A north-west brewery is raising a glass to expansion, after securing a £135,000 funding packaging from ThinCats.com, the online marketplace for secured loans, brokered by alternative finance specialists Sterling Capital Reserve.
Liverpool Organic Brewery will use the funding to invest in new equipment and expand production, look towards exporting its ales and open a bar.
The brewery currently supplies direct to over 400 freehouses across the north-west and nationally and regularly holds beer festivals in unique venues.
ThinCats.com is the first ever online marketplace to enable experienced investors to make secured loans of between £50,000 and £1m direct to UK companies. It uses an online auction, similar to eBay, cutting out the ‘fat cat’ bankers and giving both sides a better deal. David Griffiths, managing director of Sterling Capital Reserve, is the “sponsor” for the deal.
Mark Hensby, managing director of Liverpool Organic Brewery said: “To receive this funding is a great boost for us at a time when we’re looking to expand nationally and overseas. This news has come at a perfect time for us, as we’re about to host a four day beer festival at Liverpool St George’s Hall from 25th September, and we’re looking forward to telling everyone about our plans.”
David Griffiths said: “It’s been a pleasure working with Mark and his team, and we look forward to seeing their ambitious expansion plans come to fruition.
“ThinCats.com has already made over £30m of finance available to growing businesses, and we want to extend this offering to North West businesses, which have sometimes struggled to access the cash they need to expand.
“We don’t intend on stopping at £30m – and there is a bank of funding ThinCats.com is ready to tap into to help drive the economy. We’re excited about helping entrepreneurs grow and take their companies to the next level.”
As a “sponsor” Sterling Capital Reserve helps lenders make an informed decision, by producing a 20-30 page information pack which includes details of the company, the management team, what the loan will be used for, the market in which the company operates, its trading performance, profit forecast, ability to repay and details of the security offered.
David continues: “As a sponsor, we visit the company a good number of times to meet the management team and really get under the skin of their business. It’s a much more personalised service and harks back to what bank managers used to do years ago.
“Today, banks rely heavily on automated systems and credit scores with little room for human interpretation or common sense. This means many good businesses get turned down for loans. By meeting companies face to face we are able to get a better understanding of the business, its situation, and its ability to repay.”
There are no membership charges or fees for investors to lend to businesses via ThinCats.com and they receive fixed, predictable repayments of interest and capital on a monthly basis. Businesses benefit from a transparent fee structure and the comfort of knowing that their repayments are fixed.
Adds David: “We’re confident we can help businesses like Liverpool Organic Brewery find the funds they’re struggling to access at present. Secondary and “peer to peer” lending are becoming more and more popular, and we’re delighted to be able to offer a path to growth to businesses.”
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