Johnathan Dudley, Midlands managing partner and UK head of manufacturing business at accountants Crowe Clark Whitehill, says manufacturing SMEs continued to face serious challenges hindering their growth and restricting their opportunity and ability to export.
Advent – a specialist investor in manufacturing and production SMEs – has been highly critical of banks in the past year for their reluctance to lend to manufacturing SMEs with potential.
Advent’s key criticisms have been that not only are banks overly risk adverse but that they also lack industry expertise and experience of how businesses are actually run; or should be run.
Johnathan Dudley, speaking in BusinessDesk, said: “Bank lending to SMEs is predicated on the provision of security which many entrepreneurs are less inclined to put back on risk post-recession.
“Banks cannot lend without security and SME customers have no choice but to meet their lending security criteria.”
Andrew Ramsbottom, Managing Partner at Advent, largely agrees: “Banks are still proving to be risk averse, making it difficult for manufacturing SMEs to get hold of the capital they need in order to fulfil their potential.
“Even when those banks are willing to lend, they then don’t have the sector expertise, experience and strategic nous to help point these kinds of enterprises in the right direction.
“2014 could be a make or break year for many SMEs, so key decision makers within these businesses need to be looking to outside sources such as independent, specialist investors to provide capital and helping them see the wood for the trees in assisting with the strategy, deciding on goals and making positive things happen for their business.”
Headed up by Institute For Turnaround members Andrew Ramsbottom and David Gee, Advent Partners meets the needs of manufacturing and product-based SMEs by providing capital and support management.
Advent can provide finance of up to £0.5 million per transaction quickly and hasten the due diligence process.
It always takes an equity position within the business and offers 40 years’ combined operational, financial and commercial experience to provide management support to help drive change and deliver success.