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Mike Durkin
04 Nov

04 November 2015

Spotlight on … Mike Durkin

Role: Relationship Director, Corporate & Commercial Banking.

Business: Santander Corporate & Commercial Banking. Santander is one of the largest banking groups in the world by most measures, including the largest bank in the world by number of branches and offices. In the UK, it operates through 70 Corporate & Commercial Banking Centres.

What do you like about working at Santander?

It is great to be a part of our UK growth; our Corporate & Commercial Banking business started in the UK only in 2009. I joined the business soon after, and now we are a major and still growing presence in the UK.

What’s your specialism?

I work mainly with small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs), typically with a turnover between £2 million and £30 million. They are across a range of sectors although as you would expect, here in Coventry & Warwickshire, manufacturers and businesses trading internationally tend to dominate.

What do you do day-to-day?

I manage a portfolio of the Bank’s SME customers, and look to bring on other ambitious local businesses as customers. I help directors and shareholders achieve their goals by taking full advantage of the expertise and services a major international bank can offer.

What do you love about your job?

Every business is unique, with different goals, cultures, and specialisms. I love the variety and engaging with owners & directors to help them achieve their goals.

It is especially rewarding to work with a business over a longer period of time to support its international growth. Santander’s international Trade Missions, Masterclasses, and unique Trade Portal ( enable businesses to identify potential new markets and customers. To successfully work with a business to help them achieve a ‘Breakthrough goal’ (new products/premises/contracts and create new jobs etc.) is very satisfying.

What are your career highlights?

In a career of nearly 30 years, I am very lucky to have done a wide variety of roles supporting businesses of all sizes from some of the largest multi-national corporations through to start-ups and sole traders.

Working for many years in the City and Canary Wharf was a great experience, and now, working with SMEs in the West Midlands and Warwickshire is equally rewarding.

A few years ago, I was sponsored through an MBA course at Warwick Business School. This changed my outlook and I met some great people and made many good friends.

What’s great about doing business in Coventry and Warwickshire?

It’s a fantastic place to do business. The sub-region has strong growth prospects, driven by our excellent manufacturing base and heritage, two leading universities, first class transport links, an entrepreneurial ‘can-do’ business culture, and, not least, a great community of excellent professional advisors.

What would you say to someone setting out on their career?

Be yourself and show your personality, do not be frightened to ask, do not fear failure (we all learn from it), and have belief!