COLLABORATION

Aston University corporate strategy gets £40m backing from HSBC UK

SOURCE: Edward Moss/Aston University
The Aston University new campus.

Aston University is on track to delivering its new corporate strategy, thanks to a £40 million finance deal secured with longtime partner HSBC UK.

The added financial firepower will help the university advance its commitment to providing high-quality facilities that respond to the needs of its three main beneficiaries: students, businesses and the wider West Midlands region. 

“We’re committed to delivering outstanding education for our students, fostering engagement with local industry, business and the public sector and strengthening ties with the West Midlands region,” Aston University Finance Director Alison Davies said in comments on the new deal.

“HSBC UK has a fantastic reputation in the higher education sector and it was clear from the tendering process that the team could offer a competitive all-round package, including strong links to the global marketplace.

Relationships are greatly valued at HSBC; its recent relocation to Birmingham catalysed a series of fruitful partnerships with key stakeholders in the Midlands region, all aimed at driving economic activity to the region and beyond.

In support of the UK government’s Industrial Strategy agenda, the multinational investment bank has also been pouring investment into opportunities to generate a steady supply of diverse talents to fulfill local business needs.

This means working closely with the region’s universities on various employability initiatives, including providing expertise, advice and guidance on key topics such as banking careers, or delivering partnership programmes, among others.

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The latest finance deal with Aston University builds on the school’s three-year relationship with the bank. According to a press release, HSBC already provides a Knowledge Transfer, wider package of support to the university, which includes a programme of networking events and workshops for staff and students, the development of a cybersecurity degree and the delivery of a student Hackathon event. 

In addition, HSBC UK has also been providing Aston University with an ongoing financial wellbeing programme for its students, which helps students plan and manage their finances as part of the university’s growing commitment to the health and wellbeing of those studying at the institution. 

“We’ve been working with Aston University for the last three years and in that time we’ve seen the institution go from strength-to-strength,” said Suzy Verma, who is HSBC UK’s Head of Public Sector and Education.

“We are especially delighted to put a funding package in place which helps support its strategic vision and will allow the university to attract and retain talent in the region, a key ambition for the city.

“We look forward to continuing our relationship with the university going forward and exploring how our partnership can add value to students and the wider region,” she added.

HSBC UK Deputy Regional Director Midlands Corporate Banking Keith Webb concurred, adding that the bank’s move to Aston’s home ground in Birmingham early this year helped strengthen both parties’ relationship. 

“This has enabled us to really get under the skin of its new strategy and agree the best finance package for its needs,” he said.

“HSBC UK is committed to supporting the higher education sector, both in Birmingham and further afield, and it is a privilege to work with the team at Aston to support their ambitions to fuel regional growth and employment.”

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Adding on, Davies said on top of furthering Aston’s commitments to its beneficiaries, the continued partnership with HSBC UK will also burnish the university’s credentials in the higher education marketplace.

“Our longstanding relationship with the bank will help underpin our academic success by making Aston University an attractive proposition to students and partners, both at home and abroad.”

Aston University has been awarded ‘gold’ in the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), after findings showed that its students achieve ‘consistently outstanding outcomes’, with high proportions going into highly skilled employment or further study.