Enterprise chief backs Croydon entrepreneur

By - Thursday 12th March, 2015

The chief executive of a leading enterprise agency has backed the claims of a Croydon businessman that the high street banks are treating some small businesses with contempt.

Graham Marley.
Photo by Cobb PR, used with permission.

Release begins: John Harwood is the managing director at the The Kitchen Trading Company in Purley Way, and steadfastly refused to give up when banks said ‘no’ to the finance he needed to develop his burgeoning business.

John said:

“The refusal of banks to lend to small businesses is no urban myth and any contrary view from bank bosses or government ministers is wholly false.

“Even when you give them everything they want, in terms of a comprehensive business plan, realistic cash forecasts and a strong order book, they still turn you away. It’s incredibly disheartening.”

John’s predicament came to the attention of Let’s Do Business Finance, an enterprise agency that provides financial support to new and existing businesses in the south east.

LDBF Chief Executive, Graham Marley (pictured), believes the bank’s treatment of the Croydon entrepreneur is symptomatic of a wider problem.

He said:

“John presented us with a very sound business case that ticked every box. And I was incredulous when I heard that he had been turned down previously for what was a relatively modest request for funding.

“Regrettably, John’s example is still very familiar. Our economy will only thrive again with strong SMEs leading the way. The approach of most banks currently is incredibly short-sighted.”

With £20,000 agreed by Let’s Do Business Finance, John has been using the money to create a brand new showroom for his kitchens in Purley Way.

Release ends.

Release sender: Cobb PR.



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  • http://matthewsyard.com Saif Bonar

    This is a small part of a much bigger problem. The lack of useful support and acknowledgement of the contribution to the economy and society made by small businesses leads to big businesses getting more than there fair share of.. everything. (Government subsidies, tax breaks, politicians attention etc).

    A big part of the problem is the definition of SME – or lack of.

    There needs to be an agreed upon standard for what constitutes a small business and small businesses need to be in a class of their own, rather than grouped with medium sized enterprises as they all too often are. At the moment, whether you have 1 employee or 100 you are considered an SME (in some circles up to 250 employees is considered an SME).

    This grouping of what average people would consider quite big businesses together with micro businesses is divisive and in itself creates barriers to entry. It enables government funding to be channeled to pretty big businesses while claiming to be supporting small and medium sized enterprises. An SME can turnover tens of millions of pounds. At the upper end of the scale they can afford a full time employee to submit long-winded applications for grants, funding and subsidies that micro business could not afford to do.

    By creating a national classification of micro, small, medium, large enterprises each with their own category and parameters then funding, support & resources can be distributed more equitably and the contribution made by small businesses can be more accurately reported.