Hancock Whitney delivers critical support for local businesses

John Hairston, May 1, 2020

As Americans and the world fight COVID-19, Hancock Whitney is continuing to invest in the business of people and communities where our roots run deep—just like we’ve done in prosperity and adversity for 120-plus years. We’re working together to help all of us endure the pandemic and emerge ready and able to manage whatever normal looks like beyond the coronavirus crisis.

Together, we’re making big steps in sustaining our economy, helping those with the greatest needs, and moving toward safely reopening our country. More important, we’re taking a giant leap together to carry on the collective caring that’s been at the forefront since the pandemic began.

Helping businesses with PPP

This week banks across the country participated in round two of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). In the month of April across both rounds of funding for the PPP, we’ve received approvals for funding of more than 12,000 loans totaling in excess of $2.4 billion. Of these loans, 67 percent of the total number of loans approved are for a loan amount less than $100,000. An aggregate of 88 percent of these approved loans are for a loan amount under $350,000.

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The immediate, immense need necessitated Congress’s quick passage of funding for round two of the PPP. Our bankers have worked tirelessly around the clock since the program began to enter as many completed applications as possible into the SBA queue for small businesses while navigating evolving and changing guidelines by the SBA and working through the technical challenges faced by the SBA due to the unprecedented demand for PPP loans.

Ultimately, through the SBA’s PPP, we were able to help support thousands of businesses of all types and sizes and thousands of employees in our communities. In the coming weeks, the bank will also provide clients with information about the SBA’s loan forgiveness requirements as the process and requirements for loan forgiveness become more clearly defined by the SBA.

Businesses receiving PPP loans are already putting that money to good use, providing for their communities and making payrolls during these difficult days. Many local businesses have thought well outside the box to be able to continue to provide their products and services to customers while under shelter–in-place and social distancing guidelines. Their creativity has kept jobs alive and families hopeful. We are grateful for the opportunity to help these businesses and our communities.  

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Caring for people and communities

This week we formally announced our investment of $2.5 million in COVID-19 community relief for some of our most vulnerable populations in some of the hardest hit areas. That financial support will help replenish food banks; purchase supplies to help protect citizens in these neighborhoods and first responders; fund housing initiatives, including legal assistance to fight illegal evictions; and help Hancock Whitney associates affected by the pandemic.

This past month, we’ve also been partnering with many local restaurants to feed #HealthcareHeroes around the region, a small gesture of our huge gratitude to local businesses and to healthcare professionals for their brave dedication and sacrifices.

We’ve seen ordinary citizens performing extraordinary feats to make a difference in this pandemic. At Hancock Whitney, we truly appreciate the countless people, businesses, communities, and organizations doing what they can together to help all of us come through these uncertain times. We wouldn’t be who or where we are today without the confidence of those depending on us as a trusted financial and community partner.

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Moving forward

Hancock Whitney has been helping our people, businesses, and communities weather literal and figurative storms for 120-plus years by working together to do what it takes to carry on together and come out stronger. That core commitment hasn’t changed since 1899; and it won’t change because of COVID-19.

Together, with the resilient people, businesses, and communities in the markets we serve, we’ll support each other. Together, we’ll invest in our communities. Together, we’ll rebuild our businesses. Together, we’ll reopen our hometowns.

Together, we’ll create a better future.