The Real Value Provided by Credit Insurance

New unsecured creditor figures illustrate the value of trade credit insurance.

New research by InfolinkGazette has indicated that the recent failures of Pretty Green Limited, Freemont Ltd, British Midland Regional Limited (t/a Flybmi), Better Bathrooms, Ubercasual Limited (t/a Jack & Jones), Blenheim Homes North East Limited, El Ganso (Acturus Retail (UK) Ltd), and Boing Zone Limited have left at least 866 unsecured creditors owed approximately £32.3 million.

In Pretty Green’s case, they were themselves an unsecured trade creditor of House of Fraser and lost £522,000 when the store entered administration last year. Greg Connell, Managing Director of InfolinkGazette, commented:

Credit insurance cover isn’t always available, but when it is obtainable, can avert the disastrous consequences of becoming an unsecured creditor.

You can read InfolinkGazette’s analysis here.

An interesting perspective recently shared by Greg Connell, Managing Director of InfolinkGazette of what the real value of Credit Insurance can provide. With insolvency numbers and claims now mirroring those last seen in 2009 and all the Political uncertainty abounding with hard Brexit looking evermore likely, we believe things are going to become more difficult before they get better.

TL Dallas is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or default exposures and if you would like to talk about specific needs, export related or otherwise, we would welcome the opportunity to talk to you further. Please email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

Kier Group KIE Share Price lowest since the 1990’s

December 2018 signified a share price of 409p and yet June 2019 evidenced a crash all the way down to 161p. Is it a case of ‘Kitchen Sinking’? With a new Chief at the helm, Andrew Davies has signified the company’s falling profits, rising debt and higher costs in one swift move. Perhaps he is being more pragmatic in his findings since undertaking the role in March this year, coming in and seeing things in a harsher, realistic light. However, it’s not uncommon for a new boss to portray a dark picture soon after arriving, to then depict themselves as saviours to investors on the precarious path ahead.

Step back to December 2018 and the rights issue offered to investor’s on the understanding that by June 2019 the cash position would be c.£25m. In actual fact, there is a strong claim that the £265m cash raised must have been based on fundamentally wrong financial forecasts as instead there is now a net debt position of c.£56m to be expected.

Of note, there was an anticipated £250m increase in turnover for 2019 from the £4.5bn sales in 2018, yet uncontrollable issues outside of management’s control such as, a slowdown in construction, budget constraints on schools and hospitals have caused turnover to remain stagnant. This culminates with the issues relating to the restructuring costs increasing by £15m, yet there has been discussions this relates to an acceleration of the programme, albeit unavoidable one off costs.

FT advisor Mathew Vincent states, ‘It smells horribly like Carillion’. It cannot be ignored, that certain similarities are evidenced. However, the spread of risk is far less concentrated, whilst the business still remains profitable and there does seem to be a clear strategy being put in place by the new Chief to help cement the company’s market position. Carillion was profitable until the goodwill was omitted from the balance sheet. Moving aside from the accounting gimmickry, Kier has almost £800m goodwill on it’s balance sheet.

Trust with investors has been tarnished and will need to be rebuilt. It is almost unthinkable for the CEO to request a fresh rights issue given the current predicament coupled with the endless paroxysms encountered in the sector currently.

The strategy update in July will be Pivotal to hopefully rebuilding Trust with the market/shareholder’s whilst perhaps focusing more heavily on margin than turnover. Key future requirements of improving cash generation and reducing leverage should not be ignored.

 

TL Dallas is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or default exposures. If you would like to talk about specific needs, we would welcome the opportunity to talk to you further. Please email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

 

No Deal No British Steel

No Deal No British Steel – What does Comet, Monarch Airlines and British Steel have in common..?

  • All acquired and owned by Greybull Capital
  • All went into administration to the detriment of the taxpayer

Greybull offered a mere £1m to save the company whilst requesting £75m from the Government which was subsequently reduced to £30m. There’s a culmination of problems facing the steel industry at the moment, with the value of sterling, coupled with European/US Trade Tariff’s causing uncertainty.

A Sector Deal along with taking steps on energy prices could have been reviewed. Redcar Steelworks was closed with the loss of 3100 jobs – the Government’s final statement on this being ‘Never again’.

In a positive swing, we wake up this morning to hear that 60 potential buyers have came forward, whilst a treasury backed indemnity has been put in place by the Government to keep the business afloat ensuring all staff will continue to be paid. Combined with Network Rail increasing their orders to help keep it trading, there may yet be light at the end of the tunnel, helping to save a potential 25,000 jobs throughout the supply chain.

