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four big banks put money into new social fund

July 2001

Four banks in Scotland will jointly launch a loan fund in September to tackle social exclusion.

The Bank of Scotland, Clydesdale Bank, Lloyds TSB, and Royal Bank of Scotland will put $4.2million (£3m) into the Social Investment Scotland (SIS) fund, which will lend sums of around $28,000 to Scottish non-profit businesses providing child care, recycling facilities and other community services.

The fund, which will also receive $2.8m from Scottish Enterprise, a government-funded development agency, has been set up with help from the Scottish Executive and various community groups. It will initially operate from Edinburgh and Glasgow and will provide loans at or below commercial rates.

SIS spokesman Scott Skinner said the scheme was based on US models that have shown how banks can help tackle social exclusion by providing loans to non-profit businesses, while making some profit.

‘Non-profit businesses have traditionally found it hard to get loans but this fund will allow the banks to help them while making a small return,’ he said.




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