Wales has a significant banking sector, both as a near shoring hub for London and in its own right.
HSBC have their international banking centre in Swansea, taking advantage of the large number of languages spoken in the city. They also have specialist teams assessing HSBC’s risk across its UK operations. Legal and General also have a considerable presence in Wales, with employees supporting its life assurance and annuities, pensions and unit trust operations.
Principality, the UK’s sixth largest building society, was founded in Cardiff and still has its headquarters in the city. Hodge Bank was created in Cardiff by Sir Julian Hodge. It has recently moved to new premises at the prestigious 1 Central Square, reflecting its impressive growth over the last few years.
Cardiff has a cluster of retail and motor finance operations that includes Barclays Partner Finance and Lloyds Banking Group’s Blackhorse Finance. Motonovo Finance and GMAC are also leading motor finance companies based in Cardiff. V12 Retail Finance, meanwhile, is one the UK’s biggest broker platforms.
For business finance, Henry Howard Finance is a leading SME lender based in Newport. In North Wales, Wrexham has been named as the site of the new Development Bank of Wales. This Welsh Government owned lender will be investing up to £1billion in growth-focused SMEs over the next five years.
Banks and Finance companies in Wales are strengthened by close collaboration with academia and industry bodies. The Welsh Financial Services Graduate Programme is a unique partnership between leading financial companies, academia and the Welsh Financial Services Forum, which aims to build the talent pool in Wales.