Bibby Financial Services adds £50m to NW SME pot



The financial services arm of Bibby Line Group, the Liverpool based company, has committed a further £50m to the funding it has made available for SMEs in the North West.

Bibby Financial Services says it has now ring-fenced £150m for SMEs amid strong demand for lending as small firms struggle to access affordable finance from high street banks.

Bibby Financial, has more than 300 clients in Liverpool and some 650 across the North West.

In 2011 its invoice finance line handled business turnover invoicing worth some £450m through the Liverpool office, a figure which rose to £1bn when turnover invoicing through the firm’s Manchester office was included.

Last month, Bibby Financial Services UK reported a pre-tax profit of £27.5m in 2011. The company is currently providing invoice finance led funding to nearly 4,000 UK businesses.

Stephen Johnson, head of sales at Bibby Financial Services North West, said:

“We typically provide facilities for companies turning over up to £10m – precisely those businesses hardest hit by the credit crunch.

“More and more businesses are learning, however, that invoice finance is no longer a lending solution of last resort but is in fact a very cost-effective and flexible way of managing cash flow.

“We are increasingly finding accountants and other intermediaries referring business to us as a first option for their clients ahead of the banks.

“This focus will help us to continue to grow what is already a very healthy Liverpool client list, many of them owner-managed businesses experiencing rapid growth and expansion.”

With annual turnover of more than £1bn, family owned Bibby Line Group’s other activities include shipping, retail, logistics and business support.