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Recovery Loan Scheme (RLS)

The Recovery Loan Scheme (RLS) supports access to finance for UK businesses as they recover and grow following the Covid-19 pandemic.

The RLS aims to help businesses affected by Covid-19 and can be used for business purposes, including, managing cashflow, investment and growth. It is designed to support businesses that can afford to take out additional finance for these purposes.

Flexible finance from a relationship lender

Are you looking for debt finance to help your business reach its full potential? Then you are in the right place.

Funds we manage

NPIF – Mercia Debt Finance

Business loans from £100,000 - £750,000

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Mercia SME loans

Loans between £100,000 and £1.0million for established and growing UK SMEs.

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Pete Sorsby, Investment Director, Debt Finance

You’ve come to the right place

Debt finance is one of the most common forms of finance with high street banks having led the charge for decades. In recent years, more specialist lenders such as Mercia has supported SMEs in ways that traditional banks are unable to, providing a different appetite to risk which suits growing regional businesses.

The right money, at the right time, on the right terms

Mercia has a pool of funding options to suit your needs, we call it our complete connected capital. Whether you’re starting out and need a cash injection of £100,000, or you’re running an established business looking to scale with a £1,000,000 we have different funding solutions to meet your needs.

Mercia’s debt funds can invest from both the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund and its SME Loans Fund.

Our debt solutions are available for a wide range of purposes:

Additional working capital Supporting growth ambitions New markets, products and services Business acquisitions
Growth capital Premises purchase, improvements/expansion New stock, plant and machinery Employment of new staff
Rachel Abbott, CEO, Cobra Sport

Cobra Sport

Performance exhaust manufacturers

Cobra Sport Performance Exhausts produces stainless steel sports exhausts and is setting new standards in quality and performance through innovative design and advanced manufacturing techniques

Powering regional ambitions

The business has grown rapidly since its first investment from Mercia in 2018, expanding its manufacturing capabilities and entering new markets.

Rachel Abbott, CEO said – “Mercia is a proactive investor; they are keen to see how we are progressing and genuinely interested in the business which is refreshing.”

Alissia Deane, Mercia, Seb Francis & Mike Bennett,Titus learning, David Wright, Investment Manager, Mercia

A commitment to growth

Mercia invests debt finance into ambitious small companies. The portfolio’s characteristics are broad crossing a range of business activities from the complex, embracing cutting edge technology, through to more traditional service businesses. The one thing which all the debt portfolio companies have in common is that they are all led by robust management teams committed to growing their businesses.

Debt versus equity?

It’s a common source of debate amongst business owners; do you take on debt or do you ‘give away’ some equity. The answer will often lie in your business circumstances.

Mercia has been providing both debt and equity to businesses for decades and our team has put together a summary so you can determine what’s best for your business.

If you are seeking finance but uncertain whether a loan is the right type of finance for you, then you might want to look at Mercia’s venture capital or private equity solutions to see if they are more relevant to your circumstances.

Tell us what you need

Is your business better suited for a business loan?

  • Ownership is not diluted so your upside remains all yours
  • Future payments are based on regular repayments which can be planned and prepared for
  • You can already demonstrate good trading history or a strong sales pipeline
  • You have an immediate cash flow requirement

Is your business better suited for equity finance?

  • For businesses that can demonstrate rich IP
  • When you need larger amounts of money
  • When you need both cash and additional expertise

Our free guide to loan applications

Chris Pestell, Investment Director of Mercia SME Loans explains how to avoid the most common mistakes that companies make when applying for a business loan, plus the things that you can do to help your application. Download our free guide now.


What you can expect from Mercia

Mercia knows the regions and the small business community well. We’re based across eight regional offices so we’re always close to the businesses that we back. With our teams combined experience and local knowledge there are very few situations that we haven’t advised on already – we have lots of value to add when it comes to helping your business grow.
We’ll make sure that the application process is streamlined, finding the best finance options to suit both your credit rating and business circumstances.

Unlike many lenders we won’t always ask for security we simply want to see great business plans and business owners that have a passion, and the skills, for growing their business. We’re a responsive lender and our personal relationships with the businesses we lend money to are important, so we always aim to exceed expectations.

Like most lenders of debt finance, we’ll ask for a monthly set of reports, but these will be standard items which you’re likely to be producing inhouse so nothing we ever ask for should be onerous.

As a client of Mercia, you will have access to your own local portfolio manager who you can seek guidance from at any time. Whether you want help with new business development, or input with management information, we’re happy to help and provide a second set of eyes.
We also recognise that your funding needs may change over time and our flexible approach means that you can apply for more money whenever your circumstances change.

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