I approached SMF for a loan to get my nail polish manufacturing business in Invergordon off the ground after being turned down by banks, or only offered a loan with high interest rates.
Working previously as a chartered engineer in Glasgow, I wanted to move back to the Highlands to raise my young family. Using previous industry relationships, technical expertise and the opportunity to start a new family business working closely with my father, the idea for SMC Cosmetics was born.
Nail polish involves flammable raw materials and the start-up cost is significant, so there was a big hurdle to overcome to raise enough funding. The company’s start-up status also meant banks tended to categorise the business as high-risk, so sourcing an affordable loan was almost impossible.
That was until I contacted SMF and they stepped in to help SMC Cosmetics UK at a critical time during the start-up phase, ensuring the final stages of the business plan could be executed effectively. Where banks and other sources of finance were looking to charge high rates or take equity, SMF showed their focus was firmly on local, economic growth.
The business and mentor support we received from our Loan Officer, Murray Marshall, during this time was invaluable to SMC Cosmetics UK and he ensured our loan was provided in a short time-scale, enabling us to get the funding we needed at such a crucial stage to realise our business plan.
Andy Pearson is founder and managing director of SMC Cosmetics UK.
The Scottish Microfinance Fund is delivered by DSL Business Finance Ltd on behalf of the Scottish Government with support from ERDF and the Start Up Loans Company for whom DSL is the only Scottish based delivery partner.
Since launching in December 2016, The Scottish Microfinance Fund (SMF) has lent over £1.7 million of its £6 million funding pot to more than 100 businesses, creating over 200 jobs and supporting entrepreneurship across the country.
Tagged With: SMF; business; loan; finance