Family-owned plumbing merchant, Stevenson & Reid, has secured £1.5m from Ulster Bank through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Scheme (CBILS), saying the funding will provide it with essential cashflow and help secure jobs while many of its construction sector clients are not operating.
Founded in 1980, the company has expanded to become one of the largest independent plumbing merchants in Northern Ireland, employing 60 people across its branches in Newtownabbey, Belfast, Newry, Bangor, Ballymena, Ballymoney, Omagh, Cookstown and Londonderry.
Its outlets stock a wide range of plumbing, heating, bathroom and tiling equipment which the company supplies to trade customers as well as to the public.
Billy Stevenson, the company’s owner, commented: “We have been in business for over 40 years and this is the most challenging period we have experienced. The team at Ulster Bank have worked with us for decades, supporting our growth over the years, and they have been fantastic in helping us at the present time as well.
“Our relationship manager, Lee White, was on the phone the very day of the lockdown to enquire what assistance he could provide. Ulster Bank worked very quickly to enable us to avail of the loan which will provide the cashflow to take us through this crisis and safeguard our business for the future as we look towards the next 40 years.”
Girvan Gault, Director, Commercial Banking, Ulster Bank, said: “Stevenson & Reid is a long established family business employing around 60 people. It is also a long-standing Ulster Bank customer. So, we are pleased to be able to support the company at this time. It is one of a wide range of local businesses that we are helping through the CBILS and Bounce Back Loan Schemes. To date we have approved over 95 percent of requests from business customers for support during the pandemic.”
Lee White, Senior Relationship Manager, Ulster Bank, added: “The building trade is one of a number of sectors that has been impacted significantly by coronavirus and this in turn has significantly affected its supply chain. Until the sector gets back to some degree of normal operation, Stevenson & Reid asked for cashflow support and we have put together a package to help.”
Ulster Bank’s support for firms during the coronavirus pandemic has included capital repayment holidays, overdraft extensions, additional lending designed to support businesses to adapt to a rapidly changing external environment, fee free loans, and support through government schemes such as the CBILS and Bounce Back Loans scheme.
More information about the comprehensive range of support measures Ulster Bank is providing to business customers is available on the Ulster Bank Business Hub.