Data released by the specialist lender Arkle Finance shows that brisk demand for asset finance from the construction, haulage and warehousing businesses continues, despite Brexit concerns.
Investment appetite was highest among construction sector firms, which posted a 152% increase in demand for Arkle’s asset finance products. Similarly in the haulage industry, Arkle recorded a 115% growth in finance secured against transport and logistics assets compared with 2017 lending levels.
Arkle’s lending to the gym, health & beauty, and manufacturing sectors has also grown steadily over the past three years, increasing 128%, 59% and 48% respectively across those sectors since 2016.
Lending to gyms almost doubled in 2017, posting a 96% increase on 2016 levels, before increasing by a further 16% last year. Meanwhile Arkle’s lending to the manufacturing industry has risen consistently in the last few years, rising by 23% from 2016 to 2017, and then by a further 20% from 2017 to 2018.
New lending to all sectors increased by 14% in 2018, more than double the 6% growth achieved in 2017.
Daniel Bailey, managing director of Arkle Finance, commented:
“It’s reassuring to see how many of Britain’s SMEs continue to invest in their future by seeking finance to help them grow.
“Construction and haulage are both sectors being buffeted by Brexit uncertainty, yet our data shows that many firms in these industries are investing in new assets to keep their competitive edge.
“2018’s strong sales figures aren’t just a source of pride for Arkle’s team; they’re a statement of intent. We’re determined to play our part in helping Britain’s SMEs to grow, and to broaden our asset mix.
“While retaining a strong focus on our core, business equipment-focused lending, we’ve broadened our asset appetite to enable us to lend to more high performing, high potential businesses in all sectors.”