British Business Bank responds to National Audit Office report

Press release 15 January 2020

The National Audit Office (NAO) has today published a value for money study on the British Business Bank, in particular examining its impact on SMEs’ access to finance and its preparedness to respond to future challenges.

Commenting on the report;

We welcome the NAO’s findings that the British Business Bank has performed well against its objectives, enabling additional growth in UK SMEs as a result of our activities.

The NAO has provided a robust evidence base, culminating in a balanced report. As well as being an independent assessment of the Bank’s performance and impact to date, the report is valuable to us in that it provides a clear set of recommendations to enhance our business. This helps ensure that we are best prepared for future challenges, and supports the Bank in continuing to deliver and demonstrate value for money. To this end, we look forward to implementing the recommendations proposed.

Since its foundation five years ago, the British Business Bank has grown rapidly, and is currently supporting over £7 billion of finance to more than 91,000 businesses. We have achieved this while generating positive returns for the taxpayer, delivering excess returns of £195 million to the Exchequer to date and, as the NAO points out, maintaining current costs in line with industry benchmarks. The NAO’s report will help us build further on this track record as we continue to improve finance markets for UK SMEs.

Keith Morgan CEO, British Business Bank