Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC), America’s No. 1 small business lender, today announced it is the No. 1 Small Business Administration (SBA) 7 (a) lender in Arizona in amount of dollars for the seventh consecutive year and tied for #1 in terms of number of loans  approved.  Wells Fargo approved $75 million dollars and 176 loans to Arizona businesses from Oct. 1, 2012 and Sept. 30, 2013.

“Wells Fargo has a long history of supporting the growth of Arizona’s small businesses and providing credit to meet their financing needs,” said Jim Valley, SBA regional sales manager for Wells Fargo Arizona.  “We believe that the flow of new loan dollars into our communities represents a very powerful statement for job creation and economic development, and we are pleased to provide financial support that gives business owners the funds they need to grow their businesses, retain employees and continue to create new jobs in our community and across the country.”

Among the customers who Wells Fargo helped become business owners with an SBA loan are military veterans Bradley and Barbara Frey of Tucson, Ariz. The couple secured an SBA 7(a) loan to buy a mobile home parts manufacturing business, M&M Home Supply Warehouse, earlier this year.

“My wife and I have always dreamed of running our own small business together,” said Brad Frey. “As new small business owners, it was a daunting task to get our business up and running, but Wells Fargo helped us from the beginning and is a significant reason why we are thriving. My wife and I had tears of happiness when we were signing our loan documents because we could not believe our dream was now a reality.”

Nationally, Wells Fargo approved a record $1.47 billion in Small Business Administration (SBA) loans in federal fiscal year 2013 (Oct. 1, 2012 – Sept. 30, 2013) and for the fifth consecutive year is America’s leading SBA 7(a) lender in dollar volume. This is the third year in a row that Wells Fargo has approved more than $1 billion in SBA 7(a) loans to small business owners – the only lender to achieve this milestone.  An SBA preferred lender in all 50 states, Wells Fargo also is the second largest SBA lender in units extending 3,481 SBA 7(a) loans in federal fiscal year 2013.

Wells Fargo is the No. 1 SBA 7(a) lender in dollars in 12 states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Minnesota, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Texas and Virginia – and the No.1 SBA 7(a) lender in number of loans (units) in 11 states: Alaska, Arizona (tied), California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Nevada (tied), New Mexico, South Carolina, South Dakota and Virginia.