Roger Glennie - a long-standing Close Brothers Asset Finance customer - runs a unique operation. The underlying business is a successful farming and agricultural contracting set-up; however, diversifying into new areas has allowed him to capitalise on unlikely opportunities – like the festive season.
Having landed a contract with a large European Christmas tree production company, Roger had scope to increase his workload with them thanks to a new five-year deal – a chance he felt was too good to miss. To fully benefit from the opportunity Roger needed funding for a specialist Christmas tree harvester.
Although Roger had built up a strong relationship with the Christmas tree producer there were three key funding challenges threatening his chances of securing the specialist kit required:
- Firstly, Roger was facing tight time constraints. Because of the seasonal nature of the Christmas tree business (there is only a 5-week period to harvest the trees), Roger had limited time to secure the funding he needed to get the specialist kit in place – a challenge too far for some funders
- Secondly, the assets being purchased were specialised and specifically tailored to the Christmas tree industry. Many lenders are wary of lending against specialised assets
- Thirdly, the assets would be sourced from a foreign supplier, who required a large deposit. Many traditional lenders reject similar applications outright
Roger contacted the Close Brothers Asset Finance team in Scotland who - as a first step - provided him with a short-term refinance facility on standard agricultural equipment, allowing the release of the 50% advanced deposit required by the overseas supplier. By using refinance to cover the payment, Roger did not have to worry about the impact a deposit could have on cash flow.
Once the assets arrived in the country, Close Brothers Asset Finance provided 100% asset funding on the specialist kit, with additional security against some standard agricultural equipment. The deal was paid to the supplier in Euros, with exchange risk indemnified by the customer.
The Scotland team worked closely with Roger to draw up an agreement tailored to suit his needs, which in this case meant building a payment structure to suit the seasonal nature of the Christmas tree contract.
To further minimise Roger’s initial outlay, a VAT deferral was also provided.
Roger Glennie: “Having dealt with Close Brothers Asset finance previously, when we needed a quick decision and assistance for the purchase of Christmas tree harvesters for a new contract, we approached them to find a solution that worked for both parties. We were delighted with the service and decision process provided by Close Brothers."
- Roger was able to purchase the harvesters in time to undertake the full five weeks’ worth of work
- Cash flow was unaffected thanks to the flexible funding solution
- A five-year payment schedule was created to complement the contract
- Five years’ guaranteed work provided Roger’s business with an exciting new income stream
Close Brothers Asset Finance: “We are proud to be able to support Roger Glennie as he develops and diversifies his business into new areas. This case is a great example of how Close Brothers Asset Finance’s flexibility can help our customers achieve their aims, regardless of the challenges.”