The Light Bulb Moment
Many amazing businesses have been created with the help of drinks and friends. Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook, found his entrepreneurial spirit after a few drinks.
Both UBER and Tinder began with a chat over drinks, as did our new business, Tower Street Finance.
I was enjoying a cold beer with Martin Holdsworth, founder of IDR Law, a specialist law practice in the probate sector, when we had our “light bulb” moment. He told me a story about a lady who had just lost her partner of over 30 years. With no income, all assets tied up in a complex and time-consuming probate process and stepsons who were trying to remove her from her home, she found herself in a very distressing situation.
She wanted to raise capital to pay off the stepsons, move to a new home and start afresh. With no lending product on the market to fulfil her needs, we came up with the idea of creating a new product that would allow beneficiaries of estates to get their inheritance earlier.
We conducted market research for over 18 months to establish if there was a true need for this unique product. The conclusion was a resounding yes!
People are reliant on their inheritance for a multitude of reasons: paying off debt, increasing disposable income, helping children get on the housing ladder, paying education fees – the list goes on and on.
Our product, Inheritance Advance, is shaped to meet customer needs, and is simple: TSF will advance the majority of the expected inheritance and, when the estate becomes liquid, we are repaid, and the remaining balance is passed to the beneficiary. The product is unique in that it does not matter if the beneficiary has adverse credit – creditworthiness is irrelevant: the estate repays the advance. There are no repayments to be made by the individual and there is no need to place a charge on their house.
Inheritance Advance benefits probate administrators too: they can offer a wider service to their clients, and enquiry calls from beneficiaries asking when they will receive their money are reduced. TSF also pay an introductory fee.
A year and a half on from our “light bulb” moment, we are ready to serve beneficiaries and probate administrators alike. We have approval from the FCA, funding in place, systems developed, and an expert team with vast financial services experience, to deliver Inheritance Advance as a world class service.
Now looking forward to the next cold beer!!!
Andrew Bartle is Founder and Managing Director of Tower Street Finance. He has worked in the financial services industry for 26 years.