Our Bristol-based principal Lauren Couch can help you to fund promising firms that need support. Here, she explains how she can make CBILS work where traditional lenders cannot
Before taking up my role as a principal at BOOST&Co, I worked at RBS as a banking relationship manager for 15 years. I therefore know that one of the worst things that can happen to you as a bank manager is to lose one of your clients. So times like these are difficult: you have brilliant businesses that desperately need money but you can’t give it to them.
During the 2008 financial crisis, I worked on a portfolio in London where we were tightly constrained (and rightly so) by our own lending policy. I was fearful of losing good businesses and wanted to do anything I could to help, which seems to be very similar to what some of my former banking colleagues are experiencing at the moment.
Times are tough, but we can help
If you have a dynamic, growing business in your portfolio – a business that you love and really want to support – but you are constrained by your own rules, or need greater flexibility, then we are able to help.
- We can lend against future forecast income (something that banks cannot do), so we can generally lend at a higher quantum, or at an earlier stage – supporting businesses that are on the road to profitability but are not quite there yet.
- We have teamed up with our partner, Growth Lending, an accredited provider of the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) – so all of our expertise in working with fast-growing, innovative SMEs is driving Growth Lending’s CBILS loans.
We’re not a bank; we don’t require the transfer of any banking relationship and we don’t want to step on your toes. We can simply act as an independent, light-touch finance provider, to help you support the companies you really care about.
We support accountants, lawyers and VCs too
This doesn’t just apply to bank managers – if you’re an accountant or a lawyer and know a business that has been turned down for CBILS, or does not have the amount of money that they require, Growth Lending is keen to support them too.
The same goes for VCT or PE houses that have already lent money to businesses and are now capped-out. Growth Lending’s CBILS products can be used in addition to private equity or VCT funding, and we only require a first-ranking debenture, so you don’t need to worry that our involvement will dilute yours.
The other positive is that our products can be used for acquisitions where VCT money cannot, so working with us could also help you to support the expansion plans of businesses in your portfolio.
We make things easier, not more complicated
We work on the basis that we assess innovative businesses and give them the cash they need, leaving them free to do with it what they wish. We won’t impose upon them another relationship manager and they won’t need to hold a lot of additional meetings on top of those with their regular bank. We want to help you make their lives easier, not add to their workload.
Team up or lose out
The end of the last financial crisis saw the creation of businesses such as WhatsApp, Venmo, Uber and Airbnb, so the last thing you want is to lose a fantastic business now and watch from the sidelines as it becomes the next big thing. Aside from losing out to the competition, it’s a special experience to be a part of these companies’ journeys – so let us help you stay on board for the ride.