Finance 4 Business

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by Finance 4 Business's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Finance 4 Business is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles

Highlighting best practice
Founder and Managing
Director, Russell Martin
Long gone are the days of traditional forms of banking, says
Russell Martin, managing director of Finance 4 Business
and former chair of the Association of Bridging Finance
Professionals. The days of people going to their local bank to
obtain their financial requirements are an increasingly distant
memory. Instead, sophisticated broking has prevailed, meaning
that clients can now receive tailored advice and financial
solutions. Finance 4 Business are at the forefront of this
movement and offer specialist finance brokerage services. To
carry out these specialist services, they have sourced the market
extensively. There are, however, other companies that carry
out these services, so F4B have had to distinguish themselves in
other areas. On these and other topics, Russell says more.
Helping out those most in need of help
Although we work for businesses across all sectors, we have stood out from others
by offering services that are particularly useful to people in circumstances that do
not dispose them well to high street bank lenders. We do so, however, morally
and transparently – not seeking to profit from other businesses’ difficulties, but
instead providing genuine help. In doing this, we also provide some of the most
competitive and flexible solutions that the market has to offer.
It’s worth remembering that some high street banks have very low conversion
rates for SME loans, with one bank reported to have a conversion rate of just 8
per cent. Many people will go to these high street banks and mistakenly assume
that falling at this hurdle means they have reached a dead end. This belief might
have stemmed from the fact that prior to the credit crunch, the solutions provided
by banks were too uniform. For those people who still retain such a belief, we are
keen to show that there are plenty more options available to them. To give a sense
of how broad this range of options is, consider that we have already completed
loans with over 100 lenders.
Ensuring high industry standards
In the past, brokers have established a bad reputation for the industry. Seeing
this was the case, we have sought unerringly to distinguish ourselves ethically.
Although we can provide a brokerage service, we are first and foremost an advisory
service. That is to say, we want to bring our clients to a stage where they feel
confident in taking the next step.
Rather than working blindly at scale, we perform a close and tailored service for
each and every client, guiding them from the initial stages right the way through
»Founder and Managing
Director: Russell Martin
»Established in 2006
»Based in Birmingham
»Services: Specialist finance
»No. of employees: 47
Finance 4 Business
to the end. Indeed, there is a sense
in which we are looking to develop
relationships with our clients, rather
than just completing transactions. For
this reason, we do not charge upfront
fees; instead, we ask for a cost when
a transaction is successfully carried
out. In short, being ethical is a strong
commitment of ours. This not only has
the obvious benefit of truly helping
our clients achieve what they want,
but also brings our wider sector a
It’s all well and good to be ethical,
but it’s equally necessary to have
core levels of professionalism. In this
regard, we are directly authorised by
the FCA and have worked seamlessly
with their directives, rather than
seeking clever ways to evade and
circumvent them. To help oversee
this, we have a compliance manager
(who was formerly a risk manager for
Lloyd’s Bank in the Midlands). Among
other measures, this helps greatly in
ensuring the financial safety of our
clients. We also have key performance
indicators and a team of advisers who
are strongly results-driven. Advisers’
performance is, however, not assessed
purely on results; their performance
is benchmarked against quality
This system works excellently for our
business, for our staff and for our
clients, who themselves want to see
Seeing the good in the bad
In terms of the larger picture, there are
challenges on the way. The uncertainty
that is associated with the Brexit
negotiations is not particularly ideal
for our country or for our industry.
Whatever comes of this, though, we
believe we are well placed to ride
through the storm. In fact, we believe
that bad times create conditions in
which less effective firms cannot
endure, leaving in their wake only the
companies that can provide the finest
service for their clients. We speak
from experience here, as we ourselves
have survived the hard times and seen
some of the less personable companies
The future more generally is something
that excites both me as a person and
us as a company. As part of our plans,
we intend to introduce a fuller offering
for our clients, including services that
are not strictly related to finance. For
example, because many of our clients
are property developers, we could help
them with the planning stages of their
business. We are also thinking about
setting them up with companies that
will sell the property for them, and we
could help with them via taxadvice.
Change will always be a feature of
our lives, but what won’t change
is our commitment to finding the
best solutions for our clients’ needs
– financial or otherwise. We want
people to feel reassured that even if
they have been let down elsewhere,
there are many options. The non-
high street banks that provide these
options may not have the advertising
budgets to bring them the recognition
they deserve. We provide that bridge,
and so long as we do so, we expect
to achieve yet more of the successes
we’ve enjoyed in the past.
Working to ensure
high standards
across the board
The non-high
street banks
that provide
these options
may not have
the advertising
budgets to
bring them
they deserve

This article was sponsored by Finance 4 Business. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Michael Gove.

Rt Hon Michael Gove's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Michael Gove

This year's Parliamentary Review comes at a momentous time for parliament, as we collectively determine the destiny of the United Kingdom. 

On October 31, the UK will leave the European Union. The successful implementation of this process is this government's number-one priority.

Three years after a historic referendum vote, we will deliver on the decisive mandate from the British people. Trust in our democracy depends on it. Until that final hour, we will work determinedly and diligently to negotiate a deal, one that abolishes the backstop and upholds the warm and close relationship we share with our friends, allies and neighbours in the EU. But in the event that the EU refuses to meet us at the table, we must be prepared to leave without a deal.

As the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, it is my job to lead on this government's approach, should that scenario happen. Preparing for Brexit is my department's driving mission. But while I am leading this turbocharged effort, the whole of government is committed to this endeavour.

Ministers across Whitehall are working together to ensure that every possibility is considered, every plan is scrutinised and every provision is made. A daily drumbeat of meetings means that we are holding departments accountable, so that preparations are completed on time.

The chancellor has confirmed that all necessary funding will be made available. And we have mobilised thecivil service, assigning 15,000 of our most talented civil servants to manage our exit from the EU.

We will make sure that on November 1, there is as little disruption to national life as possible. Our trade relationships will continue to thrive, thanks to agreements with countries around the world worth £70 billion. Our country will remain secure, thanks to nearly 1,000 new officers posted at our borders. And the 3.2 million EU nationals now living and working among us can remain confident, with absolute certainty, of their right to remain in the UK.

Above all, our goal is to be transparent. Soon, we will launch a public information campaign so that citizens, communities and businesses are ready and reassured about what will happen in the event of “no deal”.

In my first few weeks in this role, I have travelled to ports and tarmacs, borders and bridges, all across the UK –from the seaside of Dover to the rolling green hills of County Armagh. I have heard from business owners and border officials, farmers and hauliers. They are ready to put an end to uncertainty. And they are ready to embrace the opportunities ahead.

Our departure from the EU will be a once in a lifetime chance to chart a new course for the United Kingdom. Preparing for that new course will be a herculean effort. But this country has made astounding efforts before. We can do it again.
Rt Hon Michael Gove
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster