Shire Leasing will be celebrating 30 years of trading on Monday the 2nd of March 2020 at its HO in Tamworth.
Over the course of 30 years, the company has grown from a start-up, founded by two cousins, into one of the largest independently owned funders in the UK, with an Own Book value exceeding £120m, and more than 170 employees, most of whom live in Tamworth or the surrounding areas.
CEO Mark Picken said: “At Shire, we put a huge emphasis on the value of relationships, both externally and those within our own company. We’ve developed an honest and nurturing ethos within our employees, and this is reflected in our staff retention rate. More than half of our existing employees have been with Shire for more than five years, and many have even surpassed 20-year milestones.”
Picken reflected on the changes in the financial services industry over the past 30 years, citing the global collapse of banks and financial services in 2008 as one of the most impactful events. He said: “It shook confidence in the financial system, increased distrust in banks, shook towns, cities, countries and ultimately the world. The subsequent shortage of capital in the market put pressure on all businesses but particularly SMEs. Many failed to survive and those that did often invest much more cautiously. This in turn has seen some banks and brokers flourish and some collapse. The world is a very different place as a result.”
Shire Leasing didn’t just survive the storm, it thrived within it, winning many prestigious awards for outstanding services and innovation whilst the world was still reeling from the global economic collapse and subsequent recession. Most recently, the firm was awarded Top Independent Lessor at the 2019 Leasing World Awards.
The firm is an advocate of supporting its local community. Its CSR committee, made up of various employees representing different departments, organises monthly fundraising events, with all charities and causes chosen by Shire Leasing’s employees. In 2019, the company raised more than £11,000 for worthy causes, including Birmingham Childrens’ Hospital and the Guide Dogs for the Blind Association.
Under the leadership of Julie Henehan (who has 20 years of experience in the business finance industry and joined Shire Leasing in 2019 as corporate development director), Shire Leasing has recently launched a new Southern team, based in Henley-on-Thames, specialising in the provision of vendor finance for the technology markets. The firm sees a wealth of opportunity in digitalisation and new technologies, and has already seen success with its FinTech solutions, which led to the independent lessor winning Innovator Of The Year at the 2018 Leasing World Awards.
Picken added: “Our business is about growth, and we are keen to explore every opportunity for us to do so, whether that is through better funding, organic growth or through acquisitions. No stone can remain unturned and every member of our business has the opportunity to contribute.”