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Accountancy fee funder Orchard to float on AIM

ORCHARD FUNDING GROUP is to list on junior stock exchange AIM to help boost lending to small businesses as lender in the professional fee funding market.

The group provides finance to clients of accountancy firms to spread the cost of their professional fees, typically over a period of ten months.

It said the net proceeds of the placing of approximately £8.7m will primarily be used to provide capital for lending to its clients. The flotation will also enhance its attractiveness as a financing counterparty to larger accountancy practices

Orchard launched its specialist fee funding facility designed for the professions sector at the beginning of 2010 and has trading agreements with over 400 accountants and, as at 31 January 2015.

Chief executive officer Ravi Takhar said the new capital raised “will enable the business to grow to its full potential and become a leading lender in the insurance premium finance and professions finance market”.

The financier lent £45.6m in the 12 months to 31 July 2014 and £24m in the six months to 31 January 2015.

All finance provided by Orchard is guaranteed by the introducing professional firm.

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Justin Moss, Partner, High Wycombe, MHA MacIntyre  Hudson