 

TL Dallas is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or default exposures. If you would like to talk about specific needs, we would welcome the opportunity to talk to you further. Please email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

Takeover bids reported as Interserve bought out of administration

Takeover bids reported as Interserve bought out of administration – read the full article in Scottish Construction Now.

 

Subcontractors were being advised it was business as usual. This latest news, if true, paints a bigger picture. Where will this all end and how quickly will stability and certainty return. It must be a very difficult period for all concerned. My hope is that this and Brexit negotiations will conclude with a successful and positive outcome.

 

TL Dallas is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or default exposures and if you would like to talk about specific needs, export related or otherwise, we would welcome the opportunity to talk to you further. Please email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

 

Utilitywise Goes Into Administration

Energy broker Utilitywise has gone into administration, putting 1,000 jobs at risk.

The impact of uncertainty with Brexit and price capping is clearly having effects. This is not good news for the employees of this business nor the North West. You can read the full article here.

TL Dallas is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or default exposures and if you would like to talk about specific needs, export related or otherwise, we would welcome the opportunity to talk to you further. Please email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

 

The Importance of Credit Risk Protection

 
This article recently published in Construction Enquirer highlights the impact that bad debts and insolvencies can have on suppliers.
 
Building services specialist, Proline Group, reported to be owed vast sums, have placed the business into administration – highlighting the need for credit risk protection.
 
Cash flow management is essential to keep businesses going. Late payments from your customers can impact your own ability to pay debts as they fall due.
 
In these ever uncertain times TL Dallas & Co can offer various solutions for credit risk protection. If you are interested in a no obligation review please get in touch to discuss your specific business needs. You can email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

Trade credit insurers pay out a record £1 million a day to help UK firms stay afloat

Whatever you hear about Credit Insurance underwriters reducing risk exposure, the reality is that exposure has increased significantly over the last decade and the other side of this can be seen in the claims now being paid. An interesting article as this represents the collective experience which is the reality of what all in the industry are experiencing right now. Not a time for the feint hearted!

 

TL Dallas is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or protracted default exposures. If you would like to discuss your specific business needs we would welcome the opportunity to see if we can help provide more certainty in these uncertain times. Please email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

 

Interserve shares dive on rising concerns over future

More rather bleak news on the BBC yesterday, lets hope that some more positive outcomes result from the ongoing Brexit negotiations that will bring some sensibility and clarity that is so very important, at this point in time.

Read the article here.

 

TL Dallas is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or protracted default exposures. If you would like to discuss your specific business needs we would welcome the opportunity to see if we can help provide more certainty in these uncertain times. Please email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

Staff Spotlight – Jonathan Smith Strategic Director – Trade Credit & Surety

1. What does your role entail?

In essence, as a relatively new member of the team, my role is one which means review is required first. Going forward, I’ll be concentrating on how the Credit function is strengthened as this area of the business continues to grow. Finally, my focus will be expanding our presence geographically to ensure we continue building on the strong foundations set by others within the team.

 

2. What part of your role do you find most rewarding?

Problem solving and finding solutions! I really do get a buzz out of the fact, that in this industry no day is the same and we really do get involved in such a variety of businesses with their own unique needs. We also meet some very dedicated and passionate people, who in themselves are inspirational.

 

3. Most challenging part of your role?

Knowing when to stop, sometimes! Perhaps my new role as a grandparent will help with this one!

 

4. Outside of work, what motivates you, or what do you enjoy doing?

Outside of work my interests include the garden, league squash, golf and recently my wife and I have really enjoyed attending some six nations games at Twickers and the Principality. Travel plans are back on the agenda as the kids both got married in 2016 and flew the nest or should I say we thought they were, until they both with their respective other halves announced the family is expanding with new arrivals due soon.

 

5. Is there any one person that inspires you, and why?

No one specific comes to mind but those such as Winston Churchill have left an impression. He wasn’t always popular but he knew his own mind and followed through on his convictions.

 

Contact Jonathan Smith on 07983 325766 or email jonathan.smith@tldallas.com

 

Revealed: Record Trade Credit Insurance Payout in UK

Insurance Business UK magazine reports on record trade credit insurance payout in the UK. Read the full article here.
 
Yet another bleak reflection of the reality of the claims being handled this year by all underwriters.
 
The expectation, without wanting to be too negative is, unfortunately it will get worse before it gets better.
 
 
TL Dallas is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or protracted default exposures. If you would like to discuss your specific business needs we would welcome the opportunity to see if we can help provide more certainty in these uncertain times. Please email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

8 months on from the collapse of Carillion how is the UK construction industry faring?

