Former corporate banker Tom Wilkinson is supporting jobs and business growth by finding vital finance for companies. Tom set up Beta Commercial Finance two years ago from offices in the Old Chapel, Alton.
Recent successes for Beta Commercial Finance include arranging finance for the new Daisy Bank Business Centre, Cheadle. Tom worked with Natalie Hewitt and Mark Carr, business partners at HCA Developments to ensure money was in place to redevelop the former care home.
Daisy Bank has been transformed into 14 serviced offices and the Hub, a space designed to accommodate up to eight-desks in a flexible, open plan work space.
“The first four companies have now moved into Daisy Bank and it is satisfying to see the financial support that we provided translating into jobs on the ground,” said Tom.
Natalie is a partner in a growing business, Hewitt & Carr Architects. The Daisy Bank development arose after Hewitt & Carr began to search for additional office space in the Cheadle area.
Explained Natalie: “We were beginning to outgrow our offices in Cross Street and we were aware of other businesses that were looking to grow, looking for new premises and looking to re-locate. With this in mind, we started looking for opportunities and found that there was nothing like this development in the Staffordshire Moorlands area. Our aim was to create a serviced office business centre that would create a thriving business community. We wanted it to support smaller start-ups, help business grow and to create hot desking space for home workers looking to benefit from a business environment.”
“We needed to raise development funding and turned to Tom after meeting him at a Leek Business for Breakfast meeting. We challenged him to create a competitive funding package to allow us to purchase and refurbish the building. It was a complicated funding solution, with many elements that needed to take account of the fact we were applying for Rural Enterprise Programme grant funding.
“There’s no doubt that Tom’s input was crucial to the viability of the project. It became clear that Tom could take on a complicated project and use his knowledge to create both the best and most effective funding solution to fit a project.”
Natalie said that Daisy Bank was on course to create new jobs and business growth which will benefit the local economy. Daisy Bank has now become the new headquarters for Hewitt and Carr, a growing architects practice that was desperately in need of more office space. Other companies who have taken offices at Daisy Bank are Yellow Circle Web Solutions, Premier Tax Solutions and Moorlands Contract Cleaning.
Negotiations are on-going with other companies and there are also plans to offer so-called hot desks for small businesses needing flexible office space.
Beta Commercial Finance celebrated its second anniversary this summer. Tom said: “I worked in the commercial banking sector for RBS and particularly enjoyed building relationships with companies and supporting their growth plans.
“Going into business means that I can access the whole of the market when sourcing lending solutions for businesses. Every business is different and has individual requirements. HCA Developments are an ideal client as it would not have been simple to just go to one bank to get an off the shelf solution. We have contacts with numerous lenders and ensure that they are fully briefed on our clients’ requirements.”
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