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Did you help a 96 year old chocolate factory in Preston expand?

Funding Stories

Did you help a 96 year old chocolate factory in Preston expand?

Updated: 24 September 2020

Easter is fast-approaching and we can’t wait to munch through copious amounts of chocolate (and it’ll be almost guilt free if we’re supporting UK businesses at the same time!).

In preparation for the four day weekend, we visited Beech’s Fine Chocolates who’ve been manufacturing high quality gourmet chocolates from their base in Lancashire since 1920. The chocolates they produce, including  brazil nuts, bars and creams, are sold in a range of high street stores, including Waitrose, John Lewis, Harrods, Booths, and Mr Simms.

The business recently took part in a BBC documentary called ‘Who’s the Boss?, and business owner Andrew Whiting told us he’s been overwhelmed by positive comments from viewers about the passion and culture of his team. A number of the Beech’s staff have worked at the factory for decades, like Barbara, pictured below, who’s coming up to 50 years!

Barbara employee at Beechs

Geraldine and John Aughton, who’ve been lending to businesses through Funding Circle for the past few years, met the Beech’s team while taking a tour round the factory. Geraldine, who lent to Beech’s, said she’s particularly attracted to companies who are from the North West because that’s where she lives.

In January 2016, Beech’s Fine Chocolates took out a £250,000 loan through the Funding Circle marketplace to keep up with high demand. In this short video you’ll hear from business owner Andrew, meet investor Geraldine and get a sneak peek inside the factory:

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