One in four companies have been hit by the Domino effect in the last six months according to r3.org.uk, as noted in an article in September’s addition of the CICM magazine. This, along with HCC’s Alice Bremner’s article, make for interesting reading.

The paper provides an insight into the current position of the construction industry nine months after the collapse of Carillion – and  reveals the increase of insolvencies and challenges facing the construction industry in the uncertain times ahead and ‘unanswered Brexit question’.

Read Alice Bremner’s article here.

 

TL Dallas is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or protracted default exposures. If you would like to discuss your specific business needs we would welcome the opportunity to see if we can help provide more certainty in these uncertain times. Please email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

UK Economy faltering according to Credit Managers

The CMI index from Chartered Institute of Credit Management suggests a downward trend for credit managers based on the latest data provided.

Read the article here.

 

TL Dallas is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or protracted default exposures. If you would like to discuss your specific business needs we would welcome the opportunity to see if we can help provide more certainty in these uncertain times. Please email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

Construction bosses who phoenix firms to face fines or bans

Sarah Aldridge, Credit Broking Director for TL Dallas comments on Construction Enquirer’s recent article – ‘Construction bosses who phoenix firms to face fines or bans’

 

‘The attached article suggests that changes to insolvency rules will be coming through shortly to prevent both phoenix companies rising from the ashes and avoiding paying creditors, as well as providing more protection for rehabilitating the debtor. 

These changes will take UK insolvency laws closer towards the USA rules. These changes are, in my opinion, long overdue.  There could be interesting times ahead… watch this space.’

Read the full article here.

 

TL Dallas is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or protracted default exposures. If you would like to discuss your specific business needs we would welcome the opportunity to see if we can help provide more certainty in these uncertain times. Please email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

TL DALLAS VACANCY – Credit Insurance Account Handler

 

An opportunity has arisen to join the Credit team as an Account Handler, based in either our Falkirk or Glasgow office. Please see details below and get in touch if you would like to be considered for the role.

The ideal candidate will have Trade Credit experience. However, those with banking, credit management, insurance or other related professions, will also be considered.  As will business related degree level applicants.

 

The Role

The role will involve, providing support to Directors/Account Executives in the team, ensuring we maintain high service levels as well as meeting, and exceeding, our clients needs and expectations.

 

Main Responsibilities

  • Working with Directors/Account Executives on all aspects associated with client retention, growth and maintenance of valued relationships
  • With guidance, interface with clients and underwriters and be able to provide support and understanding of all day to day aspects of policy management
  • Negotiating with insurers the credit limit requirements of clients and prospects
  • Information gathering, analysis and preparation of proposal, renewal or new business reports
  • Assist with overdue reporting processes and/or claims notifications to underwriters
  • Work with Directors/Account Executives on effective control of revenue and other data management systems used
  • Adhere fully to TL Dallas business processes, systems and procedures
  • Ensure complete adherence with other training and compliance requirements specified by management or the company

 

Candidates Skills & Competencies

  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced environment, both autonomously as well as within an established team
  • Needs to be highly organised and be able to monitor and manage multiple tasks, with a proven ability to work in a demanding environment
  • Must be a flexible team player and skilled in developing and maintaining relationships at all levels
  • Can listen and acquire new skills, always ready to learn
  • Able to evidence sound commercial and financial awareness
  • Demonstrate a clear understanding of regulatory issues within an insurance or a financial services organisation
  • Excellent customer service skills and has an eye for detail and accurate data entry
  • Proficient in the use of Microsoft Office and knowledge and competence with Acturis would be a benefit

 

A competitive salary, depending on experience, plus other flexible company benefits will be offered to the successful candidate.

If you think you are the perfect candidate for this role, please submit your CV to Credit@tldallas.com, detailing why you suit this role.

We look forward to hearing from you.

 

Closing date for applications: 14th October 2018

 
Agencies need not apply.

 

TL Dallas is one of the UK’s leading independent Insurance Broking and Risk Management companies with offices throughout the UK.  We have a long and distinguished heritage and have been providing insurance services and solutions since 1919. We believe it is the relationships we have with our clients that allow us to fully understand their insurance requirements and our pursuit of continued service excellence is at the heart of all we do. Our people are key to our success and our values; Trust, Collaboration, Integrity and Commitment are ingrained into the TL Dallas culture and we pride ourselves on providing the very best advice and service to our clients.

