CBIL inflexibility could put many SMEs at risk

(2 minutes to read)

Trade body urges the government to intervene further as some firms are calling the CBIL scheme a farce

The APSCo is calling on the government to intervene further to ensure that businesses are able to access much-needed finance through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan.

The APSCo survey of its own members, which questioned over 100 SME recruitment firms, found that only 7% had successfully applied and received a loan. Almost a third (31%) had spoken to their lender and had still found the criteria prohibitive.

One respondent said: “We were told that we did not pass eligibility for the CBIL even though we have grown over 30% year on year in all areas including turnover/gross profit and client base. We invested back in the business for growth and infrastructure and were told that we did not retain enough cash in the business – we have been with our bank for five years – no overdraft, no loans – this is a complete farce.”

Ann Swain, Chief Executive of APSCo, commented, “This example is typical of some of the problems that our members are reporting.

“The whole point of this loan is to – and I quote from The British Business Bank website – ‘support UK businesses that are losing revenue and seeing their cashflow disrupted as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.’ The website also states that businesses must ‘have a borrowing proposal which the lender would consider viable, were it not for the current pandemic’. The banks need clear and unambiguous lending criteria to be issued from Government otherwise hundreds – if not thousands of SMEs are going to go under.”

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Almost two thirds (62%) of respondents had not applied with firms citing a lack of response and a slow process in getting as far as application as the main reasons.

Swain added, “Some weeks ago, we did write to the Chancellor and John Glen, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, to alert them to the fact that some banks were asking for personal guarantees and offering alternative products to the CBIL at higher interest rates.

“The Chancellor did intervene to stop this practice but it seems there is still work to do to get this scheme up and running in the way that the government intended.

“The recruitment sector is a bellwether of the economy and the sooner it is putting people back into jobs the better for everyone.”

To find out more about contracting please contact Jaime on 01442 795 100 or email jaime.thorpe@dolanaccountancy.com.

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Dolan Accountancy was set up by Simon J Dolan, the man behind the well-known brand SJD Accountancy. With over 25 years experience in the contracting marketing, Dolan Accountancy has the heritage, reputation and credibility you can trust. Working closely with our sister company, Contractor Umbrella, it means we can offer one low cost, fixed fee package at £95 + VAT per month. This gives you the flexibility of using both our Limited Company Accountancy Services and our award winning Umbrella Service, for one inclusive cost. We don’t believe in tiered packages or hidden extra fees, instead we aim to give you everything you need, including:

  • Free Company Formation – This is where it all begins. Once you have decided on an available name, we will form your company free of charge (if using our accountancy services) and it will be ready for you to use in as little as three hours.
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If you’d like to find out more about how Dolan Accountancy can help you and your business, please give us a call on 01442 795100 or email sophie.lewis@dolanaccountancy.com or jaime.thorpe@dolanaccountancy.com.