Business News

Why firms shouldn’t rush to borrow money

Businesses should not rush into borrowing money until they are certain they are ready to do so. That’s the view of Guy Bridge,

chief executive Finpoint, Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce’s preferred finance hub partner. He said too many businesses

were rushed into taking out loans, and there was a great deal of ‘misinformation’ in the marketplace by funders seeking to persuade loanees to sign on the dotted line.

‘There is a lot of misinformation trying to encourage borrowing’

He said: “When it comes to

business funding, there is a lot of misinformation trying to encourage borrowing when you might not be ready to grow your business. Stability needs to come first. Spotting the need for investment will help alleviate short term pressures and can be the catalyst for driving your business on to better things.

Guy Bridge: Businesses being rushed into taking out loans

“Once you know the time is right

and you’ve done all your preparation, it’s time to start looking at your finance options,

and matching them to your needs. “Getting a business loan can

sound simple – but making sense of finance options can be overwhelming, especially if you don’t know what would be the best fit for your business.” “Before looking for external

capital, you should make sure you’re managing cash effectively. Being able to demonstrate good cash management sends out the right signals to potential investors or lenders. Preparing a solid business plan is the key to securing funding. “Don’t rush into taking out a

loan. Some providers might try to encourage you to take that step before you’re ready. “There’s a lot of choices and a lot

of competition out there, so make sure you’re being advised fairly and honestly – especially when it comes to fees. “Have the relevant documentation

ready such as last two years filed company accounts, up-to-date management accounts, last three to six months of business bank statements, and a clear purpose for the borrowing.”

Legal profession in line for shake-up

The legal profession is facing its biggest challenge in a century, according to the director of Birmingham’s St Philips Chambers. The director, Joe Wilson, said

barristers’ chambers needed to have a radical rethink about the services they provided, post-Covid. He said that education, training,

the tech revolution and client care were likely to dominate from now on, and this was something St Philips has already taken on board. He said: “Straight away, we

created a programme of webinars on many subjects right across our knowledge base, and we are proud of the way they have helped many try to navigate what has been a difficult terrain. Fortunately, we are extremely well-connected, as you would expect from a chambers of our standing, and we felt strongly that all our webinars had to be of the highest calibre possible. “We feel we have achieved this,

with the judiciary citing our guide to creating and using electronic hearing bundles by Rob Mundy and Ali Tabari, as a go-to resource, and our YouTube channel already having over 13,000 views of our uploaded tutorials and webinars. “We believe this intense focus on

education, training and client care is something that all barristers chambers will need to take on board.”

UHB awarded Centre of Excellence status

University Hospitals Birmingham (UHB) has been recognised as a ‘Tessa Jowell Centre of Excellence’, for its excellence in treating brain tumours. The hospital trust is one of nine across the

country to be recognised in this way. Tessa Jowell was a Labour MP who suffered

a brain tumour when she was 70. She died a year later. She actively campaigned for better

treatment for brain tumours, and after her death the government announced that funding for this type of cancer would be doubled. ‘Tessa Jowell Centre of Excellence status’

recognises the delivery of outstanding care and treatment by NHS staff in their efforts to provide above excellent patient care through a difficult time. Professor Colin Watts (pictured, inset),

professor of neurosurgery at UHB, said: “This award is recognition of what we can achieve if we work together to deliver a truly multidisciplinary package for our patients: patient-centred, consultant-led, research orientated. It is a fantastic achievement.” UHB Charity launched the Giles’ Trust Brain

Tumour Fund in 2015, to support one of the most under-funded areas of cancer research in the UK. The charity has been supporting the work of

Professor Watts and his team and seven years ago successfully ran a multimillion-pound campaign to bring both TomoTherapy and Cyberknife radiotherapy to the hospital. The Giles’ Trust also funds dedicated clinical

research nurses. These nurses enable patients the opportunity to access clinical trials, trials which have the potential to offer patients new drugs and treatments with fewer side effects, longer life expectancy with the ultimate goal of being able to beat brain tumours. In the field of research, the charity has

funded a project where the aim is to be able to provide information about the tumour earlier and with more accuracy than is currently possible through the means of Artificial

Intelligence (AI). This would lead to

more targeted and faster treatment pathways. Cathryn Worth, Fundraising Manager, UHB Charity said: “We have an amazing neuro-oncology team here at the UHB and it is a privilege to support their work. “Everything they do has the patient at the

centre whether it is regarding cutting edge equipment, ground-breaking research and even down to requesting items for the ward to make patients’ stays more comfortable. “This award demonstrates their commitment

to not only their improved outcomes for our patients but also their quality of life.”

April 2021 CHAMBERLINK 25

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