we’re working with other lenders on an industry-wide, independent dispute resolution service.
- The British Business Bank is dedicated to making finance markets work better for small and mid-sized businesses. Through its Finance Hub and Business Finance Guide, the British Business Bank offers SMEs information on their finance options.
- We work closely with the British Business Bank and are a partner for the Bank’s Enterprise Finance Guarantee facility.
- You can find out more about how the British Business Bank can support your business at british-business-bank.co.uk