The SBCI has published its annual report and accounts for 2016.
- At end Dec 2016, the SBCI had supported 12,593 SMEs, employing 67,150 people, with drawn down loans totalling €544m. By end Q1 2017, a further €113m was drawn down by 2,700 SMEs – bringing total drawn down loans to €657m and total number of SMEs supported above 15,000.
- At end Dec 2016, SBCI had teamed up with 8 on-lenders to provide lower-cost SME finance (3 new on-lenders in 2016).
- SMEs have saved 1.15% on average market interest rates.
- Strong geographical spread of SBCI loans across all regions. South-western region is Ireland’s biggest user of SBCI loans (17.8% of total)
- Strong sectoral spread. Agriculture sector is biggest user of SBCI loans (22.9% of total)
- 84% of loans used by SMEs to invest in growing the business. 11% for working capital and 5% for refinancing loans owed to a lender exiting the Irish market.
- 2016 highlights included SBCI launching its first risk-sharing product (€150m Agriculture Cashflow Support Loan Scheme); being appointed as manager of the Credit Guarantee Scheme; and SBCI agreeing two major new sources of funding (from Council of Europe Development Bank and National Treasury Management Agency).
- New on-lenders and additional risk-sharing planned for 2017 and beyond.
Comment by Nick Ashmore, CEO of SBCI:
“The SBCI is delivering on its mandate to drive competition and choice in the Irish SME lending market. Our strong growth in new lending in 2016, which has continued into 2017, shows the positive impact of the SBCI’s lower cost funding on the Irish SME finance market.
We appreciate the support shown by our on-lenders in delivering these results for SMEs. Our Annual Report today sets out the strategic direction for SBCI for the coming years, noting our role as a conduit for the effective use of EU SME supports relevant to Irish businesses and supporting a variety of types of finance.”
See the full report here.