A funding journey as reliable as the service we offer

A funding journey as reliable as the service we offer

A dependable courier service needs a dependable funding partner and that is just what Darryl Claypole owner of City Couriers Direct Ltd has found with its funder, eCapital Commercial Finance.

​Based in Chesterfield, the business is now a leading courier service provider that prides itself on a trustworthy and rapid service that keeps everything flowing between A and B. Having a consistent and reliable source of funding has been key to its rapid growth since the current business was established almost two years ago.

​As Darryl explains “Having worked in the courier industry for over 16 years, our expertise and sector knowledge together with an extensive contact base had got us to a stage where we wanted to take the business to a different level.”

​Formed in April 2020, with the pandemic taking hold and having to operate from home, an enviable tie up with Hermes to provide same and next day deliveries across the whole of the UK presented this new business an opportunity too good to pass up. However, by May of the following year, with turnover increasing dramatically and payment terms being stretched, the business which was already heavily capitalised was in real danger of overtrading.

​Reflecting on this Darryl concedes, “We have gone from a starting point of 22 collections per week from Hermes to now over 2000 which is massive growth for us but looking back to May 2021 we were really up against it as the business was growing far too fast!”

​A timely call from Dominique Upton from eCapital’s business development team was proceeded the very next day by a visit from Relationship Manager Scott Swinden, who having had previous invoice finance experience in dealing with Hermes was able to provide Darryl with the suitable assurances and guidance sufficient for a deal to be concluded ; a deal that has provided a flexible and highly workable funding solution for City Couriers Direct. This was despite several interested offers from other would-be suitors at the time.

As Darryl continues; “As a business we are built on traditional, family type values and Hermes is a massive customer to us. Our ability to service them and to deliver on what we say we will do and when we will do it, is fundamental to our working relationship and a matter of real pride and reputation.

The strategic review that we provide them each year with eCapital’s input includes our detailed cashflow projections and our ability (financially) to service them. eCapital are more than just a funder. If we have a board meeting, then Scott will attend, if we need to speak with our advisors then he will offer to be part of any conversation, be it as a colleague or financial partner. eCapital have been absolute in their support for my business.”

Since its early days in the spring of 2020, City Couriers Direct has grown successfully to reach a turnover of £3.4m during 2021 and is now forecasting further growth to between £5-8m over the next 18-24 months. It has now established itself as one of the leading courier companies specialising in SME collections throughout the UK.

Darren Cottenden, director of eCapital comments, “The last two years has challenged businesses the length and breadth of the country and it has been vital for funders to continue to nurture and support the intrinsic funding requirements of SMEs throughout all the pain and pleasure that they have endured. It has been fantastic to be part of the growth of City Couriers Direct and by building a strong, personal, and long-standing partnership with Darryl and his team, we look forward to further successes for this business throughout 2022.