Financing the economy

Encouraging businesses to invest

Societe Generale reaffirms its commitment both to supporting the development of SMEs and its involvement in collective efforts to stimulate the French and European economies.

Societe Generale announced in September the launch of new financing initiatives and solutions in order to encourage investment by small-and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and to continue to actively participate in financing the economy. On the back of the measures recently announced by the ECB to support the economy, The Group is launching, in its Societe Generale and Crédit du Nord network of retail banks, a special loan offer* aimed at encouraging investment by businesses in France. The Group has earmarked EUR 2bn for loans for SMEs, micro-businesses and professionals at exceptionally low interest rates to finance their investment projects.

In addition to its bank loans, Societe Generale is regularly adapting its offer to better meet the new needs of its business clients. One such example was factoring, where in June 2014 the bank launched "Avance évolutive", which finances companies' invoices on a temporary basis. The bank also has leadership positions in international trade finance and disintermediation.

Societe Generale is also committed to improving the quality of its relationship with clients on a daily basis by focusing on expertise and proximity with businesses. The Bank has thus significantly strengthened its structure for accompanying to businesses, whether through its local network of branches (doubling the time advisors spend in their jobs to 4 years, putting in place commercial assistants) or by providing access to business experts. An in-depth overhaul of internal processes has significantly cut down the time clients have to wait for answers.

In an environment characterised by a sluggish economy, Societe Generale is fully committed to supporting SMEs and micro-businesses
in their ambitions to win new markets in France and abroad, in particular with the support of a whole range of innovative and attractive financing.

Laurent Goutard, Head of Societe Generale retail network in France

Societe Generale's support for financing business in France

  • €19bn: the amount of new loans available each year in the Societe Generale network to finance businesses in France

  • +10,000 business clients in France by 2016; Societe Generale aims to be the main banker for business clients

  • 1,880 professionals (advisors and client relationship assistants) dedicated to businesses in the Societe Generale and Crédit du Nord networks in more than 360 business centres and branches, with 300 business-line experts and specialised advisors

  • 250 Societe Generale private bankers and 100 experts operating in 8 regional centres and around 100 branches across the whole country

  • Business advisors stay in position for twice as long as previously (4 years since 2008)

  • Reduction in response times for loan requests: less than 5 days for 80% of applications

  • 87% of business clients recommend Societe Generale

* Detailed conditions of the special offer available in the Societe Generale network: Amount: €1.5bn; Launch of offer: From 17/09/14; End of the operation: End-December 2014; Target market: SMEs with sales of less than, or equal to, €50m and Professionals; Purpose of financing: Only financing of medium-term investment; Amount per investment operation: between €10,000 and €1m; Duration of loans: 3-5 years; Interest rate: exceptional conditions