Credit Management issue April 2021


The CICM magazine for consumer and commercial credit professionals



APRIL 2021 £12.50




Winners of the

CICM British Credit

Awards 2021

SEE PAGES: 34-40



The gloom of

winter is over

Individual Voluntary

Arrangements are broken

but can be repaired. Page 20

A new service is helping

businesses conduct international

trade. Page 28



Adam Bernstein






Kevin Reed

APRIL 2021



The relief as we head towards a more

normal world is palpable


Why tighter regulation in the buy now,

pay later space is a good thing


Neil Jinks looks at the issues over CCJ

enforcement and impact on cashflow


David Andrews gives his View from the



Peter Wallwork argues that IVAs may be

broken but can be repaired


With the uncertainties of Brexit,

Singapore seems a good place to do



COVID-19 is promoting a drive to

electronic validation



David Andrews


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Aneesh Varma

President Stephen Baister FCICM / Chief Executive Sue Chapple FCICM

Executive Board: Chair Debbie Nolan FCICM(Grad) – Vice Chair Phil Rice FCICM /Treasurer Glen Bullivant FCICM

Larry Coltman FCICM / Victoria Herd FCICM(Grad) / Philip Holbrough MCICM

Advisory Council: Sarah Aldridge FCICM / Laurie Beagle FCICM / Glen Bullivant FCICM / Alan Church FCICM(Grad)

Brendan Clarkson FCICM / Larry Coltman FCICM / Niall Cooter FCICM / Peter Gent FCICM(Grad) / Victoria Herd FCICM(Grad)

Philip Holbrough MCICM / Neil Jinks FCICM / Nick King FCICM / Charles Mayhew FCICM / Debbie Nolan FCICM(Grad)

Bryony Pettifor FCICM(Grad)/ Allan Poole MCICM / Alice Purdy MCICM(Grad) / Matthew Roberts MCICM / Phil Rice FCICM

Chris Sanders FCICM / Stephen Thomson FCICM / Atul Vadher FCICM(Grad)


A new service is helping businesses

conduct international trade


What should I look for in appointing an

external collections agency or lawyer?


Chartered Institute of Credit Management

The Water Mill, Station Road, South Luffenham


Telephone: 01780 722900




Managing Editor

Sean Feast FCICM

Deputy Editor

Iona Yadallee

Art Editor

Andrew Morris

Telephone: 01780 722910


Editorial Team

Laura Biondi, Imogen Hart, Rob Howard

and Max Tyson


Russell Bass

Telephone: 020 3603 7937



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ISSN 0265-2099

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 3


Four legs good,

two legs bad

Sean Feast FCICM

Managing Editor

SO the secret is finally out.

Liz Barclay, the former BBC

Broadcaster, has succeeded our

own Philip King FCICM as the

Small Business Commissioner.

Whereas Philip was appointed

on an interim basis following the surprise

departure of Paul Uppal, Liz Barclay will be

taking on the role permanently from July.

And good luck to her. She has a tough job

on her hands.

The SBC is not one person but rather

an independent public body set up by

Government under the Enterprise Act 2016

to tackle late payment and unfavourable

payment practices in the private sector.

Liz has no doubt been chosen because

of her credentials as an experienced

campaigner on behalf of consumers

and small companies, as a volunteer for

Citizens Advice, and as a former nonexecutive

director of the Financial Services

Compensation Scheme.

Her ‘previous’ as a BBC Broadcaster and

long-time presenter of Radio 4’s ‘You and

Yours’ was also, no doubt, a consideration.

The scale of the challenge, I expect, is

not lost on her. According to Government

figures, about £23.4 billion is owed in

outstanding invoices to British businesses,

with some businesses waiting several

months before paying their suppliers,

putting strain on cashflow. The Federation

of Small Businesses estimates that about

50,000 businesses close every year due

to late payments, and the pandemic will

doubtless lead to many thousands more.

Already Liz is saying the right things.

Interviewed for The Times on her

appointment, she talked about needing

a real culture change around business

payments: “People who have already

delivered goods and services have to be

able to turn their attention to their next

client and next order rather than chasing

up late payments and worrying about their

cashflow,” she says.

Of course, she is right. It’s something her

predecessor said during his tenure, and

during the 14 years that he was CEO at the

CICM. It’s what our own Chief Executive

has also been saying, and indeed the

importance of ‘managing cashflow’ has

been the mantra of the Institute for as long

as I can remember.

But these same small businesses need

to help themselves. ‘Cultural’ change is

not just about saying ‘here’s a big stick let’s

go beat up some big boys.’ It’s also about

changing the mind-set of small businesses

that there is plenty they could be doing at

their end to ensure they get paid on time.

Like invoicing promptly, for example, and

to the right company, with a PO if required,

and following up to make sure everything

is in order and there is no reason for an

invoice not to be paid, rather than just

sitting there and hoping for the best.

I hope Liz engages with organisations

like our own at the first opportunity, and

that we have an opportunity of sharing best

practice, as we have done with countless

Government ministers and departments

before her. I hope too that she doesn’t

get too distracted by the more vocal of

our campaigning groups who chant ‘Big

company bad, small company good’ in

similar fashion to the sheep’s constant

bleating in Animal Farm of ‘Four legs good,

two legs bad’.

Because we all know what happened on

the farm in the end.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 4


A round-up of news stories from the

world of consumer and commercial credit.

CIVEA supports CICM training

of new enforcement agents

CIVEA – the civil enforcement

association – has agreed

to promote the CICM Level

2 Taking Control of Goods

qualification to its 38 member

firms representing about 2,000

enforcement agents.

The CICM is one of three organisations

(the other two being IES Training and High

Court Enforcement Group) that CIVEA will

promote who offer regulated professional

enforcement qualifications.

