HSBC buys Silicon Valley Bank UK for £1 in last-minute rescue for tech firms
HSBC has announced this morning it is buying the stricken UK arm of Silicon Valley Bank, providing a lifeline for tech firms who had feared losing access to their deposits.
The global giant emerged as a ‘white knight’ late last evening – against competition from the Bank of London and an Abu Dhabi investment fund – and this morning Mark Kleinman reported they had moved into pole position.
The bank confirmed the £1 acquisition of Silicon Valley Bank UK to markets this morning.
“This acquisition makes excellent strategic sense for our business in the UK. It strengthens our commercial banking franchise and enhances our ability to serve innovative and fast-growing firms, including in the technology and life-science sectors, in the UK and internationally,” CEO Noel Quinn said this morning.
It means that firms who banked with SVB UK will now be able to access their funds as normal.
The Bank of England said this morning that “the Bank and HMT can confirm that all depositors’ money with SVBUK is safe and secure as a result of this transaction. Silicon Valley Bank’s business will continue to be operated normally by SVBUK. All services will continue to operate as normal and customers should not notice any changes.”
HSBC will not take on any of the obligations of SVB UK’s parent bank in the US, which collapsed after a ban run.
The bank’s failure had been described as a potentially extinction-level event for the UK’s tech sector.
“We welcome SVB UK’s customers to HSBC and look forward to helping them grow in the UK and around the world. SVB UK customers can continue to bank as usual, safe in the knowledge that their deposits are backed by the strength, safety and security of HSBC. We warmly welcome SVB UK colleagues to HSBC, we are excited to start working with them,” Quinn continued.