A Croydon company has been filling the funding gap left by banks failing to provide cash to businesses during the recession.

More than £530,000 of loans were approved by Croydon Economic Development Company(CEDC) over the last 12 months following an increase in applications from firms struggling to make ends meet.

Keith Miller, senior fund manager with the CEDC, said although business was beginning to pick up firms were still struggling to get loans from conventional banks and building societies.

He said: “We still get entrepreneurs coming to use, but there been a definite shift towards supporting businesses with their cash flow rather than helping start-ups.

“We’re seeing a great need for trying to help more established businesses, and that’s partly because people have been more aware of our existence.

“But we’ve particularly found the banks haven’t improved their ability to service the requirements of existing clients.

“I don’t know that the tap has been turned on.”

CEDC approved 45 loans that were unable to get conventional funding last year, ranging from £2,000 to £50,000 at a time.

The firm’s loan arm was launched just over two years ago with £1m of LEGI funding ring fenced for the fund.

Although the team is part of Croydon Enterprise, it comes under the umbrella of CEDC and was recruited through the GLE oneLondon business support group.

Mr Miller said: “Businesses work on peaks and troughs, and everyone needs a little help now and again.

“We’ve supported one business who secured a contract to refurbish parts of a large tower block office complex, so that’s Croydon money into a Croydon business to refurbish a Croydon building.

“Without more conventional funding there’s increased demand for our support services.”

Anyone interested in getting in touch with CEDC’s loan fund team can pop in to their office in Amp House, Dingwall Road or call 020 8090 9184.