From 1 March, CICM has waived the CICM

initial registration fee for enforcement

agents who work for CIVEA companies

and HCEOA members. The Institute will

include fees for the CICM online Level

2 Taking Control of Goods and Level 3

Advanced Enforcement courses in the CICM

membership package.

Russell Hamblin-Boone, CIVEA Chief

Executive, says the initiative comes at

an important time for the industry: “We

anticipate the total number of enforcement

agents to rise because of high demand from

Written by – Sean Feast FCICM

Sue Chapple FCICM CEO

“Through our


relationship with

the HCEOA we

have always been

closely associated

with driving up


standards in


the courts and local authorities to clear the

backlog of cases held up by the lockdowns,”

he explains. “Some larger firms are already

recruiting new field agents, and ensuring

they have the appropriate training and

support for responsible enforcement is

essential. Hence why we see our relationship

with the CICM as so important.”

Sue Chapple FCICM CEO says she is

delighted to be working more closely

with CIVEA: “Through our long-term

relationship with the HCEOA we have always

been closely associated with driving up

professional standards in enforcement,” she

says. “Having this endorsement from CIVEA,

and all that it is trying to achieve, is a signal

of the importance of enforcement as part of

the credit lifecycle, and the support we can

provide to individuals as CICM members to

keep their knowledge and skills up-to-date.”

Included with the CICM package is

ongoing CPD and mentoring support, giving

enforcement officers access to very highquality

training materials and coaching

where required.

SmartSearch makes FT list of fast-growing

European firms

“It is very much a

reflection of our

business performance

last year as 2020

was a record year for


LEADING anti-money-laundering (AML)

firm SmartSearch has made the latest

Financial Times’ annual list of the fastestgrowing

European companies for the third

year running.

The FT 1000 lists the European companies

that have achieved the highest compound

annual growth in revenue rate from 2016

to 2019. SmartSearch is ranked at 700, off

the back of an absolute growth rate of more

than 200 percent across the period.

According to the FT, Europe’s high-growth

companies are facing another year of slower

progress as the pandemic continues to limit

business activity in 2021. This is reflected

in the qualifying compound annual growth

rate for the list, which was 35.5 percent

this year, slightly lower than last year’s

38.4 percent. However, SmartSearch’s

achievement as a fintech firm is mirrored in

the wider list as technology firms dominate

the rankings with a total of 290.

James Dobson, Marketing Director

at SmartSearch says this is a fantastic

achievement for SmartSearch and its staff:

“It is very much a reflection of our business

performance last year as 2020 was a record

year for SmartSearch, driven in part by

the demand for our solution in light of the

Coronavirus outbreak, which of course

dominated everything.

“But in our sector particularly, the need

for protection against criminals taking

advantage of the gaps that opened up

in customer onboarding security and ID

verification, was acute.”

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 5

FOLLOWING on from his previous

article, French Exchange (page 43

of CM Jan/Feb 2021 edition), Pierre

Haincourt MCICM has advised of a

further important development.

On 11 February 2021, the French

Justice Minister (Le Garde des Sceaux

as Pierre likes to call him. Ed), indicated,

before the Laws Committee of the National

Assembly, that France would oppose the

UK's entry into the Lugano Convention. (A

transcript of the Minister’s speech will be

published on the Credit Limits International


Essentially, the French Justice Minister

openly stated that his position was aimed at

protecting the jurisdiction of the International

Chamber of the Commercial Court of Paris

– and this will certainly help it achieve

its objective of becoming the European

jurisdiction of choice for cross-border


“So, after 1,000 years of annoying the

French (that’s the title of a book by Stephen


French start a ‘war’

over jurisdictions

“So, after 1000

years of annoying

the French (that’s

the title of a

book by Stephen

Clarke), it looks

like the English

will finally be

punished for their

arrogance of these

past centuries as

France has just

started a war over


Clarke), it looks like the English will finally

be punished for their arrogance of these past

centuries as France has just started a war

over jurisdictions,” Pierre says.

“Whilst this new Court is already praising

itself for its extreme efficiency and low

cost, you have to wonder whether such

protectionist measures are really necessary,

or if the French may have something else to


Pierre thinks, however, that maybe this is

nothing more than a bit of post-Brexit Latin

posturing: “As you may have noticed before,

my compatriots are well-known for changing

their minds every time the wind changes

direction, so hopefully, posturing is all that

this is.

“Accession to the Lugano Convention

requires unanimous consent from all its

signatories and if France was to veto the

UK application, this status quo would have

disastrous consequences for all EU and

British exporters. Time for the EU to have a


WhatsApp? Plenty!

THE Money Advice Service (MAS) has

issued a warning about scam WhatsApp

messages purporting to be sent from

them. In these messages, it is claimed

that following a recent conversation

with a debt adviser, it is likely the

recipient’s application to have some of

their debt written off will be approved. In

order to process this, they ask for recent

bank statements, payslips, ID and any

letters from creditors.

The Money Advice Service request

that any scam messages using their

logo are reported to them via scams@

Fraud Injection

BRITONS continue to be targeted by

criminals seeking to exploit the Covid-19

vaccine by creating phishing websites

designed to appear as legitimate NHS

websites. Recipients are sent a message

asking them to accept an invitation to

receive their vaccination, which directs

them to a phishing website asking for

details such as name, address, mobile

number, mother’s maiden name and

bank details. The Covid-19 vaccination

is free of charge and the NHS has

confirmed they will never ask for bank or

card details to take payment or validate

a customer’s identity.

Dining out

THE consumer champion organisation

Which? has received reports of emails

claiming to be from Just Eat, the online

delivery service, offering a £50 gift card

for their service. The email address used

to send this scam has spoofed the

domain in an attempt to appear

legitimate. Which? is warning that those

who attempt to claim the voucher will

certainly be directed to a phishing website

which will attempt to steal information.

