Westpac pledges to back SMEs in COVID recovery

by Mike Wood15 Apr 2021

As the economy recovers from the slump of 2020, Westpac has pledged to continue supporting SMEs as they look to get back on their feet.

Greg Pell, Westpac’s general manager of equipment finance and commercial introducers, told Australian Broker that the Big Four had supported all phases of the government’s SME Guarantee Schemes since their initial induction in March 2020 and would continue to do so going forward.

“This includes announcing our offer under the latest federal government SME Recovery Loan Scheme, which is helping to provide businesses with access to low-rate finance for those that need more time and support to get back on their feet following the impacts of COVID-19 and recent floods.”

Pell says small businesses from a range of sectors have taken out loans under Phase 2 of the government's SME Guarantee Scheme, including mining, manufacturing, wholesale, retail, transport and construction.

“Customers are taking advantage of record-low interest rates and incentives to invest in office equipment, machinery and business stock, or have been using the finance to buy larger business premises,” said Pell. “Westpac is committed to helping Australian business succeed and grow, and providing low rates is one way of doing that.

“We are supporting brokers by helping them support their customers,” he added. “One of the ways we’re doing this is by reducing our rates on the Phase 2 SME Guarantee Scheme loans and announcing our offer under Phase 3, this time called the SME Recovery Loan Scheme.”

“These support measures are communicated to our broker network, and we encourage them to start conversations with their clients as many small businesses move into a position to invest for future growth.”

Read the full story in Australian Broker magazine which is available from 19 April.