Belfast Telegraph

Co-op Bank lending jumps 40%

By Jamie Grierson

The Co-operative Bank has accused its rivals of abandoning and "closing the door" on businesses wanting to borrow.

The bank said it had shrugged off economic turmoil and increased lending to business by 40% in the last three years.

In a period when "many of its competitors firmly closed the door to companies wanting to borrow", the Co-op said it had lifted business borrowing from £6.2bn to £8.7bn since 2007.

Neville Richardson, chief executive at the bank's parent company Co-operative Financial Services (CFS), said: "We put considerable emphasis into forming close relationships with our corporate and business customers and this has served us well as many businesses have felt abandoned by some of the other banks."