20 May 21

Unlocking UK Businesses through Leasing and Lending Solutions

There’s a palpable current of joy meandering through UK high streets. Men and women are sporting fresh haircuts. Children are back at school, allowing parents to unleash themselves in shops that can finally welcome customers back. Who knew social interaction and the fuel of a takeaway coffee could evoke such a giddy reaction?

After a tumultuous year, we all deserve a dose of happiness, particularly the front-line workers who have been the heroes of the pandemic. Everyone has played their part in encouraging a sense of community and long may it continue. We shall not dampen these spirits. This is not an article lost in the trials and tribulations of Covid-19. Instead, this is a reflection on the challenges faced by UK businesses, and the innovative support provided by a leasing and lending team with a rich history of supporting a diverse range of UK borrowers.

An unprecedented year for UK businesses

As you walk through your busy local high street with a spring in your step you may be faced with a sobering realisation. So many of our beloved shops have closed for good.

It is no surprise that business owners have faced enormously disruptive challenges over the last 12 months. Organisations have been forced to decrease output, cut jobs, change their business model, adopt new technology, develop new offerings and expand existing product lines. Any management team looking to secure capital will have experienced constrained capacity in the capital markets, a change in lending appetite, and an increase in the scrutiny of applications. Even the largest corporates, supported by established banking relationship teams, have felt the pain.

It’s also true that organisations in the public sector have felt the challenges of needing lightning-fast access to capital to respond to a worsening public health emergency. Capital has been required to meet the significant levels of investment in new equipment over and above the regular replacement of ageing assets.

Support for borrowers during Covid-19

Government support schemes have clearly been vital for so many businesses. The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (the Furlough Scheme) has protected more than 11 million jobs since its inception in March 2020. It has been an invaluable safety net for business owners and workers across the country.

What’s more, support by way of government-backed lending has been essential for so many businesses. The Government’s Bounce Back Loan scheme has helped micro-companies seeking loans of up to £50,000 and the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) has helped larger businesses seeking financial support of up to £200 million. For small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) has been enormously important, enabling eligible business owners to borrow up to £5 million. After much success, CBILS officially ended on 31 March 2021.

Evidently, these government schemes have been crucial for keeping many businesses afloat. However, management teams have still struggled to access the right kind of financial solutions for their needs and efficiently. Last year, mainstream banks were not lending as a result of being overstretched due to their support of existing borrowers or putting a liquidity premium on rates penalising those that needed funding. This begs the question; how have so many management teams accessed innovative, responsive, and tailored financing solutions?

Innovative financing solutions for UK businesses

With a rich history of supporting a broad range of UK borrowers, Triple Point has remained open for business over the last 12 months, providing impactful leases and loans to a diverse borrower base that could no longer rely on mainstream lenders to meet their needs for efficiency, innovation, and liquidity.

Triple Point’s leasing and lending businesses have been actively working to support all sectors of the economy. The support has been widespread: from financing NHS equipment for front-line health workers (including rapid response ambulances, ventilators, and isolation pods); to innovative working capital loans to SMEs. Triple Point has also supported supermarkets and logistics providers for the delivery of food and essentials; and financed property development and large-scale corporate financing deals that have been crucial for providing homes and stimulating growth.

Triple Point’s range and breadth of financial support across the UK economy has been immense. To put things into context: the SME Finance Team was recently recognised in the Top 10 list of UK debt providers (Q1 2021), as the “most active debt provider” in the East of England. In total the entire Leasing and Lending Team have provided over £250m of financing to UK-based organisations since the start of the pandemic, including £125m of CBILS loans to those SMEs most impacted by the pandemic.

Who is Triple Point’s Leasing and Lending Team?

“Historically the goal for us has been to help organisations of all sizes to grow and to use our capital to continue providing critical services. In the private sector we support good businesses with great management teams and a realistic outlook. In the public sector we work with a broad range of organisations to support the continued delivery of critical services to the population.

The team understands the importance of having an open dialogue and being responsive to borrowers. This means prompt communication and swift decision-making that ensures borrowers are not kept waiting for sustained periods, as can be the case with more traditional lenders. The mission is to be a responsible lender, offering a tailored experience as reflected in the broad range of businesses and industries we support.”

Neil Richards is Head of Triple Point’s Leasing and Lending Team. Neil oversees a team of 30 experienced financial professionals. Together they provide diverse debt financing across UK public and private sectors and manage over £630m of AUM.

“Over the last 12 months our focus has been on understanding the needs of our new and existing borrowers and providing capital quickly, that addresses their requirements. We continue to proactively look for borrowers that are not being served sufficiently by the current funding marketplace. This mission is achieved through the active work of our team across our five pillars”.

The five pillars of Triple Point’s Leasing and Lending Team

Public Sector Leasing. Led by Caroline Davis, the team focuses on the provision of operating and financing leases to a range of public sector organisations including Local Authorities, NHS Trusts and Ambulance Trusts. The team ramped up support for the NHS providing over £6 million for ambulance Trusts. The team also financed IT equipment for schools worth over £590K, to enable home schooling for primary and secondary school children.

Private Sector Leasing. Led by Steve Gordon, the team provides innovative finance solutions to the private sector support the financing of hard and soft assets. During the pandemic we supported waste management businesses, managed IT providers, logistics providers and others with over £40m of new funding.

SME Finance. Led by Toby Furnivall, this team was developed to provide Senior Term Debt & Working Capital Loans of £500k to £7.5m to trading UK SMEs, for up to 5 years, enabling them to grow and prosper. Having joined as an accredited lender of the CBILS programme in May 2020, the team has deployed £125m CBILS lending to support the most impacted SMES.

Property Finance. Led by Andrew Stoneman, the team provide short-term bridge-financing to businesses/developers looking to acquire assets. The team has enabled the continued construction of residential houses, apartments and supported living properties by providing £90m of financing to support the building of 140 houses, 87 supported living units and 100 apartments.

Working Capital Finance. Led by Gavin Maitland-Smith, the team provides a range of facilities to support trading businesses manage their working capital cycle more efficiently. During the pandemic the team has provided support to a diverse borrower base including a regional food retailer, a UK based engineering group and a local TV content creator.

What does the future look like for UK businesses?

As companies traverse the ‘new normal’ and prepare for the future it is vital that they feel supported, more so now than ever. Good businesses deserve to flourish, and Triple Point is dedicated to empowering organisations throughout the UK with the support they require.

Triple Point recognises the monumental challenges business owners and service providers have faced not only over the past year. Both public and private sectors have benefitted from our commitment. We have helped keep public services running, provided forbearance support to the leisure sector, and supported the private sector’s transition to working from home through investment in technology and software. Backing companies throughout this period continues to be incredibly important.

Triple Point's leasing and lending businesses are well-capitalised, well resourced, and liquid. We remain committed to helping borrowers find their way through challenging times and enabling them to maximise their growth potential.