Huddle Capital has swung into the black, achieving approximatley £100,000 in profit during 2019 and a forecasted £120,000 profit for 2020, following a negative balance sheet in 2018.
Tony Pickthall, who joined the peer-to-peer business lending platform as group finance director in November this year, put this down to seeing many companies seeking finance to seize opportunities.
“The company was in a negative balance sheet position for 2018, then in the region of 2019 it made a bottom-line profit of about £100,000 which brought the balance sheet into a more stable position and we are now reasonably confident on projecting a £120,000 profit for the year of 2020 ending in a week’s time, based on turnover in 2020 against 2019,” he said.
“Whilst the economy is in a difficult place at the moment, it’s a solid marketplace with many people seeking finance for opportunities.
“I believe the economy will rebound almost in full. We are doing bridging finance for people to bridge a gap and are willing to offer security for that bridge based on the projected rebound in the economy.
“The vast majority of our deals are probably coming from people thinking where the economy will be in six, 12 months’ time as opposed to now.”
Pickthall said that Huddle Capital has seen a rise in applications for finance during the Covid-19 crisis, as businesses’ need for finance is more vital than ever during this time.
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“We’ve seen a spike in applications but have to be careful to consider each case,” he said.
“We have to be cautious and ensure our loan-to-value position is suitable to protect our investors and ensure us and our lenders are comfortable on a case-by-case basis.
“Businesses require finance, the government has been supportive of established businesses but there are companies that have fallen through the gaps of the government’s criteria so have been forced to seek alternative finance and we come under that umbrella.
“Also, a few months ago we became a shirt sponsor of rugby club Sale Sharks and that’s led to a number of enquiries with an increase in phone traffic and more Google searches for us this year.”
Pickthall said that the future is quite uncertain with the government considering placing more areas into Tier 4 restrictions.
He was pleased about the extension of the loan schemes but said many have missed out and still need financial support.
“There’s a chance that people have already taken a loan and need further sources of finance but it’s very difficult to project and we’ll have to play it by ear as much as everybody else,” said Pickthall.
“It’s a case of trying to establish what the impact of the new Covid-19 strain will have on businesses.”