Company news  |  January 7, 2021

Now that we have clarity that the UK will move forward with a trade agreement between the UK and European Union (EU), we want to reassure our clients, partners and the market that Silicon Valley Bank remains well placed to continue to support the innovation economy today and in the future. 

SVB’s UK and German Branches remain open for business as usual in the UK and EU markets and as SVB is a US bank operating through branches in the UK and Germany, it does not rely on a European ‘passport’ to provide services from the UK to clients located in the EU. The current regulatory authorisations of the UK and Germany branches with respect to their relevant products and services will remain in place and so SVB will be able to continue to provide those services.

We are focused on supporting our clients who may be facing challenges and concerns during this period. Our more than 35 years of experience working alongside dynamic companies and investors gives us deep insight into how partnership, dependability and flexibility matter in turbulent times.

It's clear to SVB that a healthy innovation sector is pivotal for the recovery of the UK economy and we remain bullish that the technology and life-science companies will lead the way. The outlook for the innovation economy in the UK is positive and we’re optimistic that we will see further company formation and job creation as a result of continued investment into the ecosystem.

While uncertainty still remains surrounding aspects of this new trade agreement and the impact to the innovation economy in the months and years ahead, SVB will continue to support innovative companies and investors in this new era of UK economic relations with the EU and the rest of the world.

Key takeaways from the UK & EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement

  • Following the end of the transition period, the UK has now left the EU single market and is a “third country” for the purposes of EU law.


  • The EU-UK trade and cooperation agreement does not cover access of financial services firms between the UK and EU markets. This is still to be determined by a separate process under which the EU will either grant “equivalence” to the UK and its regulated firms, or let firms seek permissions from individual EU member states. As of this date, only Luxembourg has granted the UK equivalence status ahead of any ruling from the EU.


  • With respect to financial services, the Trade Agreement does include general principles around maintaining international standards for regulation and supervision, with brief provisions aimed at ensuring continued market access. The EU and UK retain the right to regulate their own respective markets.  


  • UK and EU firms may no longer rely on “passporting” rights to access one another’s markets, although the FCA has implemented measures to allow EU firms to continue to provide services in the UK for a temporary period only.


  • However, as per our previous communications, SVB’s UK branch does not currently rely on passport rights and will continue to provide its European clients with products and services on a cross-border basis.

Further details on the Trade Agreement can be found via Gov.UK