Scottish hospitality business refinances £8m debt with The Cumberland

Scottish hospitality business refinances £8m debt with The Cumberland

Pictured: Margaret Beattie

A Scottish business owner who faced financial uncertainty after her bank exited the SME market has successfully refinanced £8 million of debt with The Cumberland Building Society.

Chartered accountant Margaret Beattie runs a chain of serviced apartments known as The Spires, but when her connection with her business lenders dissolved due to their exit from the SME market, she faced the challenge of refinancing in a difficult economic climate.

Ms Beattie said: “I originally looked at a few different banks in Scotland, but they didn’t have an appetite to support a business in the hospitality market. It wasn’t until the brilliant team at Bespoke Business Finance widened the search that things started to look up.”

The Cumberland fought off competition from several other funders to secure the £8 million deal, recognising the strength of The Spires’ balance sheet and healthy trading position.

The Carlisle-headquartered building society, which specialises in providing funding to the hotel and hospitality sector, stepped in with a structured funding package, providing funding certainty with a long-term remortgage deal.

Derek Smith, business development manager at The Cumberland Building Society, said: “We recognise a current lender’s lack of financial support can significantly impact a business owner’s confidence, but we pride ourselves on an approach that goes beyond transactional relationships to ensure the flourishing of the businesses we support.

“We are thrilled to be able to support The Spires with a significant funding package.

“At The Cumberland we believe in the power of the personal touch, and we are confident that our dedicated support will contribute to the continued success of The Spires. As we embark on this exciting partnership, we look forward to seeing Margaret’s business go from strength to strength. This collaboration embodies our commitment to fostering growth within the communities we serve.”

He added: “Nick Harrison and Mike Parkinson of Bespoke Business Finance were key to facilitating this refinance. Their extensive knowledge of the hospitality sector, coupled with a detailed understanding of the financial and legal processes, was invaluable.”

Ms Beattie’s involvement with The Spires began over 25 years ago. Originally joining as a temporary finance manager, she acquired 50% of the business and eventually took over the entire company in 2012, leading to the creation of The Spires Serviced Apartments UK Ltd.

Under her leadership, the business expanded to Glasgow, Birmingham, Edinburgh, and Cardiff, as well as the first site in Aberdeen. Despite challenges during the Covid-19 pandemic, the business has continued to thrive since re-opening after the pandemic.

Nick Harrison from Bespoke Business Finance said: “Working with Margaret to find a new lender to support her business was an absolute pleasure. Her work ethic is inspiring, and her vast knowledge of the hospitality sector is enviable.

“The Cumberland was an obvious choice to introduce Margaret to due to their fantastic people-first approach to lending, as well as their 20 years’ experience in the hospitality sector.”

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