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The Business Magazine July 2024
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SME lending up 33 per cent at Paragon Bank

The Business Magazine article image for: SME lending up 33 per cent at Paragon Bank
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7 December 2022
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Lending by Paragon Bank’s SME division has risen by 33 per cent in the last year, according to figures announced by the specialist lender and savings bank.

The figures, which cover the year ended 30 September, also show that new lending volumes at the bank rose to £446.4 million, up from £336.9 million in the previous year. The division has also seen a 17 per cent increase in its loan book, reaching £721.7 million.

The Group’s strong performance also saw operating profit before fair value items reach £226 million, a 16.4 per cent rise.

The lender points to its new broker portal as facilitating much of the growth it has experienced in the past year, which led to its highest ever number of applications and improved conversion rates. This is shown by the fact that the second half of the year, following the rollout of the portal, saw more than 45 per cent higher advances.

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Paragon has also seen an improvement in its broker engagement. 88 per cent of the brokers it surveyed said their experience was as good as or better than with other lenders, while 81 per cent said they were likely to provide further business.

John Phillipou, Paragon Bank SME Lending Managing Director, said: “This was a strong performance, with the division helping SMEs to invest in their businesses and powering the economy. We were particularly pleased with the level of applications via our broker portal, which we expect to grow in the coming years.

“The programme of investment in system improvements to create efficiency gains has continued throughout the year. Agile delivery enables individual improvements to go into the live system as they are completed, providing incremental enhancements, enhancing the broker experience.”

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Featured image: iStock


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Sam is the Regional Editor of Biz News, responsible for both Hampshire and Dorset.

A new recruit to journalism, Sam started writing for the Business Magazine as a freelancer in May of 2022 after completing his degree in English at University College London. His passion for local businesses and ability to tell a story soon caught the attention of the publication’s management team and have led to his meteoric rise.

Sam, who lives in central Reading, takes a particular interest in technology, gaming and food and drink, having been a chef before starting his degree.

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