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How to grow an events business

Great parties, weddings, product launches and conferences don’t just happen. Successful events - for communities, businesses and families - have to be very carefully planned, organised and run on the day. This means that there is always a need for good events planners - and plenty of scope for you to grow your events planning business. In fact, once you have established your niche - the type of event you specialise in - growth should be a big priority. If you are not the go-to business for your sector - somebody else will be! So what are the key growth tools you need? Networking  Networking is at the top of your list when you are looking at growth. Events planning is a people business - the more people know you, the more chances you will have of securing their next event. “It's not what you know, its who you know. That's certainly true in this business. People want to do business with people they feel they know and can trust - so the more people that know you and your business the better off you can be.” So be gregarious. Always carry your business cards - you never know when you will run into a potential client - and always make sure you meet as many people as possible.  When people at events you have arranged have met you and know what services you offer, they may refer business to you or use your services themselves. “My business is mainly children’s parties. Mums talk to other mums, and if you arrange a great kids party for one, all her friends can be on the phone to you.” But there is another side to networking. Networking with hotels, caterers and all the other suppliers in the market will give you more chances to meet the people whose services you will need. Having alternative suppliers can solve problems when one is busy and can’t help - and when you want to negotiate to get the best price.  “I landed a big society wedding party just because I left my card with the receptionist of a stately home hotel near where we are based. Their usual people were busy that weekend, so they called us in instead.” Plus, those suppliers can be ambassadors for your business. Ask suppliers such as florists, caterers and photographers if you can leave a stack of business cards - or even leaflets - in their places of business. Advertising Most planners agree that print advertising still makes sense - if you are careful where you place your advertising. There is no point in spending money advertising in your local paper if your business is aimed at the corporate market, for example. In this case, a regional business magazine might well be a better choice. “Advertising is expensive, but you can’t afford not to do it - it brings in customers, and without them, you don’t have a business.” If your focus is on weddings, a specialist bridal magazine might be the answer - although you might want to look at one of the county magazines, which might give you the geographical coverage you need.  Events such as children’s parties might benefit from local advertising, and your local paid title or freesheet should be able to give you a discount if you take a regular advertisement in every issue.  It might also be a good idea to have leaflets made which you can leave at venues. Many people will approach a venue first when they are thinking about an event. If the owners can give out your details, you could both be looking forward to extra business. Looking to grow your events business and bring in more clients but unsure how to cover the additional expense? Find out what funding solutions are available for Events Management businesses, or apply today  Online advertising The rules of advertising and marketing have been turned upside down by the internet. Most people spend more time on their screen and mobiles than they do reading papers and magazines. “You can’t not be online these days. If they can’t find you online, people think you have gone out of business.” Despite what you might think, it is relatively simple, not only to advertise online but to do so in a way that only reaches people likely to be your target market. You may need some specialist help from an online marketing agency, but you should be able to look forward to a steady stream of enquiries from online contacts. You may also be able to use email marketing to go direct to the inboxes of decision-makers in business who may be in need of your services. It is also possible to buy in the lists of people you need, complete with names and email addresses but, again, getting the help of specialist online marketers may be essential.  Your website Both online advertising and email contacts will need the support of a website. Having a website for your events business is now essential - potential customers will check out your website and make a decision about whether or not to do business with you before they even think about calling you. “You need a good website because it represents your business online. It has to look professional, and look right for the kind of clients you want - and make it easy for them to call you.” This means your website must be professionally designed and built if it is to give the right impression of your business. Include pictures of events you have run in the past, list your services and ensure that your content appeals to the people you want to work with. A fun site might be ideal if you are doing hen parties - but it will put off corporate clients who want a businesslike approach.  Look at what your competitors are doing on their websites. See what they are doing that is right - and how you could do it better.  Also, make it easy to contact you via your website. Include your phone, mobile and email - and your photograph. It can be a big help in persuading people to contact you as they feel they already have an idea of who they will be dealing with.  What about the costs? The costs of business cards - even business cards with extra features like fold-outs that ensure they stand out and get remembered - is trivial, and even full colour leaflets can be provided at a low cost by your local printer. However, the cost of building a website, supporting it with social media and creating email campaigns and paid advertising could be substantial. Even a basic website will cost around £5000 in the first year, and online advertising will probably cost as much again to bring in the level of response you need to start moving your business forward.  “You probably need to keep your costs down, especially in the early years of your business. But you can’t grow unless you spend. If you don’t have the spare cash you need to invest in your marketing, you need to borrow it.” This may be a substantial ongoing expense, but if your events business has been trading for a year or so and has some successful accounts to show, getting the funding you need to cover it may not be too difficult. It may simply be a matter of approaching the right lenders, and presenting them with a sound business case as to why you need the money. Something like a Small Business Loan can be arranged quickly, and the repayments kept in line with your cash flow. At Rangewell, we can help you find the most appropriate lenders, and even support you through the application process, ensuring that getting the funds you need can be straightforward - and that you can have them at a rate that suits your business.  Getting a Rangewell Finance Expert on the side of your events business could prove to be the simplest way to grow it! 

