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LHV Bank opens Manchester office to expand Northern lending

The newly-licenced bank is aiming to build a £100m loan book by year-end

Erki Kilu / LHV Bank

Erki Kilu / LHV Bank

SME lender LHV Bank is gearing up to dramatically boost its lending activities in the north of the UK, via its new office in Manchester.

The regional expansion comes as part of LHV’s new financial target of building a £100m loan book by the end of 2023, double the £50m target it set at the start of the year.

“In a short space of time, our SME lending team has already built a solid loan book, positioning ourselves well for growth and highlighting the market demand for competitive loans in the region,” Erki Kilu, the CEO of LHV Bank said.

LHV offers commercial property and trading loans to UK SMEs with values from £500,000 up to £5m, with its lending accelerated by the acquisition of failed lender Bank North in October 2022.

Kilu said the bank is looking to position itself against what it sees as its competitors in the mid-market SME lending space, with players like OakNorth, Allica, and Shawbrook Bank.

Last month LHV partnered with Raisin UK to begin rolling out its first savings offering to consumers, starting with 12 Month Fixed Term, 95 Day Notice and Easy Access savings accounts.

LHV was previously the UK arm of Estonian financial services giant AS LHV Pank, but since getting its own banking licence has operated as a separate bank in its own right.

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