If you are a small business owner, who is looking to raise finance, it can be a daunting experience. Your local bank manager used to be your first port of call, and they would come to your office, know and truly understand your business, and do their utmost to help you. Today, you are lucky if you still have a bank manager at all. Most banks will have large call centres and online chat programmes instead.
So what is the reason for this shift? High street banks no longer make as much money out of small business finance. Since the financial crisis, they have tightened their lending criteria, and therefore having access to the banks and to be able to speak to somebody is a much harder process than it used to be.
However, finance is still available!
It is not true that lenders are not willing to lend to small businesses – rather the individual criteria for each lender is different. So it is about knowing which lender to approach based off your circumstances, and how to present your case to them. The marketplace may have changed over the years, but the finance is still available.