Silicon Valley Bank opens branch in the UK

11 Jun 2012

In what is the first case of a US bank opening a commercial branch in the UK in several years, Silicon Valley’s high street bank, appropriately enough called Silicon Valley Bank, has opened a new branch in London.

No doubt a coup for the UK tech start-up scene, Silicon Valley Bank will bring a whole suite of products and services to innovation businesses, including current and deposit accounts, loans, cash management services, trade finance and foreign exchange.

George Osborne, the UK’s Chancellor of the Exchequer today said: “The news that Silicon Valley Bank is launching a full banking service in London is yet more proof that the UK is fast becoming the technology centre of Europe. The knowledge, expertise and dedication that Silicon Valley Bank brings to the ecosystem is another important step toward our objective to make the UK the best place to start and grow the great technology companies of the future.”

A bank just for innovators

The bank includes Cisco, Evernote, Mindspeed, Mozill and Pinterest, as well as major investors like Silver Lake and Sequoia Capital as customers.

The bank has been expanding its global footprint in recent years, with branches in Israel, India and China.

Silicon Valley Bank has had a presence in the UK through affiliate SVB Financial Group UK Ltd. Existing UK clients include Shazam, Icera, Mimecast, Adconion, Index Ventures and Balderton Capital.

“The opening of a Silicon Valley Bank branch in London signals a significant step in the evolution of the technology sector in the UK at a time when there is strong government support for a thriving community of local innovation businesses,” the CEO of Silicon Valley Bank Greg Becker said.

“The UK branch opening is a key milestone for us and, more significantly, an example of how important high-growth technology, life science and clean-tech businesses and their investors are to the global economy. Our clients are doing remarkable things.

“We are excited to be a part of their success and thrilled to be open for business in the UK,” Becker said.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years