A RISING number of businesses are seeking help in securing funding to rebuild turnover lost during the pandemic, an insolvency and cashflow specialist has said.

Reach Commercial Finance said demand had risen after most of the funding schemes introduced during the Covid pandemic came to an end.

The business is a division of the Leonard Curtis Business Solutions Group, which acquired Portland Business Recovery last year.

Carl Faulds, managing director of Whiteley-based Portland, now trading as Portland Leonard Curtis, said: “One of the key attractions of joining the Group was the additional services that we are now able to offer to businesses struggling with cashflow and Reach is a key part of that offering.

“We are seeing many potentially viable businesses simply unable to trade as they can’t access new funding. The team at Reach have extensive contacts with a wide range of lenders and are able to use their knowledge to help clients access funding that might not be otherwise be available. This could be a real lifeline for many businesses.”

Gary Cain, director at Reach, said: “The government schemes enabled the banks to support businesses during the crises, but now things are returning to normal, businesses need further support to replenish their working capital, build stocks and generate income.

“The mainstream banks are already exposed under the government schemes and seem reluctant to provide additional facilities to businesses that may have existing borrowings. It’s a catch 22 – to be able to get back to trading to be able to repay the government-backed loans, they need funding to rebuild their businesses.”

Reach Commercial Finance says it has arranged more than £200million in funding, mainly for small businesses, typically with loan facilities of between £50,000 and £1m. It specialises in supporting businesses that do not necessarily fulfil the lending criteria of mainstream banks.

Mr Faulds added: “Lack of access to funding is one of the reasons the number of companies entering insolvency proceedings has increased so significantly over the last quarter.”

He said it was likely some of those businesses could have survived if they had been able to arrange help.