Just Eat has also confirmed they will

never send an email asking a customer

to follow a link and fill in their personal

details in order to receive a voucher.

Former CSA Chief Honoured with Fellowship

PETER Wallwork FCICM, former Chief

Executive of the Credit Services

Association (CSA), has been appointed

an Honorary Fellow of the Chartered

Institute of Credit Management


Sue Chapple FCICM, CICM CEO,

says that Peter’s contribution to

the credit industry deserved wider

recognition: “Honorary Fellowships

are awarded to those who have made

a significant contribution to our

industry and are in the gift of the CICM

Executive Board. We are delighted to

recognise Peter

as a true thought leader who has shown

the highest standards of excellence in

advancing our profession.”

Peter told Credit Management that

he was delighted to have been

elevated to FCICM: “One of the

tasks I had on my list of things

to do when I left the CSA

was to apply to the Institute

to become a Fellow. It was

something I had started to do

on more than one occasion

over the last few years,

but never quite managed to get the

time to complete. Imagine then my

surprise and delight when I received

a letter from Sue Chapple, offering

me an Honorary Fellowship, pretty

much exactly 20 years after I joined

the Institute in the first place. I wrote

back immediately to say, I'd be

delighted, yes please, and what an


The editorial team at Credit

Management would also like to

extened their congratulations on a

most deserved award.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 6


Appetite for homeworking has

increased since pandemic


one of the major and

lasting outcomes of the

COVID-19 pandemic,

a Cardiff University

academic predicts.

Professor Alan Felstead was

commissioned by the Senedd’s Economy,

Infrastructure and Skills Committee to

compile a report for their inquiry into

remote working.

His findings have fed into their

concluding report, which has come up

with a series of recommendations for

the Welsh Government as it develops its

remote working policy. Last year, it set a

long-term target that 30 percent of Welsh

workers would be working from home or

near to home in the future.

Professor Felstead’s most recent

analysis of data from the UK-wide

Understanding Society COVID-19 Study

shows the appetite for working at home

has increased over time. Nine out of ten

(88 percent) employees who worked at

home in June 2020 reported that they

would like to continue working at home in

some capacity. The same question asked

in September 2020 showed a rise to 93


Two-fifths (41 percent) of homeworkers

reported in June 2020 that they were able

to get as much work done as they had six

months earlier and more than quarter

(29 percent) said they got more done.

The September 2020 data suggests that

85 percent of employees who continued

to work at home were just as productive,

if not more, than they were before the

pandemic. The equivalent figure in June

2020 was 70 percent.

CSA ratifies appointment of two

non-executive directors at AGM

THE Credit Services Association, the trade

association for the debt collection industry,

has confirmed the appointment of two new

non-executive directors to its Board: James

Appleby from Arrow Global and Kathryn

Morgan of Lowell Financial.

Both new directors have extensive

experience in the financial services sector:

James is currently Managing Director

Northern Europe of Arrow Global Group and

has held senior positions within Barclays

Bank, Chetwood Bank, and Vanquis

Bank; Kathryn has held similar senior

executive roles with the NatWest Group and

Virgin Money and is presently Customer

Operations Director for Lowell Financial.

But the report also shows homeworkers

found it more difficult to reconcile home

and work life, were working longer

hours than they used to, and were more

frequently feeling drained and isolated.

Professor Alan Felstead, based at Cardiff

University's School of Social Sciences,

says Coronavirus will have a long-lasting

effect on the way we work: “Even when

social restrictions are fully lifted, it is

unlikely there will be a full return to

the traditional office setting. Instead,

the last twelve months has revealed a

strong appetite for homeworking among

employees and has proved to employers

that flexible working can bring business


“However, these changes are not going

to be straightforward. We will need to

rethink and reimage our notions of home

and work, the nature of our towns and

cities, and assess whether our transport

and telecommunications infrastructure is

fit for purpose.”

Tom Chandos, CSA Chair of the Board,

welcomed the new members and thanked

the former CSA Board directors for their

service: “In welcoming Kathryn and James

as new non-executive directors to the CSA,

I want to pay tribute to David Sheridan, Dr

David Hutchinson and Stewart Hamilton

for their time and service as they leave the

Association Board. As the trade body for

the collections and debt purchase sector

we are fortunate to have such a breadth

of representation to ensure that we can

promote excellence in standards and

culture across the industry, share best

practice and make our voice heard across

stakeholders and policy-makers.”



Saving Grace

THE Bank of England’s Money and

Credit report showed that £18.5bn was

put into savings accounts in January,

almost four times the average monthly

deposit figure before the pandemic.

Savings rates have remained at

historical lows. Some of this cash may

have been from £3.5bn of withdrawals

from National Savings and Investment

(NS&I) accounts in January, after NS&I

cut rates across its range of savings

accounts. NS&I deposits are not

counted as ‘household deposits’ in the

Money and Credit report but can be

an alternative home for consumers’

savings. As well as contributing to

savings, people also paid down debts

in January, with individuals making

net repayments of £2.4bn. Most of

this was repaid on credit cards, with

the balance repaid on other forms of

consumer credit.

Climbing the ladder

THE CICM Wessex Branch is looking

forward to welcoming delegates to

a late afternoon online event with

Debbie Nolan FCICM, the Chair of

the Executive Board of the CICM, in

association with Creative Huddle.

Brenda Linger FCICM, CICM Vice

President Branch Chair, says there

is very little Debbie has not seen

spanning thousands of customers and

situations: “Debbie has seen much

change over her 35-year career, so

please do join us, benefit from her

experience, and glean her predictions

for the future changes and challenges

credit professionals are likely to


The event is taking place at 4:30pm on

Wednesday 12 May. For details go to https://

Allica performance

ALLICA Bank has published figures to

show it has supported SMEs across

the UK with £71m of completed loans

and a further c.£120m of committed

lending offers currently in the

process of completion. The majority

(85 percent) of this lending is to

businesses outside of London. The

bank says it is on track to complete

as much lending in the first quarter

of 2021, as in the whole of 2020, and

anticipates it will make over £500m in

committed lending offers in 2021.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 7


Comic Relief?

