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Asset funding for your legal firm

The UK's legal sector has thrived in recent years, both on a domestic and international scale. In particular, turnover among law firms grew by 8.4% to £30.6bn in 2013, representing the highest increase in six years.

With business confidence at an all-time high, many law firms are set for growth; and supporting this growth will be investments in key assets designed to improve, modernise and streamline business processes.

Workplace technology is adapting at a rapid pace and this has implications across all sectors, from banking and retail to healthcare and the legal sector. New systems, products and processes are revolutionising the way we work and in order to remain successful and competitive, businesses must embrace and adapt to these evolving technologies.

For small and medium-sized legal firms with limited cash flow, it is impossible to make large, one-off payments for certain equipment. And so, in order to acquire and start using the technology they need, many of these firms have turned to alternative finance, in particular asset funding.

Asset funding enables legal firms to take advantage of the latest technology at the lowest entry cost, spreading the payments over a set period of time to allow better cash flow management.

More and more businesses are turning away from traditional term loans and overdrafts and as a result, the asset finance market has grown significantly. Data from the Finance & Leasing Association (FLA) shows new business volumes totalled £25.4bn in 2014, representing an annual growth rate of 13%. This is the highest figure recorded since the recession in 2009.

What's more, figures from the Asset Based Finance Association (ABFA) revealed that £19.4bn of asset-based finance was provided to businesses during Q4 2014, which itself represents a £1.6bn (9%) year-on-year increase. Returning confidence in the economy means that businesses are focusing on growth and this year, is it predicted that the alternative finance market within the UK will double.

If you are a legal firm looking to fund your growth plans, asset finance can give you the support and flexibility you need. The benefits include:

  • Immediate access to the equipment you need to stay competitive in your market.
  • Flexible payment agreements tailored to meet your business' needs.
  • No downright payment, enabling better cash flow management.
  • Quicker return on investment.
  • Releases the burden of ownership, allowing for greater flexibility.
  • Operating leases are classed as an expense as opposed to debt, so will not impact your credit rating.

This is despite the fact that the government extended the Funding for Lending Scheme (FLS), which was launched back in 2012 in a bid to boost lending to UK businesses by incentivising banks through low cost access to funding.

Liquidity and credit levels available to SMEs have not improved; banks remain risk averse and are still not making it easy for businesses to acquire asset funding. The demand for finance simply isn't being met by banks, demonstrating that the FLS has had little to no benefit for businesses.

Moreover, banks rarely understand the IT channel or have expert knowledge of the sector; they are out of touch with reaching businesses with no inclination of getting to know and understand their customers.

And this is why many businesses are turning to reputable, independent finance providers. Wesleyan Bank has 25 years' experience in funding legal firms and have expert knowledge in the assets you want to purchase.

Every business is different; we at Wesleyan Bank take the time to understand your needs and will help you to reach your business goals. We are the only finance provider to be endorsed by The Law Society and have access to an extensive panel of specialists as well as our own funding line.

We provide asset finance plans of up to 5 years and the assets we fund include: IT hardware and software (including installation, training and maintenance), office acquisition and refurbishment, office equipment, specialist equipment and telecommunications. There are numerous benefits to acquiring funding through Wesleyan Bank, such as:

  • Immediate investment in the equipment you need.
  • Competitive rates on loans, leases and hire purchases.
  • A dedicated account manager.
  • Outside of banking lines, meaning your cash reserves are protected.
  • Accelerate ROI for your new assets by spreading payment over time.
  • Depending on the investment you may be able to utilise tax savings through the Annual Investment Allowance (AIA).

For larger, long-term asset purchases, Wesleyan Bank offers a number of arrangements, including business loans, leasing or hire purchase. Loans for purchasing assets can be secured entirely or largely against the assets being financed, which limits the need for extra collateral.

We can also provide businesses with a finance lease or operating lease. A finance lease transfers all ownership rights to the business, and the company is responsible for the maintenance of the assets. An operating lease, on the other hand, is more suited to businesses that will not need the equipment for its entire lifespan. Wesleyan maintains the equipment and will take it back at the end of the agreement.

A hire purchase allows you to spread the impact of purchasing assets over fixed monthly payments, and you will have full ownership of that asset at the end of the agreement.

To find out more about how Wesleyan Bank could assist your firm with upcoming investments into a whole range of assets including but not limited to; IT hardware, software and services (including training, installation and maintenance), office equipment and refurbishment, contact the experts on 0800 980 9348 or follow this link.

'WESLEYAN’ is a trading name of the Wesleyan Group of companies.

Wesleyan Assurance Society and Wesleyan Bank Ltd are authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Wesleyan Financial Services Ltd, Wesleyan Unit Trust Managers Ltd, Practice Plan Ltd and DPAS Ltd are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.  Advice about investments, insurance and mortgages is provided by Wesleyan Financial Services Ltd.

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