One bank bucking the credit crunch trend in pulling back from lending to small businesses is Triodos Bank. The small UK arm of the Netherlands-based ethical bank says it is looking to increase its lending throughout 2009. Already this year it has seen record levels of lending requests from the renewable energy, organic farming, social housing and recycling sectors, it says. Announcing its results for 2008, the bank reports an overall annual growth rate of 13%, with lending rising to £207 million including record finance for renewable energy projects of over £20 million. Triodos says this growth is enabled by its "sustainable" banking model whereby it lends less than the total amount it has on deposit from its savers, meaning that it has no need to borrow from other banks to lend. A share issue in 2008 for its renewable energy fund was oversubscribed, raising £10 million from individual and institutional investors.
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