The impact the forthcoming Debt Relief Scheme

will have on creditors is no laughing matter.

AUTHORS – Philip Roberts FCICM

THE new Government scheme

which aims to help people

experiencing difficulties with

debt is coming into force on

4 May 2021. These are very

important changes and are

another positive step towards encouraging

individuals who are experiencing difficulty

with debt to seek help from the debt advice

sector. The changes are comprehensive

and will require creditors affected by the

scheme (and their agents) to implement

robust controls to ensure compliance.

The scheme gives individuals

who are experiencing

difficulties with debt, access to

a 60-day standard breathing

space from creditor action to

recover debts incurred.


Save for some limited exceptions, the Debt

Respite Scheme (Breathing Space) will

apply to debts owed by individuals, unless

they have been incurred in connection with

a VAT registered business or a partnership.

The scheme gives individuals who are

experiencing difficulties with debt, and who

actively seek advice from an authorised

debt advisor, access to a 60-day standard

breathing space from creditor action to

recover debts incurred. The scheme also

provides protection to individuals who are

receiving mental health crisis treatment.

The protection will last for as long as that

crisis treatment lasts plus a further 30 days


Throughout the breathing space, creditors

will be prevented from applying fees,

penalties, charges and interest on eligible

debts subject to the breathing space.

Creditors will not be able to contact a

debtor about the collection or enforcement

of a breathing space debt (unless required

to do so under the Consumer Credit Act

1974 or by the FCA Handbook) and must

suspend enforcement action during the

breathing space. Enforcement action

is comprehensively defined within the

regulations but includes starting any action

or legal proceedings (including bankruptcy

petitions), obtaining a writ or warrant,

serving certain notices for possession,

enforcing security on a breathing space

debt or making an application for default


Once an individual’s breathing space has

ended, they cannot be granted a further

standard breathing space for a period of

12 months. They can still enter a mental

health crisis breathing space.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 8



Under the scheme, breathing space

can only be started by an authorised

debt advice provider. Authorised

debt advisors will administer the

breathing space and will be the point

of contact for the debtors, creditors and

the creditors’ appointed agents. The

Insolvency Service will maintain the

electronic service that will be used to

keep a register of the breathing space

and will send notifications to creditors.

The register is not open to the public

(unlike the bankruptcy and insolvency


The moratorium on taking action and

applying fees, penalties and interest

on breathing space debts can come

at any stage of a recovery action.

Once authorised by the debt advisor,

the breathing space will start the day

after the details are recorded on the

register. At this time creditors (and/or

their agents) will be notified either by

electronic communication or post.

The onus is then on the creditor

or their agent to ensure that the

protections are observed throughout

the breathing space. If at this time

additional debts are located other than

those subject to the breathing space, the

creditor must notify the Debt Advisor.

Where a court or tribunal is already

involved, this will include sending them

written notification so that appropriate

measures can be implemented. A court

or tribunal that receives notification of

the breathing space after a bankruptcy

petition has been started must stay

those proceedings until the end of the

breathing space. Other proceedings

about the debt (other than the

enforcement of court judgments or

orders) can continue until the court or

tribunal makes an order or judgment.

There are certain debts including

mortgages, rent, taxes and utilities

that are classed as ongoing liabilities.

The guidance says that the debtor is

required to pay these where they can,

except for any arrears that are captured

within the breathing space. If these

ongoing debts are not paid, and where

the debt advisor thinks it is fair and

reasonable, there is a possibility that

the breathing space will be cancelled.

However, this does not appear to include

a mental health crisis breathing space.

During a standard breathing space

(i.e. not including a mental health crisis

breathing space) the debt advisor must

carry out a midway review to make

sure the debtor is complying with their

obligations no later than 35 days into

the breathing space.

It is worth noting that, in appropriate

circumstances, which include a creditor

being unfairly prejudiced by the

moratorium, the creditor can request

a review from the debt advisor or, if

necessary, from the court. The initial

request for a review must be made

within 20 days and should be supported

by evidence. The creditor can also apply

for permission from the court to take

enforcement action where prevented

from doing so by the moratorium.


There is much to think about for

creditors affected by the regulations.

The regulations are comprehensive, and

it is important that affected creditors

understand them. There is great deal

to prepare so that robust measures are

implemented to ensure compliance.

This is going to include

understanding which debts are eligible

and recording details of the breathing

space so that appropriate controls are in

place and debts are not inappropriately

pursued. Creditors should set up

processes to ensure all incoming

breathing space notifications (whether

electronic or by post) are recorded

without delay.

Effective communication between

creditors, agents and the court will be

crucial to ensure that unnecessary and

unrecoverable costs are not incurred. If

creditors fail to apply breathing space

protections, any action taken will

be void and they may become liable

for the debtor’s costs. The impact on

creditors will depend on the nature of

their business and their ability to absorb

delays in receiving payment.

Although there will no doubt be

some challenges with implementation,

this further encouragement for

individuals struggling with debt to seek

help from the money advice sector is a

positive step.

We are working with creditors to

put in place procedures to effectively

comply with the regulations and to

maximise prospects of making fair and

ethical recoveries.

Clarke Willmott is a national law

firm with offices in Birmingham,

Bristol, Cardiff, London, Manchester,

Southampton and Taunton. It has an

industry leading team of debt recovery

lawyers. Operating for over 25 years, the

team acts for organisations of all sizes.

