Finance seminar proves big hit


A free seminar to update businesses on what finance is available in the region has proved so successful that further events are now planned.

Truro-based business advisors and chartered accountants Winter Rule and regional solicitors, Stephens Scown, assembled a panel of experts covering all aspects of business finance to outline the range of support potentially available, how to access it and when best to apply.

More than 100 people attended the seminar which featured presentations from the South West RDA, Business Link, South West Angels Investment Network, Octopus and YFM Group, the Convergence Partnership and others, including high street lenders. Presentations were followed by a question and answer session and opportunities for one-to-one meetings.

John Mitchell who heads up Winter Rule’s Corporate Finance team said: “The finance landscape continues to change rapidly and it’s important that local businesses have a thorough understanding of what’s on offer and how to access it.

“We had excellent feedback from guests and presenters and we’re now looking at further events to make sure that local businesses stay on top of what’s available. What was really encouraging was the number of businesses who, despite the current climate, still have the appetite to invest in the future.”

James Orpin, corporate finance partner at Stephens Scown, said: “Businesses in the region have become increasingly aware that raising finance is not just about going to their bank.  People are now used to speaking to many different organisations to find the finance that is right for them and the professional adviser’s role is to help them put those funding packages together.  Having so many providers in one place proved a great opportunity for many local businesses, as was shown by the fantastic turn-out and the positive feedback we have received.”

Among those attending the seminar, which was held at the Headland Hotel in Newquay, was Francis Clarke from the Cornish Farm Dairy near Lostwithiel, who said: “Short, sharp presentations from the wide range of delegates made it easy to extract relevant information, followed up by quality one-to-one time.  The seminar was a very efficient use of our time and well worth attending.”

Nick Wilshaw, owner of Truro-based minerals processing company Grinding Solutions Limited, said: “I was encouraged to hear that there appears to be a lifting of the screws on the loan financing for small businesses and that the old SMART awards have re-appeared, offering a real possibility for seed corn research funding again.”

The seminar looked at a range of different types of finance available from debt through to equity and opportunities for specific sectors from IT to fishing, in addition to general business finance.

Businesses interested in attending a future seminar or receiving a flyer summarising the finance currently available can contact Richard Wadman at Winter Rule by emailing

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