Consort Carpentry Services
Askif lends £100,000 to Consort Carpentry as part of Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)
Consort Carpentry Services provide bespoke carpentry and joinery services for luxury developments in London, Berkshire and beyond. Founded by Managing Director, Darren Saunders, Consort prides itself on exceptional standards of quality and the strength of its relationships with clients and project teams.
After five successful years in business building strong foundations and fostering important local relationships with contractors and developers, Darren decided 2020 was the year to think bigger with his company and branch out into future growth.
Telling his story, Darren commented: “We’ve built a strong brand with Consort, I wanted to expand our reach within the construction industry by building on our successes to date. We can now provide Mechanical and Electrical services, including air conditioning, sound systems, AV, electrical and plumbing.
“We’ve built up such good relationships with clients, contractors and suppliers. We started thinking – why not? – if we’re on site in a carpentry capacity, why can’t we be on site doing other trades? The opportunity is there for us with the reputation we’ve built. Our clients like the concept of having everything in house and we’re already exploring the idea of adding more services to our business.”
Speaking on Consort’s success, Joanna Hill, Commercial Director at AskIf said: “CBILS loans can be used for more than cash flow and many businesses are using these funds to build back better. CBILS funding has helped businesses to pivot and grow by purchasing or leasing property, developing an online or e-commerce offering, or through expansion and R&D. It’s very positive for our economy that companies like Consort are using this opportunity to make short term gains and plan for the future, it just shows how resilient SMEs in this country are.”
Commenting on his experience of obtaining the loan, Darren added: “It just seemed like a great time for us to make this move. We will come out of this pandemic stronger than ever.
“Covid hasn’t affected our industry, hugely, There were some moments where stock and materials were difficult to get hold of but the PM said Build Build Build, so all in all we are in a very strong position.
“I’d had issues with finance in the past which made it all the more satisfying when we secured the loan. What I liked about the AskIf approach was that it wasn’t just a load of figures or data punched into the computer which gave an answer it seemed very more humane. I could talk to someone and put my case forward properly.
“My broker could be on the phone to AskIf very quickly and speak to someone about my specific case, it was refreshing.”
Giving his advice to other companies who may be deciding whether to take the leap, Darren said: “If you can take the opportunity and you can afford it, then it’s a great idea. It’s enabled me to set up another strand to my business. I know I have to pay it back but the rates are so good and it makes sense!”