ANZ promises $1 billion in loans for small businesses

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ANZ promises $1 billion in loans for small businesses

The ANZ wants to change the "perception" among small businesses that they can't get a loan from a bank.

To say there's been a lot of hype about the millions of dollars put into high profile "startups" over the last decade is an understatement.

From the $3 million recently invested in a Surry Hills based firm working on a DIY graphic design platform, to the 17-year-old reportedly being paid "tens of millions" for an app, there's no shortage of high profile stories involving lots of money for tiny operators with big dreams.

For many though, a more realistic step in expanding a business after starting out with money from family and friends is to think about a bank loan.

The perceived problem is in getting the loan: over the years banks have been the target of criticism, including claims interest rates are too high. Last year the then federal minister for small business Brendan O’Connor weighed in on the issue, saying he had asked banks to think about "creative ways" around impediments to business loans.

Today ANZ put a foot forward, with officials announcing the bank will lend $1 billion to new businesses over the next 12 months.

Dangling money is one thing though - convincing small businesses that they're in with a chance of securing a loan is another.

There is a "perception" that banks don't loan to new businesses, says ANZ General Manager Small Business Banking, Nick Reade.

“A lot of new small business owners think that it’s only big businesses that get loans from the banks, but that’s not the case. In the last year, we approved more than seven out of every 10 lending applications from new small businesses," he stated in a press release.

Whether this latest move changes that perception is yet to be seen.

In recent years banks have tried various ways to get the attention of small businesses - NAB with this current TV advertisement; the Commonwealth Bank's 24-hour phone line; Westpac announcing it had set aside $1 billion to "support the business sector".


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