Navigating a complex funding landscape

With more sources of funding to consider than ever before, it’s not easy to determine the best option for your company. It’s even more difficult to secure it.

There has been a huge increase in private equity interest in North West companies over the past five years as these organisations increasingly look outside of London.

This, twinned with asset based financing options, public sector funds such as Rosebud and the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF) and an ever-increasing number of so-called challenger banks,  means Lancashire business owners can quickly feel overwhelmed when considering external finance.

Each of these types of organisations offers something different and there is a lot more for businesses to consider than simply the cost.

It’s important to have a clear picture of their service levels, their understanding of your business and sector, flexibility and a range of other factors.

With growing economic uncertainty, we are seeing more Lancashire businesses assessing their need for external finance and attempting to navigate this complex market.

Pressure on business costs

Inflation, rising energy prices and the increasing cost of doing business mean companies are looking for ways they can have greater certainty over their input costs.

For example, we have seen an increase in recent months of businesses looking for finance to buy their premises so they can benefit from the certainty of fixed rate mortgages and mitigate potential rental increases.

Amid this picture of increased costs and a complicated funding landscape, having a trusted, independent adviser who can help you understand and navigate the finance market is crucial. Access to Finance Lancashire has a team of five finance experts who can provide that advice.

The team is made up of finance specialists including formers bank managers and equity specialists with the service being fully-funded by Lancashire County Council. That means it is impartial and there’s no cost to accessing the support.

We’ll help you assess your options, prepare for your application and support you through the process.

Are you ready?

But before assessing the most suitable funding option, businesses should always ask whether external funding is the right option for them.

Many companies are still repaying government-backed loans made available during Covid-19 which could mean adding further debt to their balance sheet may not be the answer.

Access to Finance’s Finance Simplified service can help you understand the principles of business finance.

Our new fully-funded programme, the first of its kind in Lancashire, has been developed to provide business owners with the knowledge to analyse and understand financial statements, to evaluate performance and make a positive financial impact.

The programme will also explore the funding landscape and better position businesses to access funding.

You can find out more about Finance Simplified on the Access to Finance website.

Enjoyed this? Read more from Mark Gibbons, Access to Finance

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