Pinestar Construction Ltd

I was aware that lots of sites were still open, I was just unfortunate that all of my sites closed immediately. This made everything uncertain in our business

Pinestar Construction Limited is a carpentry contractor which specialise in timber frame buildings. The company is headed up by director, Ed Martin who established the business in 2017. So far, Pinestar has experienced great success, winning large contracts and tripling turnover between the first and second year in business. 

Since the UK has entered lockdown, Pinestar had all of their live jobs shutdown as sites came to a standstill and all workers were either furloughed or laid off. The wider construction industry in the UK was plunged into huge uncertainty, as the government avoided announcing an industry-wide directive. 

Pinestar was left with jobs half finished, invoices still to issue and invoices still to pay with no clear direction forward. Facing such uncertain circumstances, Ed contacted AskIf to look at financing options to stabilise his cash flow whilst he was waiting for sites to open up again. Ed is very optimistic about the immediate future for this business with work building up in the pipeline, but he was taken aback by how the crisis was handled in his own industry.

Joanna Hill, Commercial Director, AskIf, commented: “Pinestar’s growth has been incredible since they launched in 2017, it’s always wonderful to hear about new businesses that are thriving. The lockdown hit this industry hard and we are delighted that Askif was able to  provide the company with the funds it needed to keep on track during this crisis.

“Ed’s positivity and willingness to focus on building a sustainable future for his business and his team shows just how important small start ups will be to rebuilding our economy in the future. The construction industry will be critical to our country’s economic recovery, it needs to be resilient to change, just like Pinestar.”

Since the UK has entered national lockdown, Pinestar found themselves in a very unfortunate position. All of their live jobs were shutdown. Sites came to a standstill and all workers were either furloughed or laid off, Ed recalled: “I couldn’t even talk to anyone about the future, because literally no one was there.”

Ed added: “It was just such a strange thing to see. Everybody was just unsure what to do. Initially everyone just panicked and shut all the sites down. The industry had never been in the position before and confusion has remained throughout this period.”

Although Pinestar’s sites were immediately closed, the plan for construction sites nationally was not clear. The government did not release a directive for the industry. Ed remarked: “I was aware that lots of sites were still open, I was just unfortunate that all of my sites closed one by one, immediately.”

Facing huge uncertainty Pinestar was left with jobs half finished and closed in very early build stages. There were invoices still to issue and invoices still to pay with no clear direction forward or action plan. Facing such circumstances, Ed contacted AskIf to look at financing options to stabilise his cash flow whilst he was waiting for sites to open up again. 

After a straight-forward application process, Ed was able to access a £25,000 loan to help stabilise his cash flow in the short term. Ed added: “The loan will really help with cash flow, over the coming weeks I can start putting a lot of invoices in as sites and jobs begin to open up again. Once they come in I’m back ticking over as normal. The business is growing really fast as it is.”

Speaking on the future, Ed said: “I’m very optimistic about our future at Pinestar, I have lots of jobs in the pipeline and I think these will kick-off despite the virus. Construction is so important to our economy because of the huge numbers it employs, workers will be keen to get back on site. With the recent easing of lockdown restrictions we are planning to hit the ground running and pick up where we left off”. 

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