Dear reader,

One of the most important consequences derived from the world economic crisis has been the progressive cut in financing by banking entities. The phenomenon, although global, has notably affected Spain. According to data from the European Central Bank, the number of loans granted last year fell by 1.9% in our country, while in the euro zone it increased by 0.4%. In this context, those who are suffering the most from the credit drought are the self-employed and small and medium-sized companies.

This context of cutbacks in the supply of credit to SMEs actually presents important opportunities to the most healthy financial institutions. Proper management of this segment is allowing these entities to increase income from resources, services and financing for companies with below-average risk, and ultimately increase their portfolio share.

In this newsletter we invite you to get closer to the world full of possibilities of small and medium-sized companies. To do this, in the “The Alarm Clock” section you can find an article on how the incorporation into SME banking of specific customer management tools, already used successfully by Individual banking, can lead to an increase in the income statement greater than 35%. These tools allow entities to take advantage of opportunities to attract SMEs, promote early activation and development of customers, properly manage the life cycle and use pricing as an effective management lever.

In addition, in the “The shower” section you can read the success story of La Caixa, which has managed to significantly increase its business business in a period of crisis. Despite the difficult economic times, the entity maintains its strategic commitment to financing the viable and profitable projects of Spanish companies.

In the “The agenda” section we recommend several events that may be of interest to you, including “The 5th Annual SME Banking Conference”, in which the current challenges and opportunities of corporate banking will be discussed.

We hope that this issue of our newsletter will help you discover the existing business development opportunities in the SME banking segment. Financial institutions play an important role in the development of small and medium-sized companies and therefore the quality of their financial services management has a direct impact on the economic progress of our country.