For more information on the company visit tldallas.com

 

Avoiding Trade Credit Fraud

It can be difficult to identify a potential fraud but there are some warning signs to look out for that can assist in avoiding and certainly reducing the negative impact this can have on a business. 

Losses due to fraud are not generally covered by Credit Insurance policies meaning your Insurer is not liable for this loss. However, there are some exceptional cases where we know underwriters have accepted liability, so having a policy may have added benefits!

The TL Dallas Group of companies and the insurers we place cover with are seeing significant increases in the number of fraud overdues or claims being reported by clients. In particular, ‘assumed identity’ fraud cases – this is when a third party assumes the identity of well-established creditworthy businesses. 

CEO fraud is the impersonation of a company’s CEO or high-ranking officer to try and trick an employee into transferring money.  Unfortunately, as it is subsequently discovered, these payments have gone to the fraudsters account.  

 

Currently, the main sectors affected are Food & Drink, IT and Construction. However, all sectors are being targeted.

Whilst we are concentrating in this article on trade credit insurance and fraud we do have other solutions for Cyber Liability and Financial Crime risks – these policies can cover some of the areas highlighted and in addition cyber attacks on your IT systems and the liability that may arise if you inadvertently pass on viruses, ransomware and the like to third parties.

Please contact Mike Martin or Matt Smith on 01274 465500 or email mike.martin@tldallas.com or matt.smith@tldallas.com. There are also a number of articles on our website that may be of interest and you can access them here.

 

Some points to be wary of include: –

FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

  • Confirm the issued share capital stated in the Company’s accounts are consistent with the annual returns 
  • Be wary of a Company that submits accounts shortly after its financial year end or a dormant company suddenly becoming active 
  • Be wary of Companies filing above and beyond its filing requirements. Remember a ‘small company’ is required to submit abbreviated accounts to Companies House and ‘micro-entities’ are required to submit simpler accounts that meet minimum statutory requirements 
  • Compare accounts to other Companies within the same industry and be wary of Companies that have filed accounts which appear ‘too good to be true’. lf the accounts are audited, check if they’re registered using http://auditregister.org.uk/Forms/Default.aspx
  • Conflicting trade sectors – eg. Companies House states ‘wholesale of food + beverages’, but their website/status report states manufacture of metal 
  • Check the Directors do not have any association to failed companies or high volume of newly incorporated companies as this can be a warning sign
  • Frequent or sudden change/s in shareholders/directors or registered office can also be a warning sign 

NEW CUSTOMERS 

  • An unsolicited enquiry with a short/urgent delivery deadline – the potential new customer will be persistent and put you under pressure to open an account. There will be an unusually short period between first contact, order and delivery date. 
  • No landline telephone number provided – only a mobile number. Calls are usually not answered but go to voicemail and then your call is returned. If a landline is provided, when you call it’s been disconnected or just rings out.
  • Mirror imaging of existing genuine email and website addresses.  They are usually very similar to the company they are impersonating, however there will be subtle differences, i.e.:

Genuine company website address – www.tldallas.com 

Fraudulent company – www.t-l-dallas.com 

  • Professional looking website but with little functionality. The website will look OK, but basic and light on any details, landline telephone number etc. 
  • Be cautious with trade references and check them thoroughly – some recent cases we have seen have highlighted the trade references given were fraudulent and that associates, were also involved in the fraud.
  • The buyer is generally not interested in price with little or no negotiation – why would they be if they are not going to pay you! 
  • Buyer requests to collect goods themselves from your premises/warehouse, often in a private car or unmarked vehicle
  • Being asked to deliver goods to a different company or an unknown third party
  • Buyer changing delivery address at short notice – use Google Maps or Royal Mail postcode and address finder to verify addresses
  • Potential customer is overly ready to supply information – trade references and accounts/managements accounts are available without being asked 
  • Confirm that the supplied VAT and Bank Details are genuine 

EXISTING CUSTOMERS

Be wary of last minute requests, from your existing customers, if they do not follow their usual established trading pattern – check the details out further and call your usual contact and confirm changes in writing. 

 

Avoiding Trade Credit Fraud – download the pdf here.

 

Further useful information can be found here

 

If you would like to discuss Credit Insurance, please call 01274 465 522 or 01324 717 466. Alternatively, email your details to Credit@tldallas.com and a member of the team will be in touch.

Tough trading times leads to the highest number of UK trade credit insurance claims since 2009

“We pointed out some of the likely outcomes we envisaged were to follow in the article we produced some six months ago, shortly after the failure of Carillion.

The latest statement from the ABI (see below) highlights to some degree the extent of the current challenges being faced and we believe there is still more to come.