How we arranged a Commercial Mortgage to buy a nightclub - fast

The way to find large-scale finance – fast The nightclub sector has become a multi-million-pound industry. Some of the major dance-music superclubs with big reputations and serious followings compete nationally, as clubbers are willing to travel across the country to attend them for top party nights and sets from world-renown DJs. Some of these clubs can accommodate thousands of customers a night, and generate huge profits from entry fees as well as drink sales. There are a handful of really popular clubs that can generate a turnover of £100,000 plus per night on Fridays and Saturdays - leading to very attractive profits for their owners. As a result of this profitability, on the rare occasion that a really successful nightclub changes hands, very large sums can be involved. At Rangewell we recently provided £2,000,000 worth of funding to support a club owner in buying a second major nightclub. But we did not just work to find a lender who could offer the scale of funding required - we used our expertise to help the owner move fast enough to secure the deal. The challenge The club – situated in an Essex commuter town - has built a national reputation, having been open for more than 20 years and attracting customers, not just from the local areas and around the M25 – but coach parties from as far away as Manchester too. The owner had built the business up from its launch but felt that the time had come to concentrate on his other business interests. He valued the business at £3,200,000 – and had found a buyer prepared to offer the asking price. However, this buyer was having difficulty raising the funding required. At Rangewell, we were approached by another London nightclub owner whose club had reached capacity – and who saw the potential in the Essex venue as an extension to his own business. He was prepared to offer an additional £100,000 in order to secure the club. Naturally, the owner was happy to accept the counteroffer – but he wanted to release funds as soon as possible to support a property development project he was involved in. He would only accept the new offer if the London club owner could provide the funds before the first potential buyer could make good on his offer. The client turned to Rangewell to help raise the funds. We knew that he would be able to contribute a large cash sum - but would still need to raise £2,000,000, and ideally, in a matter of days. His bank would take three weeks to provide the funds required – and the owner was only willing to sell to the first buyer with the funds. We knew that we would have to work fast, and contacted our client's bank. They were happy to provide an approval in principle – but their procedures could not be hurried along, and would take at least fifteen working days – if everything went smoothly. Do you need high-level funding fast? Contact one of our Funding Experts or apply today  A fast solution to beat the competition  Fortunately, we were able to use our network of contacts to find a private lender who was able to advance the necessary funds as a Bridging Loan secured on the nightclub premises – and with the confidence of having a loan in principle agreed by a high street bank as an exit strategy. Costs were relatively high but, with our support, the lender was able to conduct the necessary due diligence in a matter of days – successfully securing the deal. This type of finance is called a Bridging Loan because it is designed to bridge a short-term funding gap. Bridging Loans are short-term loans secured on property and are usually repaid quickly, either by the sale of the property or by another, more economical finance product designed for the long-term, such as a mortgage. Bridging Loans can often be used to fund business and property purchases, but there is no restriction on how funds can be used. So if you are faced with a sudden expense - or if you need finance to take advantage of an opportunity - a Bridging Loan secured on a property you already own could provide the answer - and quickly. The loan can be as short as one day and run up to a maximum of 12 months. Loan amounts start at around £25,000, and there is no maximum. Our client took over the nightclub, which stayed open, and replaced his Bridging Loan on schedule as soon as the funds were ready from his bank. Do you need large scale finance – and do you need it fast? Simply call us at Rangewell on 020 3637 4150 - or email [email protected] and speak to one of our Business Funding Experts to see if we can do the same for you. Our service is free.

