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The Gap Partnership

Midlands SME funding bodies may merge

Two bodies that lend to small businesses when banks won't are in merger talks.

28 December 2012

Merger and acquisition consultants may be kept busy over the coming weeks by two small and medium enterprise (SME) funding bodies, who are engaged in negotiations over a possible merger.

Birmingham-based Aston Reinvestment Trust (ART) and the Black Country Reinvestment Society (BRCS) both lend sums of up to £100,000 to small firms unable to get finance from banks and their respective boards are hoping to get an agreement in place in the new year, the Business Desk reports.

Any deal would be subject to due diligence and the approval of member investors, while the merger would involve retaining all 14 staff across the two companies, along with the retention of existing clients while additional ones are sought.

ART is the largest community development finance institution in the UK, having lent over £11 million to 500 companies since its formation in 1997.

Its investors include Jaguar, Barclays, West Bromwich Building Society, Sir Adrian Cadbury, Lord Digby Jones and IMI.

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