With over half of all small to medium business owners risking their personal funds to meet their business goals, LDF, the UK’s largest independent provider of SME finance solutions has launched the first online, 24 hour, self-service asset finance tool.
The top excuses given for using personal funds include needing funding urgently (46%), or simply to avoid dealing with the bank (30%). However experts at LDF warn that using funds that could potentially risk your savings and investments should not be the only option considered.
Designed as a solution for SME owners in need of finance when it suits them, the innovative lendinghive platform offers a decision in minutes as opposed to the many weeks it can currently take via traditional sources, such as the bank.
The poll of 500 SME owners and decision makers by LDF also reveals that despite alternative finance options being on the rise, over half (51%) still believe finance is a negative term with people having misconceptions perceiving it as a sign of a struggling business rather than one that is expanding. However according to LDF, businesses who seek finance from them are doing so to boost investment and capitalise on opportunities.
According to the survey, one in four (25%) small business leaders admit to always working outside of regular working hours, with the hardest working people based in Edinburgh (64%) and Cardiff (42%). Those that work in sales, media and marketing are most likely to work outside of regular working hours (39%), closely followed by those in the retail, catering and leisure industries (32%).
Three in 10 SME senior personnel (31%) lose sleep worrying about their business and the security of their workforce from a financial perspective, and 40% admit to spending their weekends thinking about how they will fund the growth of their business.
LDF Managing Director, Peter Alderson, comments: “As our research shows, British SMEs are still struggling to obtain finance quickly when they need it, and are often turning to personal funds as a panic, without being aware of the alternative options available to them.
We recognised a huge demand to provide SMEs with funding 24 hours a day and lendinghive has been launched to do exactly that.”
Joe Domenico from Parisellas, an ice cream parlour in North Wales and one of the first SMEs to receive funding via the new lendinghive platform, added: “Since the recession, banks demand huge security (including personal assets) against business loans. I was introduced to lendinghive when looking to purchase equipment for our new factory, and within minutes my finance in principle had been approved which meant I could grow our fleet of ice cream vans and purchase new freezers to help my business become one of the UK’s best-loved artisan ice creams.”