Commonwealth Bank has announced record low rates under the extended SME Guarantee Scheme, which offers loans up to $1 million for both working capital and investment purposes. Eligible customers will be able to access funds with interest rates from 3.5 per cent for secured or partially secured loans and 4.25 per cent for unsecured loans.

CBA’s Group Executive for Business Banking Mike Vacy Lyle said this low-cost funding, and the Federal Government’s expansion of the instant asset write-off scheme, will enable more Australian businesses to retool and invest for growth.

“There are many support measures in this year’s budget that will help business –  particularly those that will now be able to write-off the full value of capital assets purchased until 2022,” Mr Vacy Lyle said.

“This will allow more businesses to invest in assets – like equipment, machinery and vehicles – to set them up for the future. All of this has a huge flow on effect to help keep Australians in jobs and create new ones.

“It’s great news for business owners – and combined with our lending products under the SME Guarantee Scheme –businesses have the added boost of larger and longer term funding assistance, record low funding, and tax cuts.

“Small businesses are the lifeblood of the economy and as Australia’s largest bank, we will continue to do what we can to ensure they are supported and set up for success into the future.”

CBA was the major backer of the Government’s Coronavirus SME Guarantee Scheme launched in March this year, funding more than half of all loans written. The bank has committed to make available up to $6 billion in lending under the extended scheme to help SMEs pilot their way through the pandemic.

“We led the way in the first phase of the scheme and we intend to do the same for this next phase, to support as many businesses as we can,’” Mr Vacy Lyle said.

“By providing access to a deeper and long-term pool of financial support, we will be able to give our business customers some confidence to plan and invest for the future. This is essential to help lift activity across the economy and to support broader efforts to combat the impact of coronavirus and help Australians on the road to recovery.”

CBA approved more than $875 million in loans to 9,400 businesses during the first phase of the SME Guarantee Scheme. BizExpress, the bank’s pioneering digital lending system, has been key to CBA’s leading role in providing fast access to the SME loans.

“The Bank has continued to invest in its digital and technology platforms to ensure small business customers have very quick access to capital,” Mr Vacy-Lyle said.

This investment includes a new digital BizExpress Online product (available through Netbank and the CommBank app) which will offer eligible CBA small business customers access to funding up to $100,000 in as little as 15 minutes.

Through Phase 2 of the SME Guarantee Scheme, CBA is supporting both new and existing customers with unsecured loans up to $250,000 and secured loans up to $1 million, for up to a five year period. Businesses and not-for-profits with annual turnovers up to $50 million are eligible to apply. These loans will be available until June 2021.

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