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Foundation East sees beyond banks' tick box approach to lending, again

Foundation East sees beyond banks' tick box approach to lending, again

Central to the vision of the recently renamed and refurbished Havering Building Supplies was creating a 21st century business with 20th century customer service values.  Until a relatively recent change of ownership, the building supplies business had enjoyed a strong 40-year history as a successful and friendly local building supplies company but unfortunately the current owners had not made a real go of it. Andy Brooks, an employee of the firm remembered the original business and was really keen to restore it to its former glory.

As luck would have it the chance to purchase the ailing firm arose. Andy recognised that he would need help if he were to pursue this opportunity and approached one of the company’s long term customers, Paul March. Quick to recognise a good business development opportunity, Paul agreed to join forces and brought with him skills, experience and contacts to complement those of Andy, which had been built up in the trade.

Andy and Paul set about developing a plan to obtain finance to undertake the necessary renovations and took it to their local NatWest business bank manager. Due to the new partners lack of trading history, the bank could not help, however knowing that less risk averse lenders exist, referred them to Foundation East.

Treating customers properly is a core value for Foundation East and every loan application is given due consideration and support from a highly experienced business loans manager, with solid advice and mentoring provided throughout the process. “Peter Davis, Senior Business Loans Manager, was very thorough and helped us to prepare and fine-tune our business plan and loan application. He came back to us immediately after the loans had been approved informing us of the conditions the credit panel had set. Once we had satisfied these, the funds were transferred very quickly. Foundation East expects us to provide regular updates so they can help us develop our business. We really appreciate this help,” Paul advises.

The Foundation East loan has enabled Andy to keep his job, although it has changed shape somewhat, provided a new job for Paul, who looks after logistics and delivery and created a new shop manager post, employing a former employee of the original firm.

“We have the dream team and Morgan re-joining us is the icing on the cake. We’re confident we can continue to grow, having won some good contracts early on. With both Andy and Morgan showing old and new customers what we’re capable of and us all continuing to deliver beyond our promises, we know we can grow this business, our business and are grateful that Foundation East were able to see beyond the tick box criteria other banks don’t,” concludes Paul.

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Foundation East is a not for profit, membership organisation which lends money to business owners across the counties of Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Norfolk, Suffolk and neighbouring areas, who are unable to access loans from high street banks or require further funds to match bank lending.

We offer loans up to £100,000 to allow enterprises to obtain the finance they need to grow or develop their business.