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SME Finance Monitor reports that 15,000 small and medium-sized enterprises (with up to 250 employees) accounted for 63% of loan requests in 2010. Whilst bankers are more willing to provide credit to bigger and more mature SMEs, 54 per cent of those who first apply for funding have done so, 45 percents of start-ups are also success.
Better practices - the expression of good stewardship and due care - have a great deal to do with it. David Ascott, Credit Suisse's Financial Services firm's Business Development Manager, Grant Thornton, says to get the best financing deal, "An SME needs to be effective in marketing its offering. This Private Sector Forum proposes important ways to achieve this.
Credibility is important, and that means creating a compelling business case with a powerful, clear vision that you really believe in, "and other companies that meet your executive won't be aware of it, so it's a way to move forward," McCabe says. "We have seen a boxing bug coculture in the banking industry instead of making true company valuations," says McCabe, "and indeed the Forum is pressing for bank executives to gain more regional authority, to be better positioned than they would expect from a regional company.
"However, small and medium-sized enterprises need to improve their play with regard to the information they supply. Mr Glenn Collins, Director of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants' Engineering Consultancy, says it is important to make sure that the bank managers "not only know what you are doing, but also who you are and how successfully you have been".
However, he also recommends that you know what type of financing you want and whether a loan could be part of a more appropriate mixture that might include not only a loan or overdraft, but also a line of credits, investments or some kind of asset-based loan. To put it another way, be aware of the fact that the bank is not the only choice, and make sure that the bank knows that you were looking at the big picture. What you are doing is not the only one.
Finally, a spreads wager not only minimizes the bank's exposure, but if others have seen the SME' s growth opportunities, perhaps the bank should do the same.