Philip Roberts FCICM, Partner at Clarke

Willmott LLP is a member of the CICM

Think Tank.



Meritorious Service

THE Executive Board of Trustees

unanimously agreed at its recent

meeting, to award the 2021 Meritorious

Service Award to Jane Abramson

MCICM and Kim Delaney-Bowen

MCICM. Congratulations to Jane and

Kim, true unsung heroes for their

service to the Institute and the wider

credit community. The formal award

presentations will take place later

this year, and will be covered in CM


Turner Lecture

THE famous Turner Lecture, organised

by the Kent Branch, will go ahead later

in the year, despite the challenges of

COVID. Strongly supported by CICM

CEO Sue Chapple, and sponsorship

from the HCEO Association, Global

Recoveries, Henderson Chambers

and T G Baynes, the event will

include speakers from the world

of debt collection, insolvency, and

enforcement. It is hoped that Professor

Turner, former CICM President, will

be there in person, assuming it is safe

to do so. A date has been pencilled in

for 3 December, but early booking is

encouraged. For more details, contact

Open Borders Direct

CICM has agreed a three-month

Helpline access for any member who

is struggling to make heads or tails

of the paperwork or processes in

importing or exporting. It is hosted on and under

the ‘SuperSearch’ where members will

be guided by an AI Robot. Further help

is available through an ‘Ask an Expert’

feature – free of charge – providing

direct access to a team of Open

Borders Direct experts.

Lesley Batchelor, the brains behind

the new platform, says the intention is

to solve any international trade related

problem: “When you ‘Ask an Expert’

we’ll ask you some pre-set questions

about the Harmonised Tariff Code and

any forms that are part of the problem

to help OBD to provide a speedy

response. The team at Open Borders

Direct are committed to finding an

answer for you; all you have to do is

sign up using the Trade Association

dropdown to take advantage of your 3

months free subscription – no credit

card details are needed to access this


Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 9

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 10


Bridge of Sighs

The relief as we cross to a more

‘normal world' is palpable.

AUTHOR – Sue Chapple FCICM

Sue Chapple FCICM

AS news of the easing of

lockdown is announced and

children are heading back

into schools, a collective sigh

of relief can be heard across

businesses throughout the

UK. There is a sense of ‘normal service’ being

resumed after a lengthy and most unwelcome


In the last 12 months the Institute has

necessarily had to put some of its longer-term

plans in abeyance while it focuses on the

here and now and supporting its members

and the wider business community through

the pandemic. But that does not mean that

the strategy we have been developing has

been shelved; it simply means that tactical

expediency has been the order of the day.

Now, however, I get the sense that we are

on a new trajectory, an opportunity to return

with vigour to a roadmap of our own and a

five-year plan to transform the CICM into the

organisation it needs to be to meet the demands

of future generations of credit professionals.

As such you will begin to see a number

of changes in our HQ team, including the

appointment of a Transformational Operations

Lead to oversee our operational process and

efficiency, and a senior credit manager to be

directly responsible for managing our various

partner relationships – our Corporate Partners

and CICMQ accredited businesses, for example

– and ensuring they are better informed of the

huge range of training and support services we

can provide through our highly-experienced

Learning & Development team. We will also be

concluding the sale of The Water Mill, giving

us the opportunity to start afresh in new

offices with more open space better suited to

our needs going forward.

The last 12 months have been busy for our

members too. One of the few positives to come

from the pandemic has been how it has once

again made businesses focus on the cash,

and therefore the importance of professional

cashflow management. It has accelerated the

introduction of new technology and processes

to support the credit management teams that

might previously have taken many years to


At the moment, according to the

recruitment specialists, credit teams have not

been too badly impacted by way of job losses

or redundancies though we are not through the

woods yet. It is not clear whether the ‘Tsunami’

of business failures that have been predicted

for the future will actually come about in the

volumes anticipated, but there are bound to

be some upsets along the way, and we must be

ready for them.

We must also be ready for other challenges

heading rapidly in our direction, including the

change in rules regarding Breathing Space and

the much anticipated and largely unwelcome

re-introduction of Crown Preference. Every

business that fails inevitably owes money

to HMRC, and if Her Majesty’s Revenue and

Customs office is to take priority over all other

creditors, I worry how that will impact lending

and the future availability of credit. Lending

decisions are based on risk, and there needs

to be a reasonable expectation that a loan

that defaults can be recovered. Some lenders

might understandably reduce the credit they

are prepared to extend, just at the point that

the country is crying out for liquidity. I worry

also about how it will impact the insolvency

profession, and the vital role that Insolvency

Practitioners play in the business and credit


These are issues, perhaps, for another day,

although that day is fast approaching. Getting

through the next few weeks is my immediate

priority, when I will reveal more specific plans

for your Institute and the support we will be

providing to ensure we remain ‘fit for purpose’

for the foreseeable future and beyond.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 11



Buy Now Pay Later regulation offers lenders

a chance to re-assess their customers.

AUTHOR – Aneesh Varma

IF you’re involved in credit, you’ll have now had a

chance to digest The Woolard Review. A clear win for

the consumer, BNPL lenders must now prepare for

FCA regulation by proving their ability to accurately

assess a customer’s affordability.

Anticipated by many, the timing of the report is

right. While the wider conversation may now have shifted

towards recovery and renewal, the economic impact of

COVID-19 will continue to bite for many for a while longer.

Against this backdrop, a fairer, more robust assessment of

an individual’s true affordability as they take out new credit

is correct.

For the credit industry, we must not forget that our work

is judged not by the freedom we offer to consumers through

access to credit, but crucially in making sure it comes back.

This new regulation is a welcome reminder to us of the need,

at every level of credit, to understand the real-time situation

of the consumer. However short-term or low value that loan,

however it’s advertised and whoever it targets, fundamentally

that promise remains the same.