£1,800,000 refinance for a pharmacy

Getting the large scale finance you need to buy a business can be a challenge. Unless you are a financial professional with expert knowledge of the lending market,  the work of chasing down lenders and trying to secure offers can be time-consuming and frustrating. When you have a business to run, there are plenty of other demands on your time.  As a result, many borrowers are prepared to take an offer that seems reasonable rather than invest even more time to see if they can find a lower rate. It means that many business borrowers - including many pharmacists - are stuck with finance deals that cost them much more than is necessary. It means an extra drain on their cashflow and puts their business at a competitive disadvantage. The simple answer is to turn to the experts at Rangewell to find the most competitive deal. In fact we can frequently save our clients money after they have already arranged finance - with refinance. We were recently approached by a pharmacist who had arranged £1,800,000 funding to buy his business - and who realised that he might be able to save a great deal of money by refinancing. “I had bought my chemist shop two years ago, with the help of £1,800,000 lending from my bank. I was pleased at first. They had offered me a rate of 3.5% over base, and it seemed a good deal. Then the base rate went up a little and I started to worry. What if it went up again, and was the deal I had really as good as I had thought?” He realised that finance was not his core skill, and turned to Rangewell to see if we could help. “Rangewell don’t charge for their services, so I thought I had nothing to lose by approaching them to see if they could find me a better deal.” How we helped  We have a specialist team with an understanding of the pharmaceutical sector, and our service is personal. It means that by calling us you can have an expert in funding for your kind of business working to get you the finance you need.   Do you need help with refinancing your business? We can help you find a better deal to cut your outgoings. Like our client, we saw that with large scale funding, any increase in base rate would mean a large increase in his monthly repayment costs - but equally, it would mean that any reduction in rate we could provide would mean valuable savings. The client had been running a successful business for two years. He was, therefore, a better prospect for a lender, and that we should be able to arrange a better rate. The pharmaceutical sector is particularly attractive to lenders. They may compete with each other to lend, because pharmacists, like other professionals, are seen as very likely to repay even large loans without problems. By approaching several lenders, we can make this competition work for our clients advantage. We could use our personal contacts with banks and other lenders to go directly to decision makers. By speaking to the experts in the pharmaceutical sector we should be able to get a more favourable deal for our client. We approached several lenders, and were able to find an offer of refinance at just 2.5% over base - a saving of a whole percentage point. This would allow the original loan to be paid off, and replaced with a lower cost deal. It meant a major saving for our client.   Original loan £1,8000,000 at 3.5% above base of 0.5%   Monthly repayment £13,249.97   Original loan £1,8000,000 at 3.5% above base of 0.75%   Monthly repayment £13541.01   Refinance loan £1,8000,000 at 2.5% above base of 0.75%   Monthly repayment £ 12648.04   Monthly saving £893 “I was saving nearly £900 every month - which is a worthwhile reduction in anyone’s book. But I wanted that saving to work for me.” The client's shop was in need of refurbishment - and with an extension to the rear it could offer almost double the sales space as well as a refreshed interior. The client asked about the possibility of adding an extra £300,000 to his borrowing - which thanks to his new rate would be very affordable.   Total borrowing £2,100,000 at 2.5% above base of 0.75%   Monthly repayment £ 15797.85 “The monthly repayment costs were up a little - but thanks to Rangewells help with refinance, I was getting a lot more in return - enough to give my business the extra investment it needed to reach its full potential.” Our client has already started on the extension to his premises, and is looking forward to a big boost in his profits as soon as they are complete.  We help pharmacists - and other business owners - with all their funding needs. If you are ready to refinance your pharmacy,  our pharmacy funding specialists are ready to provide the help you need - and call on our contacts throughout the lending industry to secure it. Our service is independent, fast and absolutely free - and means having an expert in pharmacy sector finance working to find you  the answers you need. To find out more about what we can do for you, simply call us at Rangewell on 020 3637 4150 - or email [email protected]

