The purpose of my original post Banks aren’t supporting credit easing for small businesses was to share our experience applying for a bank loan.

Based on this experience I want to set out how I believe priorities need to change to support lending to small businesses in the UK.

The Problem

The world is still suffering the fall out of a global debt crisis which is far from over. It seems strange that creating more debt by lending to businesses is a solution.

However, if it is loaned to businesses that are creating new innovative products and services then it is a good idea. If it is loaned to businesses with a track record of growth then it is great idea. If it is loaned to businesses who operate in markets with huge potential then it is a superb idea.

The Solution

I believe that banks need to look beyond their standardised view of a business formed by box filling historic financials into a model. In a growth business these numbers are quickly out of date. They need to expand their criteria for lending. They need to identify the next generation businesses that are going to make the UK competitive again and answer these important three questions:

  • Is there an innovative new product or service or an innovative approach to an old product or service?
  • Is there a track record of growth to date? i.e. is there proof that this innovative idea has legs?
  • Is there a market for this growth to continue?

If the government is set on returning the economy to growth then more pressure needs to be put on banks to invest in growth businesses.

Innovative growth businesses with potential.

Posted by Tim Fouracre

Tim founded Clear Books in 2008. Like many small business owners he worked from home for 15 months to get his startup off the ground. Today Tim enjoys helping Clear Books, its customers and its growing team innovate and achieve. Tim did his GCE O Levels in Ghana.


  1. This post was about the need for more support for innovative growth businesses with potential. In the current economic climate, few people would argue against that goal.

    There is no innovation in accepting the status quo. Clear Books is all about innovating.

  2. @Adam

    Should you be concerned? The short answer is no.

    Clear Books is financially sound. We are well funded and well supported by our shareholders. What we were looking to do was inject some rocket fuel so that we can provide an even better service, faster and grow the business quicker.

    I refer back to the quote from Barclays in my original post, “Your business plan was well prepared and informative, and from the activity seen on your bank account, the business is growing at an excellent rate, and have no doubt it will continue to do so.”

    If you’re happy with Clear Books and how it is currently developing then nothing is changing in this regard.

    We simply have an appetite for delivering more.

    We like to be open and honest with our customers and provide an insight into what we are up to and that is the reason we originally announced the bank loan application.

    Thanks for your question.



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