With five million of us spending £2.7bn using the service

since the pandemic began, few payment methods have

experienced such exponential growth as BNPL. In a year that

has kept us at home, the convenience and flexibility it offers

consumers has more than trebled demand. And this growth

isn’t just confined to the UK: across the world, the popularity

for BNPL continues to trend upwards.


BNPL customers are younger than those typically taking on

credit (a quarter are under 24 years old) and three quarters

are female. The average transaction value is £70, with fashion

and footwear the most popular purchase categories. But

some are making more substantial purchases, using BNPL

to book holidays or for more expensive items for the home –

spreading the cost over time to create manageable payments

(either monthly or split into parts) in place of the upfront


Yet alongside such ease and flexibility, comes compromise.

And we’ve heard instances this year of some of that pain.

Two fifths of Christmas shoppers revealed their concern

at the start of the year in their ability to repay. Stories have

emerged of consumers accidentally using BNPL at checkout,

of not receiving notifications when they’ve missed a payment

and even of being incentivised to use it in exchange for a

charity donation. Quite rightly, instances that began to raise

red flags with the regulator.

As a sector, the response to The Woolard Review has been

unanimously positive. Many lenders provided submissions

in an attempt to frame the narrative that would follow. In

its levelling out of the industry, traditional lenders who

offer store cards to their customers but have been subject

to stricter regulation have also breathed a sigh of relief at

the report’s publication. With all lenders now being asked

to adhere to the same principles, the playing field has begun

to level.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 12


AUTHOR – Aneesh Varma

The impact of these changes is being seen

internationally, most recently in Australia,

where the AFIA have confirmed their

intention to launch a BNPL ‘Code of Conduct’

to better regulate the sector by ensuring

a minimum standard is met across the

industry. Once again, where UK regulation

leads, others follow.


Yet amid the noise of the lending community,

it’s important we remember the intended

beneficiary here: the consumer. Few

BNPL customers today will be aware of the

planned changes to how this new service

that has shifted their shopping habits

so much in recent years is set to evolve.

Regulatory intention or sector enthusiasm

doesn’t protect consumers. It doesn’t stop

people from taking on unaffordable debt and

spiralling into financial difficulty. So what


BNPL customers are

younger than those typically

taking on credit (a quarter

are under 24 years old) and

three quarters are female.

The average transaction

value is £70, with fashion and

footwear the most popular

purchase categories.

For BNPL lenders, attention now turns

to implementation. With the FCA making

it clear that they won’t be providing a

prescriptive approach, the responsibility will

come down to each lender to interpret the

rules appropriately.

The implementation of affordability

checks for any lender requires a difficult

dance between friction, accuracy and cost

– the achievement of one likely to be at the

cost of either of the others. But for BNPL

lenders, the compromise is likely to be even

more pronounced. With exceptional user

experience key to the growth of these brands

to date, affordability checks will need to be

as smooth as these companies’ advertising.

BNPL providers are unlikely to be anything

but exacting.

We refer to this balance in credit as

‘thoughtful friction’. To meet the needs of

today's consumer, affordability assessments

must be seamless and intuitive. Information

must be gathered dynamically from the

consumer and in real-time. Anything less isn’t

good enough. We must allow the consumer

to represent themselves fairly in the process

and to be heard. That is the responsible thing

to do. Yet more fundamental than consumer

experience, at the heart of the issue sits the

data. Stressed in the detail of The Woolard

Review is the importance, for both lenders

and for the public, of timely access to high

quality credit information. Confidence in the

‘big three’ in providing this is in doubt. BNPL

lenders have stated already that the rate of

change will be driven by the speed at which

the traditional credit bureau can help, with

legacy infrastructure cited as a significant

blocker. Slow pace and legacy systems will,

Klarna has made clear, hamper their ability

to reform. The timeline for implementation,

says Klarna, rests with the bureau.


But BNPL lenders must act. And with it,

the opportunity for lenders in assessing

alternative, more nimble options to better

stand up to the regulation sharpens. Once

again, the importance of the individual in

improving their own credit story builds. If

the traditional credit bureau can’t help fast

enough, it’s time for lenders to consider the

fintechs that can.

This new regulation also provides lenders

with the opportunity to rethink their

engagement and relationships with their

customers. Post-pandemic recovery will take

time. Lenders must rebuild their confidence,

in accordance with this new regulation. How

can they do this? With real-time affordability

solutions that return the consumer to the

heart of their own credit story.

Once again, the regulator has caught up with

the innovation. It’s now up to all of us to make

sure that the true winners of this outcome

remain the consumer. And if lenders can take

time to understand who their customers are

now, we all stand to benefit from fairer, more

personalised, more affordable credit in the


Aneesh Varma is Founder and

CEO of credit fintech, Aire.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 13




Judgments can often become

worthless pieces of paper if they

cannot be enforced effectively.


THE latest figures from the Registry

Trust in relation to County Court

Judgments in 2020 suggest that

numbers registered against both

businesses and consumers are


The average values, however, are rising,

quite significantly, and the numbers are

far from uniform. The very low proportions

of judgments marked as ‘satisfied’ also

suggest a major problem is just around the



The number of CCJ’s registered against

businesses in England and Wales fell 39 percent

from 126,731 in 2019 to 77,139 in 2020.

The total value of CCJ debt owed by

businesses fell by nearly 20 percent, from just

under £401m to £322m. The average value of

business debt rose to £4,178 in 2020, 32 percent

higher than the £3,162 seen in 2019. The median

value rose by 43 percent from £1,038 to £1,485

over the period.

