Small businesses who feel badly treated by lenders will be able to appeal against the big banks and challenge them, under new plans unveiled by the Business Finance Taskforce.The “Better Business Finance” campaign will see any decision to turn down a small business loan application reviewed by another person within the bank. As part of the pledge, banks will also have to provide businesses with the result of a loan appeal within 30 days and information on alternative sources of finance if the appeal is rejected. The appeals system and review team will be led by Professor Russel Griggs, former chairman of the CBI’s SME Council. Russel Griggs is an excellent choice to lead the review team. His pedigree of representing Britain’s SMEs is second to none, and has the right experience of lobbying and negotiating on behalf of small businesses. In addition to having led the CBI’s SME Council, Russel Griggs is also chair of the Scottish Government’s Regulatory Review Group, which advises on regulation. The Business Finance Taskforce was set up last year by Britain’s largest banks and the British Bankers’ Association, with the aim to improve SMEs’ access to finance.
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