Hospitality a fundamental part of UK service industry
, relationship lending
"We’ve been involved with the British Hospitality Association now for the last couple of years. Since we started building our corporate, commercial and business bank in the UK, which is only three or four years old in itself because we didn’t use to have that business at all. It’s very important that you kind of connect with the key industries in the UK. And the UK is a service economy. You just have to look at the, you know, when the service industry isn’t performing well the GDP isn’t performing well. And the hospitality is a fundamental part of the service industry in the UK. And we’ve got lots of hotels, we’ve got lots of restaurants, we’ve got lots of leisure facilities in the UK. And actually being in touch with that part of the UK currently is very important for any bank that wants to grow in the UK. And we want to grow in the UK. So we’ve grown our lending to small businesses by 20% per annum over the course of the last three or four years. We intend to kind of maintain that trajectory, and being in touch with these types of businesses is a good way of achieving that."