Founder’s Message

After many years of practice at the Bar, I decided it was time to reinvent myself and put my legal skills to other uses. It was 2012 and the UK economy was still feeling the pain of the credit crunch. What was happening in particular was that small businesses were being starved of funds, as banks retrenched their balance sheets. So what better than to start lending myself, using career savings and inviting other investors to join me. So Niche Capital was born.

The company took off almost immediately, and in 4 years has grown to its present size with a loan book of £12m and investors of £9m. Nearly all our business comes from word of mouth as we have built a trusted circle of commercial mortgage brokers who supply us with deal flow. Equally, we have a valued community of high net worth investors, who have helped the company to grow. Niche values highly all its relationships with clients, investors and professionals. It is a business built on relationships. Because we are relatively small, understand the business case and resond quickly to enquiries, we are well positioned to win deals on the best terms for all concerned.

Individuals, companies, pension schemes and trusts have invested with us sums varying from £20k to £2m. We issue fixed rate Loan Notes, generally of 12 months’ duration although they can run for up to 5 years. Loan Notes can be seen as a different way of investing cash, at much higher rates than you could get at the bank or savings institution. Of course there are risks; but all our lending to business is secured on UK property, at a loan-to-value ratio (LTV) of under 70%.

In June 2015, we beme regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Niche Capital is about connecting business and investment. From this partnership come other good things. For example, we are sponsoring an eye surgeon in Africa who performs cataract operations and restores people’s sight. We also sponsor street parties in the UK. Having grown a successful venture, we believe in giving back to the community.

Peter Duckworth
Founder & Managing Director