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What We Do

We lend to businesses and social enterprises when banks are unable to!

Our loans can be used for any business purpose, including asset purchase or working capital.

We lend up to £150,000, either as a single loan or as part of a ‘package’ alongside banks and other financiers. Finance packages are becoming increasingly common as the solution to a business’ financial needs. We are able to signpost you to independent Business Finance specialists for advice if required.

Our application process is straightforward. What you will need is a viable business plan and a realistic schedule for repaying the loan. See our Resources page for further guidance on making successful applications for business loans, or give us a call.

Many of our borrowers come back to us over the years for further loans and some take advantage of being able to repay loans early with no penalty.

For some loans ART is able to utilise the Governments CBILS Loan Scheme – loans from £50,001- £150,000


“I was at rock bottom when ART felt it was worth lending me the money to start Booom TV - with their help I could breathe again.” Raja Khan, Booom TV

“In spite of having a good financial record, we did not fit the criteria for the banks. ART is less restrictive in its lending assessments and very fair.” Keith Noronha, Reynolds Technology

“We’re grateful for the existence of CDFI’s such as ART. In today’s economic environment UK business more than ever need financiers with vision, who are prepared to take a calculated risk and support an entrepreneurial approach.” Jules Morgan, KPM Marine

Read more about our clients.

Contribution to Policy

As a pioneer CDFI, ART has always contributed to, and featured in policy research, including

Steve Walker, Chief Executive, has contributed to local and national government policy on access to finance for enterprise and served on a number of specialist groups, forums and boards, including the National Small Business Investment Task Force, the West Midlands Regional Finance Forum, the Fair Finance Consortium, the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership and Responsible Finance (formerly known as the Community Development Finance Association). He has also represented the UK Treasury on an official visit to the United States. In 2007 he received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Birmingham in recognition of his work as a champion of enterprise in the city.

The ART staff team continues to share experiences and offer advice, supporting PhD students researching the sector and welcoming visitors from around the world, keen to learn more about micro-finance, access to finance and how to support businesses the banks are unable to help.


Joanne’s Florist and Tea Room

"Graham from ART was really helpful and friendly.  He still pops by when he is in the area to see how we are getting on.” 

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Wyebridge Interiors

“I can’t praise ART highly enough.  They were excellent.  Graham came to visit and was extremely helpful; always available when needed – so different to the banks.  The application process was straightforward and Graham helped at every stage.  I would definitely recommend ART to others.”

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Do I Qualify for a Loan?

Yes, if the following applies to you:

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