By Scott Wright

SCOTTISH boutique bank Hampden & Co has narrowed losses after driving income up by 18 per cent to more than £10 million during the pandemic, new results show.

Edinburgh-based Hampden has booked a statutory loss before tax of £4.1 million for the year ended December 31, compared with £5.5m in its previous accounts.

Chief executive Graeme Hartop declared the bank had shown its appeal to new and existing customers amid the coronavirus crisis, as Hampden saw client deposits rise by 22% to £501.2m. Loans and advances surged by 60% to £326.3m.

Mr Hartop, the veteran banker who joined Hampden after it was launched by Ray Entwistle in 2013, said: “Our focus on delivering a personalised banking service helped our existing clients to navigate the impact of the pandemic and we attracted many new clients by being accessible, particularly as some mainstream banks declined new accounts and directed clients online or to call centres.”

Mr Hartop signalled the bank’s hopes of winning business from one of its rivals, Adam & Company. NatWest Group agreed to sell the investment management business of Adam & Company, its private banking business, to Canaccord Genuity Group in a cash deal worth £54m earlier this month.

The deal included Adam & Company brand name but not its banking and lending operation, which is now being rolled into its Coutts private bank. NatWest said it will set up a Coutts team in Scotland.

Mr Hartop, a one-time head of finance Adam & Company, said: “So far in 2021, we have received high levels of interest from prospective clients following the announcement of changes at Adam & Co. Great credit is due to our team following a challenging year for everyone.”

Mr Hartop added: “We are seeing high demand for our unique approach to private banking. As a consequence, we are keen to recruit talent with the capability to develop as our business continues its strong growth trajectory.”

Hampden now has a headcount of around 100, having added to its banking, commercial and administrative teams in Edinburgh and London last year.

Finlay Williamson, the former chief financial officer of Virgin Money, joined as chair of the audit committee. David Huntley, Scottish Friendly and Fidelity Life Insurance chairman, joined as chairman of the bank’s risk committee, while former senior Goldman Sachs executive Caroline Taylor took up the post of chairman of the remuneration committee.

Simon Miller, chairman of Hampden & Co, said: “The bank responded well to the Covid-19 pandemic and the results demonstrate that the business performed with agility and resilience.”