KeyBank Remains a Top Small Business Lender in the United States, Extends and Doubles SBA 7(a) Loans From 2020

Originally published at KeyBank ranked No. 23 on The Fair360, formerly DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2021.


On Oct. 7, KeyBank announced it extended 947 loans for a total of $434 million during the SBA’s FY 2021, more than doubling its number of unit loan approvals to individual small businesses from 2020. The volume secured KeyBank a top 10 position out of over 1,700 participating lenders and represented a record-breaking loan volume for Key in terms of both units and dollars.

This funding is outside of KeyBank’s efforts through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which held its third wave of funding in 2021. Through PPP, KeyBank processed approximately 70,000 SBA-approved loans, totaling $11 billion in critical funding for businesses. Since 2015, KeyBank has provided more than $2 billion in SBA-guaranteed financing to thousands of small business owners and has continually been ranked among the top SBA lenders in the country.

“This year marks a monumental achievement for our team. Our strategic focus and partnership with clients along with the SBA are playing a meaningful role in the economic rebound of many small businesses and communities” said Jim Fliss, KeyBank National SBA Manager. For our team, the mission is helping the communities we serve to thrive by providing capital to more individual businesses that operate in them. Our growth and rankings this year are proof that we are honoring that commitment, signaling to small business owners that they can rely on us.”

“Complementing our industry-leading SBA offerings, we are proud to be a true relationship bank that provides holistic financial solutions including treasury, merchant, and wealth management services for the company, the entrepreneur, and their employees.” said Kip Clarke, KeyBank Head of Business Banking.

The SBA measures lender performance based on number of units and absolute dollars lent under the flagship 7(a) program. KeyBank earned a number one ranking in SBA dollar volume, ahead of all other lenders, in SBA districts of Syracuse and Seattle; ranked in the top 3 in Portland, Columbus, Cleveland and Buffalo. For units, KeyBank earned a top 3 ranking in the districts of Cleveland, Buffalo, Seattle, Syracuse, Portland, and Maine. The bank increased loans to individual small businesses by more than 100% in 2021 compared to 2020 in Syracuse, Buffalo, Columbus, Connecticut, Pittsburgh, New York, Philadelphia, Utah, Boise, and Massachusetts.

“KeyBank continues to invest heavily in all areas of our national SBA lending platform, from loan origination through closing, to ensure that business owners can efficiently access the capital they need while receiving the highest level of service from our specialized SBA lending staff,” said Fliss. “This includes significant investment in digital technology utilized by our stakeholders to ensure we are delivering ease, value, and expertise to small business clients across the nation. We remain optimistic looking into the future and will continue to support small businesses that are the backbone of our economy driving significant GDP and job creation.”