Like many others in the hospitality sector, Ponti’s Restaurant, which has outlets in Sheffield and London, was hit hard by the pandemic.
Having been in the same family for nearly 50 years, it has survived some difficult times, including several recessions.
However, COVID-19 was unprecedented in the way it affected restaurants. Businesses had to close the doors and rely on a takeaway service only.
Ponti’s remained optimistic for the future and wanted to pay its suppliers, rent, utilities and those staff who continued to work throughout the pandemic, so that they would be up to date with everyone when they re-opened.
Son of the founder, Stefano Ispani, who owns and runs the restaurants, recognised that he had extremely loyal customers who would support his team once they could start trading normally again. Although they were worrying times, he knew that it was just a question of keeping his nerve until things returned to normal.
Sadly, his confidence wasn’t shared by his bank, with whom the business had been with for 40 years. When he approached them for a short-term working capital injection to help with the payments, Stefano said they were so tied up in bureaucracy that any additional funding proved impossible to arrange.
He was therefore introduced to Reward Finance Group by Adam Simpson of Silkstone Consultants.
Our Senior Relationship Manager, Alan Sanderson, visited Stefano at his restaurant in Sheffield. Alan was impressed with the way the business was run, the excellent management team, and the well thought out business plan to plot their way through the pandemic.
Reward quickly provided the business with a £100k Business Finance facility to enable it to make the scheduled payments.
Our confidence was soon rewarded as trading in both restaurants exceeded expectations, once restrictions were lifted completely, enabling them to fully repay the loan.