The number of judgments against larger

incorporated businesses fell by 41 percent, from

94,389 in 2019 to 55,537 in 2020. The total value

of judgments fell by much less, 16 percent, from

£305m to £255m. As a result, the average value

rose by 42 percent from £3,226 to £4,588, with

the median value up 73 percent from £925 to


The number of CCJs against smaller

unincorporated businesses fell by 33 percent,

from 32,342 to 21,602, with the total value

dropping from £96m to over £67m, down 30

percent. The average value rose from £2,973

to £3,123, up just over five percent, while the

median value rose by just under three percent

from £1,245 to £1,280.

The number of business judgments

marked as ‘satisfied’ in 2020 was 11,940,

a fall of 13 percent from the 13,723 in

2019. As the number of judgments registered

in 2020 was lower than in 2019, the

proportion of judgments marked as satisfied

has risen, though it remains low at 10.8



The number of CCJ’s issued against consumers

in England and Wales in 2020 fell by 45 percent

compared to 2019, from 1,146,475 to 626,775.

The total value of CCJs registered in 2020

fell by 34 percent to £1.1bn, down from £1.7bn

in 2019. The average value of judgments rose

significantly by over 20 percent from £1,508 to

£1,813. The median value also rose from £673

to £787, an increase of nearly 17 percent. So,

over the year, there were fewer but larger value

judgments issued.

It is worth noting that the number of CCJ’s

taken out against consumers in the last quarter

of 2020 was 73 percent higher than in the third

quarter of 2020, suggesting numbers are rising

sharply again. I believe we will see numbers

continue to increase over the coming months.

The number of judgments marked as

‘satisfied’ in 2020 was 186,223, a fall of over six

percent from the 198,958 in 2019. As the number

of judgments registered in 2020 was lower than

in 2019, the proportion of judgments marked

as satisfied has risen but it remains very low at

21.7 percent.

Registry Trust Chair, Mick McAteer, said

of the figures: “Government and regulator

interventions, and forbearance by creditors,

in response to the COVID-19 crisis clearly

protected households during most of 2020.

“But, as we feared, the numbers of CCJ’s rose

sharply in the last quarter of 2020 as the damage

to household finances by the economic crisis

worked through the system. The fact that the

number of judgments marked as satisfied fell

is a real cause for concern as it could adversely

affect households’ future access to affordable



Judgments can often become worthless pieces

of paper if they cannot be enforced effectively.

Practitioners report that the performance of the

County Court Bailiff Service is often very poor,

and the situation has deteriorated further with

the introduction of the Warrants of Control

Support Centres – a service that has diluted

service even further and some would suggest is

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 14



almost tantamount to an admission of defeat.

It is essential that more enforcement is opened

up to the private sector to provide all creditors

with access to justice, subject to the appropriate

safeguards of course to deal with any legitimate

concerns that there may be. Effective

enforcement of judgments is an essential part of

any justice system yet currently the only option

for many creditors are county court bailiffs.

Other commentators suggest an overhaul of

the process to manage the transferring of a CCJ

up to the High Court for enforcement to make

that a digital process rather than being paper



The Pandemic is bound to result in a significant

backlog of CCJ’s that need to be enforced against

the debtor’s goods. It is a shame that despite the

CCUA lobbying for many years, the situation

remains unchanged and those creditors with

debts under £600 or regulated consumer credit

debts are still limited to instructing county court


If all creditors had access to justice with

the ability to enforce through the High Court,

there is no doubt that we would most likely see

a significant increase in recoveries, which, is

much needed by creditors during such difficult


Effective enforcement can make the

difference between solvency and insolvency for

businesses and can determine whether they can

continue to trade. On several occasions during

my career, I have seen one debt make or break

a company.


So what does best practice look like? Put simply,

do your homework:

• It is crucial to ‘Know your debtor’ and

information that you might capture at the

front end of a relationship with a customer, for

example, via a credit application form could

prove to be useful intelligence at the back end

when it becomes necessary to enforce against


• In the current climate it also pays to be

mindful of vulnerability and how the debtor

might have been affected by the pandemic.

These considerations should extend to both

consumer and commercial debtors at this time.

If it is a commercial debtor, has the business

been affected by COVID-19 and is it still trading?

• Have you invoiced, sued, and obtained

judgment against the correct name? We are often

instructed to pursue the wrong legal entity if, for

example, the defendant is shown as a firm when

in fact it is a limited company, which, could

leave the judgment as defective and potentially

unenforceable without amendment.


“But, as we

feared, the

numbers of CCJ’s

rose sharply

in the last

quarter of 2020

as the damage

to household

finances by the

economic crisis

worked through

the system’’

• If it is a limited company, have you checked

that is still live, not insolvent or has it been

dissolved or struck off the record? We have

been directed to company premises which were

demolished many years ago.

• Is the debtor likely to have any assets or do you

know of any? For example, vehicle details or the

location of stock?

• Do you have the right and current address?

Bear in mind registered office address as well as

any trading addresses. I recommend supplying

your HCEO with all addresses that you know of.

• Pass on any additional information you have

about the debtor, for example, a photograph for

identification purposes, the best time to attend

if their business only opens between certain

hours. Bear in mind the type of business as

certain businesses such as pubs and restaurants

may not be opening at all.

• If the debtor contacts you directly once you

have issued a writ and seeks to make payment

or an arrangement with you directly, you must

refer them on to the HCEO to ensure that any

fees due are included. Otherwise, you could

become liable for the fees yourself.

• As we expect an increase in activity, I would

recommend issuing your writs sooner rather

than later. Act quickly as we face uncertain

times ahead so do not regret leaving it too late!

You are much more likely to collect your debts

if you pursue them expeditiously. Remember:

cash is king, but information is too!

Neil Jinks is Head of Client Development

& Communications at Court Enforcement

Services Ltd, a member of CICM’s Advisory

Council and President of the IRRV West

Midlands Association.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 15

AFTER Brexit, the enforcement

of British judgments

throughout the EU is much

less complicated than

the Brussels Recast Regulation.

