“I am very optimistic about the future,” she said. “The rhetoric around small business has been negative for too long. When I look at small businesses, I see passion, drive, resilience, resilience. That’s the story we want to tell. “
Small businesses have created money buffers during periods of blockade and now want to invest in growth. Morgan said demand for lending would not be reduced by rising interest rates, which she said remained “relatively low.”
“There’s still a huge incentive to take out loans and invest,” she said. “I don’t think the cost of debt is a barrier for many small businesses,” she said, adding that demand for asset and equipment financing has “grown tremendously”.
In recent years, the CBA has made a boost in the small business lending market, taking market share from the National Bank of Australia, which remains the dominant business lender in the country.
Morgan said the CBA has focused on using analytics from the bank’s vast data pool, including customer transaction templates and payments from trading terminals to help businesses monitor templates and make changes to transactions to increase cash flow.
Morgan said she did not focus on what competitors were offering, but pointed to CBA’s digital business tools to help with features such as payroll and list. “The most important thing in a small business is a little time,” she said. “If you don’t offer great digital tools, great data and insight, you won’t be relevant.”
Both major parties have promised to resume domestic production. Morgan said Australian manufacturing has huge potential, especially in mining and agricultural products, and banks can play a role through innovative financing.
She said traditional forms of financing did not meet the needs of producers, and the CBA promoted loans such as invoices and inventory financing. “Manufacturing is one of our target industries for growth.”
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