Finding funding solutions - for the agricultural sector

£30,000 loan over 6 months to buy livestock We were recently approached by a tenant farmer from Lincolnshire for funding. He needed £30,000 to buy a herd of beef animals for bringing on - but he found he faced difficulties in raising the funds he needed.  His usual funding provider - his bank - was unable to advance that level of funding, and many other lenders are reluctant to serve the sector, which they regard as too specialised. Rather than attempting to make a lending decision on a sector where they do not understand the challenges involved, they prefer to leave it to specialists. However, many specialist lenders are becoming increasingly selective in their lending - particularly to farmers in the livestock sector.  There are several reasons for this. Pressures on livestock farmers are increasing. There is a growing demand for organic standards throughout meat and dairy operations. There are increasing concerns about animal welfare, especially on intensive operations - and this can mean conflicts with the constant pressure from buyers for reduced costs. This can, in turn, mean that some areas of the sector - including our client’s - are only able to demonstrate marginal profitability. Lenders may be highly selective, even in those sectors that they are usually happy to work in. The challenges In the case of our client, there were several other issues which worked against him when he applied for funding. As a tenant farmer, he did not own his farm or his home, leaving him with no way to provide security for lending.  Perhaps even more important, he had not been a major user of credit in the past. Working as a cash business may have its advantages, but it tends to mean that you will not develop a credit history.  Lenders always look at an applicant’s credit history when considering making a loan. They will want to see a good record of borrowing and repaying in the past, as a sign that an applicant will be able to repay any new loan. A default on a loan may be an absolute red flag for many lenders, who will simply refuse to deal with those who have run into this kind of problem in the past. However, the lack of a credit history can also cause problems. In the case of our client, because he had never had a mortgage or any kind of business loan in the past, his credit history was almost non-existent. While he was present on the electoral register and had some tax records, most of the usual data used by lenders to determine the suitability of an applicant for a loan were lacking.  Even those lenders who might be able to consider him for funding were unable to proceed without the information required - their systems were simply unable to process the application.  Our client needed the funding quickly to bring in the animals he wanted - he had no other way to generate any profit for his business. He turned to Rangewell to help.  Contact Rangewell today and see how we can help you support your clients - in any sector - with business funding How we were able to help Our approach is very different from conventional business funding advisors. Whereas many are tied to a few lenders, we are completely independent. This means that we can search the entire business lending market for solutions, and because we know all the lenders in the UK, we know which are the most suitable for any particular finance challenge - including those able to help when the borrowing needs are less than ideal. At Rangewell we know the specialist lenders who cater to people and businesses who present a credit challenge. Their services are often not advertised, but our network of personal contacts is essential to locate them - and to arrange the funding. In this case, we contacted one of these specialist lenders and explained the challenges presented by our client.  There were some major negatives. The farming sector was a challenge, as was the lack of owned property. The lack of an established credit rating was even more significant.  However, we were able to approach a long-established lender with close connections to the agricultural sector. We know that they have been able to offer funding for cattle and sheep in the past, and that they might be prepared to do so again.  The fact that our client had a long history as a successful farm operator was a significant factor for this lender.   We arranged the loan, which allowed the farmer to buy in the animals required, and to bring in feed for them - with sufficient surplus funds to deal with vets bills and other costs until they were ready for market. The loan Rangewell arranged: £30,000 at 10% over six months Interest rolled up until the cattle were sold on Charge for loan £1,500 Finding the one lender who was able to help is all part of the service at Rangewell. To find out more about how we help the agricultural sector find the funding they need, simply contact our agricultural finance team.

£750,000 funding to buy a pharmacy - even with a short lease

Banks and other lenders may be very willing to agree funding for an established business, or an experienced business owner. They see a successful trading record as a sign that the business will be profitable in the future - and they are likely to be paid back. But what happens when the future for the business does not look as positive - because the lease is too short to cover the payback?  Our client was a pharmacist who had several years experience running a series of chemist shops. With four shops in his chain he saw a fourth that might be a worthwhile addition to his business.  “I saw the property in the next town to where we live and had a look inside. It had a lot going for it, with a good position and a busy street location - and plenty of footfall. It might need a little refreshment inside, but nothing too drastic - and with my existing businesses, it would mean I could enjoy economies of scale. I even had a manager who I could put in.” It had a good location in the centre of a town not too far from his other shops and there were no major competitors nearby. With a thriving existing business he should have had no problem securing the new business, at the asking price of £750,000 which was reasonable for the region and the level of profit the business was already generating. However, there was a problem.  A short lease - and lenders The lease on the new property was just six years long. It would be impractical to provide the level of funding required - £650,000 - over that period. Repayments would be upward of £100,000 per year. “I knew the property was a potential gold mine because of the location and once I had taken over the business, I was confident that I could renegotiate a renewal of the lease with the landlord.“ It seemed a sound strategy but, despite his excellent business record, lenders would not lend on that basis.  The business owner approached us for a solution. We knew that banks can provide the most cost-effective source of funding for many small businesses, but they have very tight lending criteria that they must follow. We realised that there was scope to get the funding required - if we could provide a way to overcome the restrictions banks set for themselves.  Looking for funding for a pharmacy? Is your funding request not straightforward? Talk to Rangewell about innovative funding solutions or apply today  How we helped We set out a plan of action designed to provide an answer. We used our personal contacts at other Tier One Banks to talk to decision-makers we felt would recognise the potential of the business and be in the best position to help, and arranged a term loan over 15 years, which would allow the repayments to be reduced to a manageable level. We included within this agreement a break clause at six years. This would allow our client to repay without penalty after six years, with the intention of then arranging a refinance agreement, which would reflect his business at that time - which should include a new long-term lease agreement.  Under these circumstances, the bank was able to offer the funding required  Because we had contacts at the bank, we were able to streamline the application - which can take months - and get the offer in principle inside a week - which allowed our client to agree the deal with the outgoing owner.  £650,000 at 4% 15 years term Current monthly Repayments £4,476.14 Annual cost £53,712 “Obviously, I will have some work to do in the future to keep my new branch running - but by then I should have the lease sorted out - and I know that Rangewell will be able to help me again.” At Rangewell, we help pharmacists - and other business owners - find the answers they must have for their funding needs.  Our service is independent, fast and absolutely free - and means having an expert working to find you the financial answers you need. To find out more about what we can do for you, simply call us at Rangewell.

