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Speaking at ART’s Annual General Meeting, Craig Errington, Chair of ART and Chief Executive of Wesleyan Assurance Society told members and guests that considerable progress had been made since he became Chair in 2011 and that there were exciting plans in place for growth and development in the year ahead. “My mission is to increase the impact and visibility of ART,” he said.
Thanks to funding from Unity Trust Bank and the Government’s Regional Growth Fund, ART is aiming for a 45% increase in lending and will be working with partners to extend its reach beyond Birmingham and Solihull. It will have doubled the amount of money available to lend to businesses over the past two years.
Steve Walker, Chief Executive of ART said: “We have never been more needed in our 16- year history than we are today. Our mission includes supporting local jobs and enterprise, promoting equality of opportunity in access to finance and encouraging a culture of social investment.”
He continued: “We take a personal approach to assessing applications and lend to businesses which don’t meet the banks’ criteria, but who nevertheless have viable plans for expansion, diversification, job creation or preservation. We often lend to support cashflow. We are planning significant expansion in the year ahead and look forward to helping many more businesses achieve their mission.”