Author: Keith Parry, relationship director of Barclays Corporate.
Topic: Market conditions; motor retail from lender’s perspective; access to funding; keeping your business in good shape; finance types and sources; terms and conditions and funding costs.
Parry has worked with Barclays for more than 30 years, and for the last 10 he has headed up their motor retail team, managing a portfolio of larger dealer groups and helping develop Barclays’ proposition for the sector.
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Ensure that all the stakeholders do share your vision for the business, your understanding and that everyone has got common goals and it is moving in the same direction.
This is really an important one for banks as they don’t like surprises so when you are thinking about your approach to the business and funding it, openess is really important and making sure that everyone, especially your funding group, are on side and engaged early if there is anything you are considering thatis going to affect that stakeholder group.
Understanding what the sources of capital available to your business is important as well.
What are the sources of capital, what is that shareholders stake? Is it appropriate and when you are looking at funding the business are you getting the structure right, is the amount right?
Debt remains the cheapest form of capital for a business. That is not to say just go out and borrow to the hilt and bust the business. But you do need to try and be in a position where you can at least optimise the amount of debt within the business for that reason.
What sort of factors are important considerations for a bank?
No surprise that management is top, not the finance. Finances are important, but it is not top of the list, management always is for me.