VAT lending and commercial property investment

Your clients who are involved in property investment may have been hard hit recently. Residential Property Investment – which was once almost a licence to print money – was already going out of favour, thanks to the punitive changes brought in when the government became aware of the distortion Buy to Let was was inflicting on the housing market in general, and first-time buyers in particular. The fall in house prices noted in many regions has made investment in flats and houses even less attractive. However commercial property is becoming increasingly attractive to experienced and inexperienced property investors alike. Both yields and the taxation environment can be more attractive to investors large and small. What are your clients looking for? The UK commercial property sector is a highly developed international market with an estimated size of nearly £900 billion. Returns can out-perform the FTSE 100 - average yields of around 5% remain. With stamp duty capped at 5% over £250,000, as opposed to SDLT of up to 12% on residential properties over £1.5m, and loan interest relief still available against commercial rental, income of a commercial investment can now look very different to a residential buy to let. The primary sectors within the commercial property space include: Retail Commercial office space Industrial property With Brexit, new trading patterns could mean exciting opportunities for reinvigorating west coast ports – which are better placed for trade with the rest of the world than those ports on the east coast who deal mainly with Europe – the so-called “Rotterdam Effect” from EU membership. Other property sectors may also benefit indirectly from this rebalancing, as businesses head west.  Are your clients struggling to find the funding for commercial property? Find out more about how you can work with Rangewell today as a partner and help your clients find the funding they need  How Rangewell can help At Rangewell, we can help your clients find the funding they need for commercial property purchases. We can call on lenders across the entire UK market, and frequently secure funding for purchases in the £1,000,000 - £5,000,000 bracket. By searching the entire UK lending market we can find the most cost-effective funding solutions, with Commercial Mortgages, Bridging Loans and Development Funding. But there is another way that we can help when your clients are buying commercial property. Where the sale of a commercial property involves premises less than 3 years old, VAT may be payable at the standard rate of 20%. This also applies to commercial property transactions where the landlord has elected to charge VAT to recover the VAT element of any refurbishment or renovation costs.  When VAT is charged, this is referred to as an “opted-in” commercial property and, if the property is VAT elected, your client will need to pay this on completion. This can mean another 20% of equity required on top of the normal 30% required under the LTV required by most senior lenders. £800,000 on a £4m purchase is a significant additional amount to find. Whilst you may be able to reclaim the VAT from HMRC on your client's behalf, they will still have to pay the VAT at the time of purchase. Claims to HMRC can typically take between 45 to 120 days between the date of payment and recovery, which can have a serious detrimental effect on your clients' cash flows. The solution is a VAT Bridging Loan, which enables your client to borrow the cost of the VAT and then repay the loan once the money has been reclaimed from HMRC. At Rangewell we know the lenders who can provide this kind of funding with a VAT Bridging Loan. Loans are usually available from a minimum level of around £50,000 (the equivalent of the VAT on a £250,000 purchase) up to £20 million plus. It may be possible to borrow up to 100% of the VAT element of a commercial property purchase with this type of VAT Bridging Loan, which means that your client can cover the full costs until you are able to reclaim this from HMRC on their behalf. A VAT Bridging Loan provides short-term finance to cover the VAT element that may be due on the purchase of a commercial property.  The terms may be relatively attractive as the loan is secured on recovery from HMRC rather than on the equity seen in the property. Despite this, however, some lenders may require a second charge on the property as security for the loan. Others may make other stipulations, such as requiring the property to be held in a Special Purpose Vehicle until the debt is cleared. Interest rates will vary between lenders but rates of between 1.25% and 1.5% per month are typical. How can you help your clients? The rules around VAT and property are complex.It is not unusual for clients only to become aware of the issue of VAT at a late stage. A VAT Bridging Loan may be the simplest way to provide the finance to meet this additional cost and ensure that the deal completes. And the simplest way to find that loan? Simply call us at Rangewell.

