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Small businesses enter 2018 full of hope

Three quarters of medium and small businesses are confident they will be able to access the funding they need to grow their business over the next 12 months, according to the Aldermore Future Attitudes report.

This result for the fourth quarter of 2017 was an increase from the same period in the previous year when only 63 per cent felt this way.

The report, which surveyed over a thousand-business decision-makers across the UK, found that business owners are also more confident that their revenues will rise over the coming year.

The methods of securing this growth vary with half planning to increase marketing efforts, just under two fifths – 39 per cent – launching new products or services, and a third entering new markets.

Carl D’Ammassa, group managing director for business finance at Aldermore, said: “It is encouraging to see that optimism amongst SME leaders is increasing, with attitudes towards business revenues staying positive for the next 12 months.

“SMEs make an essential contribution to the UK economy and with Brexit discussions progressing, their ability to obtain finance and help support the growth of the UK economy will be crucial.

“Planning can be a difficult task, but to ensure ongoing success, every business owner needs to have a vision for growth and an understanding of how they would like to get there.”

In total, more than two in five SME owners think they will see an increase in their revenues, compared to 39 per cent in Q4 2016, with over one in ten – 11 per cent – of bosses expecting to see a significant increase in profits over the next 12 months.

Source: FT Adviser

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Distiller secures finance to acquire historic Rosebank site

IAN MACLEOD Distillers has secured a funding deal worth £80 million, revealing that the finance will be used to underpin its recently-announced acquisition of Falkirk’s historic Rosebank Distillery.

The Broxburn-based distiller, which owns the Glengoyne and Tamdhu single malts, said it will also use the loan package to drive its organic growth ambitions.

The asset finance facility, which has been jointly provided by Bank of Scotland and PNC Business Credit, is secured against the distiller’s whisky stocks. Its most recent accounts show that the value of stock held by the firm stood at £76.5m at September 30, up 14 per cent on the year prior.

As part of its new funding deal Bank of Scotland will provide Ian Macleod, which acquired Edinburgh Gin last year, with day to day banking services, including a £250,000 overdraft facility.

It comes shortly after the distiller announced that it is set to restore production at Rosebank Distillery, which has been silent since 1993.

Ian Macleod has agreed a deal to acquire the stock and trademark from Diageo, while securing a separate agreement to purchase the site from Scottish Canals, subject to planning consent. Rosebank Distillery sits on the banks of the Forth & Clyde Canal.

Mike Younger, finance director at Ian Macleod Distillers, said: “Bringing the iconic Rosebank distillery back to life is a big project, and one that we’re incredibly excited about.

“We are very pleased that we now have a funding package which allows us to both rebuild Rosebank and fund the general expansion of the business.

“Asset based lending is ideal for us, as it provides highly flexible funds secured against our appreciating maturing whisky stocks.”

Source: Herald Scotland