It doesn’t seem like two minutes ago when I was catching the 6.43am train to Leeds for my induction course with Reward Finance Group.
I had always admired the business from the outside and had previously worked with some of the team. Prior to joining the company I had numerous discussions with the Directors where they had explained some of the deals they had done and the speed at which they can operate, so I was really looking forward to the challenge of growing Reward’s profile in the North West business community.
Back then, apart from the Directors, there was a team of just nine in the Operations Team and the Sales & Marketing Team. And, the total loan book stood at c£30m.
As I started to read some of the files and look at live client situations, I very quickly got a feel for what a fast-paced dynamic business Reward really was as well as its core principles – good ‘old fashioned common sense’ lending with no algorithms, no matrices, no credit scoring, just common sense.
Fast forward two and a bit years, yes I really am in my third year, and the business now has a team of 20, with more new recruits in the pipeline. Five of the team are full-time in the North West, handling a growing portfolio of regional clients.
Our core products have been rebranded to Business Finance and Invoice Finance Plus, to give a truer reflection of their offering. The business has secured £40m investment from Foresight Group and the loan book now stands at just shy of £55m.
All of the above has been achieved by staying true to the core principles embedded in the business nearly seven years ago by the founder Directors. As new people have come on board, just like me in January 2016, they have quickly embraced the Reward ethos.
As a team we all work extremely hard to continue to grow the business, but this being Reward we do have a lot of fun along the way!