Challenger Paragon Bank has provided a £125,000 Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan (CBILS) to Reading-based Southern Tower Services Ltd.

Southern Tower provides building and repair services, including scaffold towers, to businesses across the South of England.

With the building industry severely impacted during the peak of coronavirus, Southern Tower experienced a significant drop in turnover.

With such a sudden decrease in customer demand, the loan package from Paragon enabled the business to continue meeting obligations to both suppliers and HMRC until orders started returning.

Paragon Bank

Paragon has been supporting Southern Tower since 2016 with invoice finance and during the winter periods, this support has been extended to ensure that the business’ cash flow enables it to get through the lower turnover months.

Pete Harley, qwner at Southern Tower, said: “We have been working with Paragon for nearly four years and find them very professional and knowledgeable.

“They are always ready to listen. We have an excellent working relationship with the team and they have really helped our business thrive.”

To date, Paragon has lent over £20m to UK SMEs through CBILS, with several deals in the pipeline due to complete.

Adrian Taylor, head of invoice finance at Paragon, said: “We are extremely glad that we can support our customers through challenges presented by the pandemic.

“Our strong relationship with Southern Tower has meant that we have been able to provide ongoing support, tailored to their needs, both prior to the coronavirus pandemic and during.”

Development finance team

In another development, Paragon Bank’s development finance team has seen further growth, with the appointment of Rebecca Murphy as relationship director.

Murphy will be based in the Gracechurch Street head office in London and will work with clients across England.

She joins from LendInvest, where she spent five years working across both investor relations and then portfolio and relationship management within the development finance team.

Prior to that, Murphy was with Goldman Sachs for two years, working in prime brokerage sales.