Business Finance Council

The Business Finance Council works with lenders to ensure their SME customers can access the finance they need to grow and thrive.


The purpose of the Business Finance Council is to work with lenders to ensure their SME customers can access the finance they need to grow and thrive.

The Council is jointly chaired by the BEIS Secretary of State and the Economic Secretary to the Treasury.

Its members, listed below, include major lenders and providers of alternative finance, UK Finance and the Finance and Leasing Association, the British Business Bank and Business Representative Organisations.

The Council will:

  • share information on the lending market for small and mid-sized businesses, particularly the availability of working capital
  • assess the effectiveness of actions underway to support small and mid-sized businesses in accessing finance, including advice and mentoring
  • support the use of programmes offered by the British Business Bank
  • ensure that information provided to businesses from government and from finance providers is aligned, consistent and accurate

The Council may make recommendations for action by banks, finance providers and businesses, and may act by consensus among its own members where this is judged to be effective.

SME Finance Charter

The Council has drawn up an SME Finance Charter with pledges from UK banks and finance providers to support their SME customers through Brexit.

Terms of Reference

Business Finance Council members

The Business Finance Council is co-chaired by Andrea Leadsom, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, and John Glen, the Economic Secretary to the Treasury.

Name Organisation
Rt Hon Andrea Leadsom MP (co-chair) Secretary of State, Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS)
John Glen MP (co-chair) Economic Secretary to the Treasury and City Minister
Kelly Tolhurst MP Minister for Small Business, Consumers and Corporate Responsibility, BEIS
  British Business Bank
  UK Finance
  Bibby Financial Services
  Funding Circle
  Lloyds Banking Group
  Royal Bank of Scotland
  Santander UK
  British Chambers of Commerce
  The Federation of Small Businesses
  Finance and Leasing Association
  The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales


Minutes of meetings will be available here.

Contact details