* Total loans grow to 1.16 bln stg, up 216 pct
* Bank makes second quarter loss of 9.9 mln stg
LONDON, July 23 Britain's Metro Bank said on
Wednesday its lending had more than trebled at the end of the
second quarter compared with a year earlier, and more than half
of its lending was to businesses.
Founded by U.S. entrepreneur Vernon Hill, the bank has been
championed as an alternative to Britain's 'big four' lenders -
Lloyds Banking Group, Royal Bank of Scotland,
Barclays and HSBC.
British lawmakers and regulators want to stimulate
competition within the industry and the country's competition
watchdog last week set out plans for an investigation into
banking services for small business and individuals.
Metro Bank, which launched in 2010 as Britain's first new
high street lender for more than a century, said its lending
amounted to 1.16 billion pounds ($2 billion) at the end of June,
up 216 percent year on year. Customer deposits increased to 1.96
billion pounds, up 125 percent.
"Strong growth in lending and deposits continues to
demonstrate that the British people need and want a choice about
where they do their banking, and we're here to provide that,"
said Chief Executive Craig Donaldson.
Metro Bank has 27 branches in London and the southeast of
England, with 5 more due to open this year. However, it has yet
to make a profit.
The bank made a loss of 9.9 million pounds in the second
quarter, which it said was due to investment in new staff,
branches and technology.
($1 = 0.5857 British Pounds)
(Reporting by Matt Scuffham; editing by Jason Neely)