£55,000 funding - with no need to make repayment

Cashflow can be a challenge in many sectors - but particularly in retail. Here, tight margins mean that keeping a positive cashflow can be difficult, even when there is apparently a healthy turnover and plenty of customers coming in. In some retail sectors the internet has taken a growing proportion of the business and in others, such as the licensed trade, fierce price competition from supermarkets means that profits can be hard to secure - and events, such as good weather or a major sporting fixture, can spell the difference between profit and loss.  We recently helped an off-licence owner raise the funding his business urgently needed with an innovative method.   It is a solution which could provide a lifeline for many businesses in the sector - and it can provide owners the cash they need to invest in the business, with no need to budget for - or indeed make - any repayments. Challenges within the sector The traditional off-licence is endangered. Alcohol sales may be falling, and the economic power of supermarkets makes it difficult for small operators to compete on price. Small operators have to find new business models if they are to remain competitive.  However, making the changes required to stay viable requires investment, which, in turn, requires an injection of capital. But when banks started to reduce their lending to SMEs following the recession, off-licences found themselves regarded as a ‘high risk’ sector.  The decline in bank lending helped create a host of new lenders who were able to support small independent traders - and some will be willing to lend when more traditional lenders may not. However, tight margins mean that profits are small, and there is little spare cash left over to deal with loan repayments.  Turning to Rangewell for help with funding We were recently approached by an off-licence which had an apparently excellent turnover of £1,800,000 each year, but which, because of tight margins, was facing continuous cashflow worries. The owner had first arranged an Unsecured Loan of £7,500 to help tide him over - but at 2.5% per month, the repayments were making his cashflow problems even worse. He approached a number of brokers - including those who specialised in the licensed trade. After initial enthusiasm, they found that were unable to secure the funds required when they looked at the company’s accounts and his existing loan commitments.  He called us at Rangewell for a solution. We always work closely with our clients, and we looked at his accounts with him. We saw that turnover was highly seasonal and that it really could mean problems for the affordability of traditional loan repayments. Therefore, the reluctance of traditional lenders was understandable. We were able to find a lender who could offer a Secured Loan of £25,000 for 7%. This might have provided a short-term solution, but it might still mean our client would need to borrow again in a year or two.  Fortunately, we knew there was an alternative - which could provide a high level of funding, without a commitment to high repayments.  Does your retail business need a cash injection but repayments will mean an issue? Is trade heavily seasonal? Find out more about a Merchant Cash Advance or apply today  A Merchant Cash Advance Although the need to make fixed monthly repayments might present problems with a traditional loan, a Merchant Cash Advance, or MCA, could provide a solution.  An MCA can provide funds without the need to make regular repayments - or indeed repayments of any kind. They can be ideal for any business that receives a high proportion of its takings from card payments.  The lender works with the card payment processing company, and can provide a cash advance equal to the monthly card takings of a business. The lender then takes a set percentage of every card transaction the business takes until the cash advance, and their fee, is paid off. The advance is then paid back automatically as customers make card payments. With many conventional lenders still reluctant to lend, it can provide a simple way for businesses, and especially those in the licensed sector, to raise the funds they need - there are no fixed monthly payments and the sum taken will keep pace with your cashflow. It means your customers repay your cash advance for you - and the more business you do and the more customers pay by card, the faster the advance is paid off.  How we helped Our client was taking an increasing proportion of payments by card, which made it simple to provide an advance of £55,000. It meant that he could pay off debts, and have a reserve to call on when cashflow was causing problems. There are a growing number of lenders providing MCAs, and their fees and the percentages they take to fund repayment will differ. Getting the most appropriate agreement for your business and circumstances can be essential to keep costs down. We found the MCA provider who could offer the most attractive fee structures, and helped our client make the necessary arrangements - which brought the funds in a matter of days.  At Rangewell, we can help you arrange all types of business funding - including MCA arrangements. Call us if you face a funding challenge - we can help you find the answers.

