Business Finance Solutions is celebrating a major milestone this week after completing the delivery of finance and business support for over £6 million of Start Up Now loans to over 1000 entrepreneurs across the North West as part of the Government’s Start Up Loans initiative.
The funding has enabled 1100 businesses to launch across the North West, creating thousands of new jobs in the region within a wide range of businesses from manufacturing to breweries. As well as delivering the low interest Start Up Loan finance, BFS advisors also work with the new businesses to provide vital business support, mentoring and training.
One of the companies to have helped BFS reach the £6m milestone, receiving a £12k loan, is American food business Whoots https://www.facebook.com/whootsuk. Based in Altrincham Interchange, Whoots was originally set up in 2012 by three Directors, Liam Williamson, Matthew Madeley and Simon Thomas selling frozen yoghurts and smoothies to commuters. When large areas of the tram station had to close for building work, the Whoots team had to completely rethink their business model to enable them to go off site and deliver food direct to customers. They developed a new American diner hot food menu including gourmet burgers, hot dogs, desserts and milkshakes and began to deliver direct to customers via Just-eat, turning over around £2k each week. The team have now used their £12k funding to refurbish their kitchen and dining area and will be re-opening for business this week with plans to expand the menu further and create more local jobs for kitchen, waiting and delivery staff.
Whoots Director Liam Williamson from Sale said: “The Start Up Now loan and support came at a critical time for us, when we were having to completely rethink our business model very quickly. We were immediately able to meet our BFS advisor face to face and worked with him to build a business plan and to draw down the funding we needed, which meant that we could put our refurbishment and plans in place without a negative impact on our service or revenue stream.
“Small businesses like ours need flexible, reactive support like this that works with companies to genuinely find a solution to their needs and help them to grow. Our new American diner business model and menu is proving to be far more popular and profitable than the original business and will enable us to hopefully expand in the future and replicate our independent restaurant model in other locations in the North West.”
Paul Breen, Director of Business Finance Solutions said: “Delivering £6m worth of loans to businesses in the North West is a fantastic achievement and we are hugely proud to have been able to fire up over a thousand aspiring companies like Whoots.
“Start Up Now is all about unlocking the great entrepreneurial spirit that this region has become famous for and we know that the low cost finance, mentoring and business support that the programme delivers is filling a real gap in the market for start ups. Working with our partners such as NatWest has also had a big impact on the number of applications this year as the bank refers companies on to us if they are unable to provide all the funding they may need. This means that we are creating thousands of businesses and jobs that would otherwise simply not exist.”
1100 BFS Start Up Now recipients in the North West are now running their own businesses, creating employment and economic opportunities across Greater Manchester, Lancashire, Merseyside, Cheshire and Cumbria. Start Up Now is available to everyone over the age of 18 in the North West.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.start-up-now.co.uk to learn more about Start Up Now and register.