Questions about Brexit still remain to be fully answered and with names like Debenhams hitting the press over the weekend the challenges for business getting the cover they need at an affordable price will become more difficult if the current trend continues.

 

Reported this week in Credit Insurance News

Tough trading times leads to the highest number of UK trade credit insurance claims since 2009. 

New figures from the Association of British Insurers (ABI) show that in the first quarter of 2018, the number of new UK trade credit insurance claims notified (at 3,966) was up by 50% on the previous quarter. This equated to 44 new claims every day during the quarter – the highest quarterly figure since Q3 2009. In addition, the value of UK domestic claims paid – £54 million – was a record amount for the first quarter of a year. Mark Shepherd, ABI’s Assistant Director and Head of Property, Commercial and Specialist Lines, commented: “The collapse of Carillion was one of a number of high-profile major insolvencies, which dramatically highlighted how the ripple effect of a company failure can have a devastating impact throughout the supply chain . . . Never has the importance of trade credit insurance been greater – the survival of any business could be at risk without it.” 

 

The full news article from the ABI’s can be read here.

 

TL Dallas is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or protracted default exposures. If you would like to discuss your specific business needs we would welcome the opportunity to see if we can help provide more certainty in these uncertain times. Please email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

 
Note: The ABI UK Trade Credit Data Report compiles data from nine trade credit insurers: AIG, Atradius, Coface, Euler Hermes, Markel International, QBE, Tokio Marine HCC, XL and Zurich.

UK Exports up 4.1%

Recent statistics released by HMRC show an increase of 4.1% in the number of UK businesses exporting goods. Growth in exports came from regions across the UK with the East Midlands reporting a rise by 15.2% followed by Scotland at 12.1%.  A recent article by Milo Bogaerts, Euler Hermes CEO and the related content, points toward the help that is available to exporters or would-be exporters. This includes details of free seminars in the Midlands.

Read the full article here.

 

TL Dallas & Co Ltd is a leading provider of insurance solutions to protect against insolvency or default exposures and if you would like to discuss specific insurance needs, export related or otherwise, we would welcome the opportunity to talk to you further.

You can email our Credit Insurance team on credit@tldallas.com.

 

Sarah Aldridge Elected by CICM to Represent Credit Services on Advisory Council

Congratulations to Sarah Aldridge, Credit Broking Director at TL Dallas, who was recently elected by the Chartered Institute of Credit Management (CICM) to represent credit services on the advisory council over the next two years.

The Chartered Institute of Credit Management (CICM) is the largest recognised professional body in the world for the credit management community.  Formed over 75 years ago the CICM offers a comprehensive range of services and bespoke solutions for the credit profession as well as services and advice for the wider business community.

Sarah promotes positive credit management on a daily basis, whether this is working and advising credit managers or as a tutor and encouraging personal growth of the future generation of credit managers.

An enthusiastic supporter of mentoring, Sarah was a finalist in 2018 Women in Credit Awards – Mentor of the Year.

Sarah’s key attributes – honesty, integrity, passion and enthusiasm – resonate rather nicely with a number of the values which lie at the heart of TL Dallas, making her the perfect ambassador to drive initiatives and policies within the world of Credit Management forward in this ever changing economic environment benefiting clients and colleagues alike.

 

Services back on track as overall credit picture remains mixed

The latest press release from the Chartered Institute of Credit Management (CICM) reports improvements in the service sector but otherwise there were some mixed messages which suggest a cautious approach is maintained, for more details please see the full article here.

Latest ABI figures for credit insurance claims also reported claims up by 52% for Q1 when compared with Q4 2017, and increases to both the mean average and gross debt levels were noted in the same period.

 

To find out more, or to discuss your company’s credit insurance needs, please contact sarah.aldridge@tldallas.com.

The State of the High Street!

Jonathan Smith – Strategic Director – Trade Credit & Surety for TL Dallas – comments on Centre For Retail’s recent article on ‘Whose gone bust in retailing 2010 – 2018?’  

“A walk down memory lane to see what’s happened to our high street in the last ten years!

It’s shocking looking back but the move to online shopping, seems only to be accelerating the need to adapt or become nothing more than another statistic. Sales at UK’s biggest online retailers jump 23% in a year according to RPC’s recent news release.

My memory is about the names which we covered for policy holders and the claims we secured settlements on.”

Read the article here.

For further information and advice on how Credit Insurance could benefit your business, email Jonathan Smith – Jonathan.Smith@tldallas.com – or call 07983 325766.