 £10,000 Asset Finance for a loss-making microbrewery

Providing a key asset when conventional lending is impossible   Funding can be easy enough to arrange for a successful business - lenders are happy to lend when they believe that they will be repaid. But not all businesses are profitable, especially in the early stages of their operation. This can mean that, in the first months and years of a business when it is still trying to find its own route to success and start to generate profits, that borrowing is all but impossible.  Naturally, lenders are much less keen to lend to a business that cannot show a profit - even when the investment is vital to the future of the business. All too often this can mean that a promising business will fail, because it is impossible to raise the funds it needs to make the necessary investments.  A small Hertfordshire-based brewer approached us at Rangwell for help buying a large vessel that was key, not just to their brewing plans - but to the very future of their business.  The brewery, which is based in a remote part of Hertfordshire, was started by two brothers who had begun their business in a small dairy unit on their parent's farm. Their first batches had been met with some success, and they were eager to increase their production capacity. The challenge It can be simple enough to set up a microbrewery, producing small batches for under £3,000, using secondhand equipment. The brothers had been able to secure the key items such as a mash tank, lauter tun and fermentation tank, plus some pumps and heaters and bottling gear at an auction. “The problem was the size of what we were doing. We could sell all the beer we made easily enough - but we could not make enough to make a profit out of it.” The costs of brewing equipment rise as the size of vessels and consequent production volumes grow. A set-up capable of producing 400 litres of beer on each production run might easily cost around £10,000.  A 12-barrel brewery, producing 2,000 litres or more, could cost anything between £50,000 to £80,000.  The good news for most brewers ready to scale is that funding solutions exist for this type of investment, and include both Secured Loans and Asset Finance solutions. With some firm orders for their beer, the brothers approached their bank for help.  “The bank had been behind the farm business for years, so we thought they would help us out on our new venture. But we were disappointed.” Banks have rigid lending criteria – and under their rules, the brothers' venture was a new business, rather than part of the established farm. Not only had it been trading for just a few months - which meant it was still seen as a start-up - it had failed to generate a profit. “The bank didn’t look at the potential of what we could do - they only looked at how long we had been doing it - and how it hadn’t shown an income. In their view we didn’t have a business, just an expensive hobby.” At Rangewell, we took a more positive approach. We know that a good business idea needs support to succeed, especially in the early stages. We were keen to help. We work across the entire UK lending market, and we know the lenders with a more entrepreneurial approach, who may be able to help when the traditional sources of business finance may be unhelpful. However, in this case, we saw that the problem required more than shopping around to solve. We visited our client, discussed their plans and saw that a cash lump sum might not be the best option, even if we could secure it at an affordable rate “Someone from the Rangewell team came in to see us, and saw how we were working and what makes us different from most small brewers. A bank won’t take the trouble to do that.” Rather than provide cash that would simply be a burden until it was actually required, we saw a more cost-effective approach. Are you a microbrewer looking to scale? Do you need to bring in more equipment to increase profitability? Find out more about funding for microbreweries or apply today Asset Finance - to bring in the equipment required What the brothers needed was not cash - but equipment. Rather than borrow money to buy the vessels and pumps they needed, we suggested an Asset Finance approach. Asset Finance covers a number of financial solutions, which can be used in a number of ways. Asset Funding is particularly effective because it allows loans or leases to be secured on the assets or equipment itself. This means that lenders have the right to take the assets if payments are not maintained - but on the plus side, they can reduce costs compared with conventional business loans. What’s more, because the funding was secured by the assets, rather than the prospects for the business as with a conventional loan, it became possible to provide the finance at an affordable rate.  There are many Asset Funding providers in the market, and the difference between the lowest and highest rates offered can be substantial. At Rangewell, we used our expert knowledge to get the deal our client needed. We know the lenders who have knowledge of the microbrewery sector and approached those who would have a positive approach – and who would share our enthusiasm for our clients' unique business. We were able to arrange a £10,000 Hire Purchase agreement over 5 years for the brothers at just 10%. The funding Rangewell arranged: £10,000 over 5 years Monthly repayments = £210.36 Annually = £2250 Total cost of loan = £2,621.35 At Rangewell we can help you arrange all types of funding for your microbrewery business. We work closely with our clients to understand their needs before we recommend a particular type of finance. If you are thinking about a finance solution, talk to our experts or apply today. Our service - and their expertise - is absolutely free.

