Business saver account launched for firms looking to invest in positive social value in the region

April 5, 2024

Bristol firms are now able to put surplus funds into a specialist savings account while also supporting a city-run organisation that gives access to affordable loans to individuals at risk of financial exclusion.

Great Western Credit Union’s (GWCU) Business Saver is aimed at businesses that are looking to earn monthly interest at a competitive interest rate. 

The account offers 2% AER/1.98% gross, with a minimum deposit of only £1. It has instant access – although there are some limits to the number of withdrawals that can be made.

It is available to businesses registered at Companies House, the Mutuals Public Register or are a registered charity. However, it is not available to sole traders.

Bristol-based GWCU is the biggest organisation of its size in the region, with more than 21,000 members across Bristol, Bath, Dorset, Somerset, Wiltshire and Gloucestershire and around £11m in saving deposits.

It is owned by its members – individuals who save, borrow or bank with it - lends money at fair and affordable rates of interest, so saving members, many at risk of financial exclusion, from turning to high-cost doorstep or payday lenders.

GWCU CEO James Berry said: “Following our successful bond offer last year, we have been evaluating the services and products we provide and looking at how we can reach even more people across our region.

“Our Business Saver is helping meet new demand for organisations wanting to diversify their financial providers.

“Businesses can expect good financial returns, whilst knowing that they are providing positive social value to their local communities.”

The business account follows the launch of GWCU’s cash ISA, which is giving thousands of people across the South West access to ethical and fair saving services.

GWCU also recently revealed the results of its Family Saver pilot, staged in conjunction with the University of Bristol, which will provide mothers with the option to save money directly from their Child Benefit payments.

Founded in 1999 by a small group of volunteers in inner-city Bristol, GWCU has grown significantly over the past 10 years.

It most recently extended its reach from the Bristol and Bath region into Dorset, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire through mergers with Wyvern Savings and Loans in 2021 and Stroud Valleys Credit Union in 2022 – and changing its name from Bristol Credit Union to Great Western Credit Union to reflect this new geographical focus.

GWCU staff photo by Jon Craig Photography

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