“The application and decision-making process at ART is quicker than with the banks.”
When he set up his own garage in 2000 Andy Savery had no thoughts beyond being his own boss and running that business until he retired. However, taking advantage of relevant opportunities as they arose put him in the position fifteen years later of owning a group of four very successful businesses, employing over 30 staff including two of his children.
The group’s Financial Director, Bill Douthwaite, has sourced money from a variety of funders over the years, including the banks, and Andy also invested his own capital into the growth of his businesses.
Bill applied to ART originally for a loan to help with the set up of the Birmingham Test Centre. Before that loan was fully repaid, the opportunity arose to acquire the business that has become M6 Motor Bodies so he applied for a top up loan, which ART was happy to supply.
Bill says he found ART easier to deal with than the banks. “And when the banks have lent all they can, it’s good to know that ART is there,” he says. “Without ART’s support we would not have been able to grow as quickly as we have.”
M6 Motor Bodies doubled its staff from 8 to 16 and increased the number of vehicles in its workshop from 3 to 18 in its first seven months.
The secret of his success Andy describes as dedication and a good team. “I have worked seven days a week for the past 15 years,” he says. “The bigger you get the harder you work. It consumes you. You have got to have good people around you with skills you don’t have; good managers and good financial advice. There is always something that needs attention and you need to tackle what arises – never bury your head in the sand if there is a problem. We have grown and done well even through an economic recession. I am very optimistic about the future and can see further growth ahead.”