NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Citi today announced that the bank met and surpassed its $7 billion lending commitment to U.S. small business by over $900 million in 2011.
The $7.9 billion in small business lending was more than 30 percent higher than the $6 billion total in 2010. This represents a continuing increase year over year, with a rise from the $4.5 billion total in 2009.
Citi has multiple lending programs for small businesses, both conventional and nonconventional, with the goal of providing loans to as many small business customers as possible.
“Small businesses are critical to job creation and driving economic growth,” said Citi Chief Executive Officer Vikram Pandit. “I am pleased that we have substantially increased our small business lending and exceeded our goal for the year. With 2012 now underway, we are working hard to meet, and even surpass, the $8 billion commitment for this year as part of our $24 billion three-year goal."
In September 2011, Citi pledged $24 billion in lending over the course of three years – $7 billion in 2011, $8 billion in 2012 and $9 billion in 2013. The announcement was in conjunction with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to provide access to lending and capital that will speed economic recovery.
Citi Small business clients have an opportunity to access this capital through loans and lines of credit and other conventional products. In addition, clients are eligible for loans through SBA programs, where Citi is a preferred lender.
“We believe one of the best ways to help small businesses grow is to make banking simpler,” said Raj Seshadri, Citi’s head of U.S. Small Business. “We made it easier for customers to apply for credit by offering less paperwork and an improved customer experience. Over the last year we tripled originations and increased credit application approvals substantially. Our goal is to responsibly get to ‘yes’ for as many small business owners as possible. With every ‘yes,’ a door is opened and a dream fulfilled.”
Citi also remains dedicated to providing access to capital for those organizations supporting qualified, mission-based Community Development Financial Institutions, Community Development Corporations, micro-lenders and other non-profits that then on-lend to small business owners, via Citibank Community Capital and the Communities at Work program.
“All this is part of our mission to help small business owners as they create jobs and capture the American dream,” said Pandit. “Our fundamental goal is to create economic value and support progress.”
Citi, the leading global financial services company, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management. Additional information may be found at www.citigroup.com.