It was December 2021 and like many hospitality business owners Randi Thraves was feeling the impacts of a post-pandemic environment.

Even though NSW was opening up, January and February are typically quiet months for restaurants. On top of that, Randi was renovating a third location of her restaurant chain Smokin Hot ’n Saucy Barbecue. She needed funds to cover the ongoing renovations and to pay bills and staff wages.

Although she approached a major bank, Randi also Googled ‘small business funding’ which led her to Prospa where she was put in touch with her Customer Success Account Manager, Meg.

When Meg heard Randi’s request, she recommended a small business loan. “I recommended it because the business needed a set amount of funds and can pay it off over a period of time,” says Meg. “Our small business loans also come with a four-week payment deferral, so it gives the customer a cashflow boost without the stress of immediate repayments.”

Another benefit of the small business loan is flexibility of repayments and a discount on the remaining interest if you pay it back early. “If you’ve got a 12-month term and can pay the loan back in your first three months, that’s where you’re going to see a benefit,” explains Meg.

The speed and ease of Prospa’s application process also makes it attractive to small business owners like Randi.

As a fairly new business, we faced the struggles of the pandemic over the past 2 years.  We love our business and are keen to share Texas Barbecue with as many people as we can, so giving up wasn’t really an option. Prospa gave us funds to keep going when the big banks wouldn’t, and now we are looking to open up our newest location in Penrith, NSW and put the pandemic behind us.” – Randi Thraves.

There are no forms to complete, just a simple verbal application. “It can be as little as a three-minute phone call up to around 20 minutes,” says Meg. “Then you upload your bank statements using our secure system. Funds are often transferred within 24 hours for applications that satisfy our eligibility criteria.”

This fast decisioning process was one of the main reasons Randi chose Prospa over one of the big four banks. “Randi informed me that she’d approached a major bank,” says Meg. “She was still waiting for a response from them four weeks after we’d approved her for a small business loan.”

Meg reached out to Randi just before the 28-day period expired on her Prospa loan approval and asked her if she’d spoken to her contact at the bank. “She told me she had no idea who that person was,” says Meg. “That’s a very common theme that we hear when we’re competing with a bank on refinance. The customer either doesn’t know who their point of contact is, or they speak to someone different every time.”

Meg Clarence Blog 2Prospa’s customer success account managers provide a single point of contact for small business owners. This relationship allows them to get to know your business and help you make a decision on which product is suitable for your business needs.

Meg recommends small business owners to be prepared to have an honest conversation about what you need the funds for and to know your figures. “Knowing your numbers is really important,” says Meg. “If you don’t know what your current revenue is, it’s hard for us to assess if we can top up your original loan.”

Securing a small business loan from Prospa gave Smokin Hot ’n Saucy Barbecue peace of mind. “It’s allowed them freedom to focus on their restaurants that are up and running, as well as continue the renovations on the third location,” says Meg. “It allowed them to have a stress-free Christmas and new year.”

Helping small business owners like Randi is what Meg loves most about her job. “Prospa fills a void in the market by helping small business owners access capital quickly,” she says. “Small businesses are the backbone of our economy and they’ve been hit the hardest over the past few years. I love that we’ve been able to facilitate them through the pandemic and floods so they can keep operating at their highest potential.”