Financing a large hotel project

Hotel and leisure fit out finance
A major bank had funded the hotel purchase - we provided finance for a rolling refurbishment program. The customer had successfully run a 12 bedroom hotel, and had decided to take a leap into a 60-bed development complete with spa and conference facilities. The sale of their existing business had funded the deposit and a reasonable sum for liquidity to get things rolling. Initially, our remit was simply to source leasing facilities for bedroom furniture; however over a 30-month period w...

Limiting beliefs: There is no funding for start ups.

OK, I can't claim to have been in the business funding industry since 400 BC (though I'm reasonably certain that it existed then), but there is something about the claim that there is 'no funding for start ups' that always puts me in mind of this quote. You see, one of the first things I learn on joining Lloyds Bowmaker in 1983 was how to handle enquiries from start ups - usually with a swift and firm 'no thank you'. Roll forwards 30 + years, and I can confidently say that the start-up fun...

3 Reasons why you shouldn’t write a business plan for a lender

All businesses have their own myths, a remarkable persistent myth around business borrowing is the notion that you have to write a 'special' business plan for lenders; by special, the implication is always that figures need to be bumped up, that it should include glossy pages and pictures and that there should be loads of superlatives and frivolous promises. And here's the thing - at best this 'special' plan will be a waste of time, at worst it will be an extremely costly error that will actu...

Funding the fit-out of a corporate headquarters

We were approached directly to fund the fit-out of their new headquarters. The customer was successful - but not blue chip! However as a provider of professional consultancy services into The City, the view was that their offices needed a blue chip feel. With rent deposits and a fit out approaching £250K this was a fairly big ask; however we were able to provide 100% funding by splitting the deal between no fewer than 5 different lenders This allowed them to keep cash reserves to d...

Funding car showroom fit-out

Fit out finance for showrooms
The customer specialised in high-end cars. Historically they had operated without significant premises, relying on taking cars to the customer for viewing. When a franchised dealer's old premises became available they saw the opportunity to take their business to whole new level. We were approached to fund the entire fit-out of their new showroom. When your stock consists of premium marques (no vehicle in the showroom retails at less than £100,000), you can't cut corners on your premises. ...

Asset finance for a start-up opticians

Opticians fit out finance
We were introduced by a consultant who had failed to secure funding via the Start Up Loan Scheme to finance specialist optical equipment. The key challenge was that the customer - a sole trader - was a UK citizen, he had spent considerable time in Australia and had been slightly remiss on UK financial affairs. He also wasn't a home-owner, which puts off many lenders. On the plus side, he was a highly experienced dispensing optician and was borrowing a relatively small portion of the ove...

Unsecured loan for coffee kiosk

Coffee kiosks usually qualify for HP or lease finance, but in this case the supply chain, and covenants from their landlord made it problematic. Fortunately we were able to assist by arranging an unsecured loan. The customer already ran sites outside 3 railways stations. These kiosks were to be run by them, though the ultimate model was to franchise up to 50 kiosks. The unsecured loan we arranged covered the cost of the kiosk and many of their growth costs, whilst we were able to fund the ...

Funding a themed tourist attraction

We were approached by a supplier to provide funding for a new theme destination in the north east of England. The core business was long established as a small manufacturer of giftware, but had a fairly sporadic history. They owned a lot of land and had evolved a plan to create a tourist attraction based around their product. Initially our brief was to provide asset finance for the cafe fit-out, however as the project evolved we actually funded significant other equipment - including a sep...

Funding a pub refurb

Fit out finance food and beverage
We were approached by an existing publican to fund the fit-out of a wholly re-themed premises. The landlord had made a strategic decision to re-theme his fairly traditional pub as a destination bar for younger drinkers and eaters. The project involved an entire internal restructure with total costs running at over £300,000 Backed by reasonable past trading performance and solid research on the new market, we were able to provide an unsecured loan of £150,000, plus lease funding for the ...