Lloyds Banking Group has announced that it has helped more than 6,000 UK businesses to start trading overseas so far this year - firmly beating its 2016 target and providing a boost to the Government’s drive to back new exporters.
The success means that the Group will end the year, having surpassed the pledge it made in its 2016 SME Charter, and in its Helping Britain Prosper Plan, to help 5,000 first time exporters in 2016.
It also contributes towards the Government’s aim of helping 100,000 businesses launch in overseas markets by 2020. As part of a strategic partnership with the Department for International Trade (DIT), Lloyds Banking Group promised to support 25,000 new exporters – a quarter of the total Government target.
The news comes soon after the launch of Lloyds Banking Group’s new International Trade Portal (ITP) through which businesses can access information and practical support to help them learn how and where to market their products and services overseas. It also follows the recent launch of the Department for International Trade’s (DIT) new digital platform, GREAT.gov.uk, through which businesses will be able to register to find export opportunities across the globe.
However, latest data from the Group’s Business in Britain report, shows that businesses were less optimistic about their prospects for boosting international trade following the result of the EU Referendum – although most firms are still looking at overseas opportunities.
Adrian Walker, Managing Director, Head of Global Transaction Banking, Lloyds Banking Group said: “Through our pledge to help 5,000 first time exporters in 2016, we wanted to ensure that we are helping as many businesses as possible to make the all-important first foray into overseas trade.
“By exceeding our target this year we have shown that international trade presents an opportunity for many thousands of UK firms and by continuing to support them, through initiatives like our International Trade Portal, we will help Britain prosper globally.”
International Trade Secretary, Dr Liam Fox said: “Government is committed to supporting businesses of all sizes to grow and we’re working closely with the private sector and banks including Lloyds Banking Group to help companies connect with the global demand for British goods and services. Lloyds’ achievement is a welcome boost to our drive in helping more UK businesses branch out to overseas markets.
“It is why we developed GREAT.gov.uk, a ground-breaking new digital platform, making it easier for businesses to access millions of pounds' worth of potential overseas business and take the next step towards building a global brand.”