Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are one of the most complex sectors of the financial services industry. They simultaneously have the characteristics of both personal and business customers, especially in the owner-managed segment. Financially, their needs span aspects of retail banking, corporate banking, wealth management and insurance.
Governments believe the SME sector is of strategic importance to economic growth. National strategies look to encourage and support the development of SMEs, particularly through export initiatives. Internationally, the financial services sector has been criticised by national governments for its failure to provide sufficient lending and support to the SME sector. This has prompted government interventions such as loan guarantee schemes, trade insurance cover and the establishment of state-backed entities to work with banks in funding SMEs. Continue reading How to disrupt the financial services SME banking market through digital