Weight loss and your Pharmacy

We are in the middle of a pandemic, and many of us have not even noticed. But it could mean additional profitable work for your pharmacy.  The disease in question is obesity. The number of overweight adults in the UK continues to rise with 26% classified as obese. Adult obesity has been a growing problem for the NHS for some years already, costing over £5bn a year and rising.  It’s not just a matter of aesthetics - although many younger people are concerned about weight loss. Carrying excess pounds can impact many aspects of physical and even mental health. Obesity can cause type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, breast cancer, bowel cancer and stroke. It can lead to psychological issues such as depression and low self-esteem too. Obesity is one of the main causes of early morbidity. Around 30,000 people die as a direct result of obesity every year, and many more suffer ongoing health problems as a result. Being overweight now affects all ages, thanks to the easy availability of calories and a more sedentary lifestyle for most of us.  As many as one in ten reception aged children and one in five Year Six children are now classed as obese - and there is evidence that the problem is growing. In the 1980s just 6% of men and 8% of women were obese, according to a Foresight obesity report, which has projected that by 2050, 60% of the UK population could be obese, creating a cost to the economy of £45.5bn. The government has started to recognise the importance of obesity as a threat to the nation’s health and to NHS coffers. It has implemented a range of strategies, from introducing a soft drinks industry levy to warning labelling on packaging and encouraging schools to focus on education on the importance of healthy eating and regular exercise. Healthy living advice, behavioural change therapy and preventative health initiatives are also part of the strategy for change. As a frontline service, community pharmacists may be in the best position to offer patients help with their weight. Measuring obesity The most common method of measuring obesity is Body Mass Index (BMI). In adults, a BMI of 25kg/m2 to 29.9kg/m2 indicates overweight, and 30kg/m2 or higher is considered obese. For men, a waist less than 94cm is desirable, 94-102cm considered high and 102cm very high. In women, a desirable waist is less than 80cm, 80-88cm high and more than 88cm considered in the obese scale. There is a great deal that you as a pharmacist can do to help. Patients who receive one to one support in weight loss programmes with pharmacy advisers can achieve an average 3% weight loss, in line with national guidance. Of course, obesity is an extremely complex condition with is no single cause, and biological, physiological, psycho-social, behavioural and environmental factors all contribute to its aetiology. This means that a successful intervention may require support with nutrition, physical activity and behaviour modification. Setting up a weight loss clinic can help you give the necessary advice and support. Individual and group sessions can be popular ways to build an awareness of the effects of obesity and the ways to combat it.  It will, of course, have the added benefit of bringing in extra patients to your pharmacy. A weight loss clinic can provide: Information about adopting a healthy lifestyle Practical advice, with diet plans and slimming products Emotional support Advice on appropriate exercise Education about potential life-threatening conditions  Families, as well as individuals, should be able to benefit, and clients should be able to access your programme via self-referral or - once your service is established - with health professional referral. Looking to expand your offering? Wanting to increase your pharmacy's income streams? Find out more about funding to expand your pharmacy Setting up a Weight Loss Clinic? A weight loss clinic lets you provide a range of non – medical services to clients, with both individual and group counselling, menu and exercise planning and weight and body measurement monitoring. Naturally, where it is appropriate, you will also be able to explain to customers what you can do to help them with over-the-counter solutions such as diet supplements. But you need to be clear that when an individual has recognised that they want to achieve a healthy BMI, it is not necessarily just about losing weight. You may need to encourage them to make lifestyle changes so that weight loss is sustainable. If you do decide to set up a clinic, you may be able to look at a number of revenue streams. A subscription-based service, where clients pay in advance for weekly sessions, is among the most popular models. The amount you might charge will depend on your location. One pharmacy-based weight loss clinic in Hertfordshire offers a 10-week programme of one-to-one sessions for around £240. However, this might not be practical in every location. You should consider the costs to your business of providing the service, and ensure that it is viable and affordable for your customer base. What about the costs? Innovation in testing technology is bringing more and more tests to your pharmacy. People can benefit from simple and safe testing procedures that give results in a few minutes with high levels of accuracy, and offering this service lets you make the most of your professional skills and your practice. But there will be costs to cover.  Staff will need to be trained, a private consulting room will be essential, and you may need to invest in suitable equipment for measuring body mass.  Against this, you may be able to realise an income form providing the service, increased opportunities for sales, and increased footfall with new customers attracted to your shop.  At Rangewell, we have financial specialists working to support the pharmaceutical sector. We recognise the scale of the task and of the level of funding you may need to set up a new service, with training for a team and a private consultation room. Fortunately, we also know the solutions. It means that, by calling on us at Rangewell, you can be sure of getting the most cost-effective ways to raise the finance you need.

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