However, several

factors may alleviate many anticipated

difficulties in enforcement.

First of all, any judgments made in cases

belonging to the 2005 Hague Convention

must be recognised and enforced in other

contracting states, with limited exceptions.

Secondly, bilateral treaties on

enforcement of judgments between the UK

and France, UK and Germany, UK and Italy,

UK and the Netherlands, UK and Austria

and UK and Belgium, and other major EU

jurisdictions existed before Britain joined

the EU, but they are expected to play their

full role again after Brexit (provided they

were not annihilated by the UK being in the

EU and are still following the maxim pacta

sunt servanda, i.e. are still in force).

Third, given The City of London’s

(former) position as an important financial

centre (which should not be taken for

granted anymore, given the withdrawal of

EU passporting rights, and several other EU

restrictions on financial services as regard

third countries) some of the EU-registered



The impact of Brexit on

cross-border enforcement – Part 2

AUTHOR – Dmytro Tupchiienko















applied (if


RoW 1


law applies

The English courts

have more powerful

and aggressive tools

than any other EU

Member state.

* RoW 1 - Rest of the World

It was possible to

serve an English

court claim form in the

EU without the English

courts’ permission

under the provisions in

the CPR 6.33.









Hague applied

(if applicable),

if not domestic







applied (if



applied (if



law applies


law applies

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 16


AUTHOR – Dmytro Tupchiienko

Even if it is more difficult to enforce in other

EU member states, the British court's judgment

will still be of great value.

Financial Parties

defendants with significant assets in

the UK, including those with assets in

international banks with branches in

London, may find that these assets can

be used to repay the English judgment

debt. Even if it is more difficult to enforce

in other EU member states, the British

court's judgment will still be of great


Finally, the English courts have more

powerful and aggressive tools than any

other EU Member state (for example,

through mandatory public orders to

obtain or extract useful information about

the location of assets) to help enforce



For the judgement which was given in

the process that began before the end

of the transition period (irrespective of

whether the issuing court was in the UK

or otherwise in the EU), the pre-Brexit

regime continued to apply. During that


It was possible to serve an English court

claim form in the EU without the English

courts’ permission under the provisions

in the CPR 6.33.


The mechanics of service of English

courts proceedings in the EU were

governed by the Service Regulation.

In other words, the judgement of

the English court (and other UK courts

e.g Scottish or Northern Irish) will be

enforced in the EU under the Recast

Brussels regulations and court judgements

in the EU member state will be able to be

enforced in the UK under that regime.


For the process beginning after the end

of the transition period, the enforcement

of the EU judgement in English courts

(and vice versa) will be regulated

by the relevant national rules of EU

Member States regarding enforcement

judgements made in third countries. One

consequence of new settings is that the

type of judgement that can be enforced

will become narrower in scope, especially

where Hague 2005 does not apply. Of

course, as far as the EU’s judgment

enforcement in the UK is concerned, the

procedure will be different too, and will

take longer, again, especially where Hague

2005 does not apply. That said, in non-

Hague situations, the process should be

no different from what happens when the

steps are taken to enforce the judgement

given by, for example, the New York court,

in accordance with the specified rules

that apply there.



Financial Parties

Any other court

Financial Parties

English courts

English courts




Brexit has unravelled certain clauses

which seem to be hidden or previously not

in existence. Such clauses are important

in dispute between parties and especially

when there are elements of cross-border

transaction. Jurisdiction clauses appear

in three different forms:

1. Exclusive: in this case, disputes are

subjected to courts of one jurisdiction.

2. Asymmetric: includes courts of one

jurisdiction and any other court

3. Non-exclusive: nominate the state

of the country to have jurisdiction but

without reducing the right parties to start

the process in other court jurisdictions, if



Any other court

Any other court

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 17


Is it time to get out there and into

the sunshine once again?

AUTHOR – David Andrews

But this is not the makeover

any of us anticipated. Now,

as we stumble gradually

from the fading waves of

end-game lockdown pulses,

the rebuilding will, we hope,


Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 18


AUTHOR – David Andrews

the country needs is

annihilation of the enemy,’

observed Lord Nelson in

the run up to the Battle of



The great warrior

was of course referring principally to the French,

and I daresay many of us may have felt that some of

President Macron’s digs at our post-Brexit nation’s

fierce fightback against the pandemic were deserving

of a full canon broadside.

Pro tem, our outstanding vaccine rollout I would

imagine to be more than enough for senior politicians

on the European mainland to keep their less generous

views to themselves. When all is said and done, none

of us have had it easy. It is just that we have quietly

got on with rebuilding a devastated landscape and hey,

what a difference a few weeks can make.

When I cycled into the centre of Brighton in early

February, a harsh wintry westerly nipping at my

ankles, the effects of the past, horrendous 12 months

were clear. The doorway of travel firm Trailfinders had

become a temporary campsite for several homeless

people, who along with a couple of large dogs looked

to be – on balance at least – reasonably content with

their new pitch.

As the specialist shop is located on one of the city’s

busiest streets, and urban campsites are an unusual

site even in the depths of a pandemic, the brightly

coloured tent and scattered detritus seemed to me yet

another ironic metaphor for our ravaged economy. An

erstwhile thriving holiday company, grounded like all

of us for the best part of a year, now hosting a nomadic

troupe, also going nowhere, but calling it home for the

time being at least.


Brighton, a city, looking ‘perennially as if it is helping

the police with their enquiries’ as the late Keith

Waterhouse memorably put it, had rarely looked

so bleak, even in the 40 or so years I have lived

here. Resembling more an out-take from the movie

adaptation of Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, the postapocalyptic

effect of rows of shuttered and long since

closed-down shops fronts has effectively nuked the

inner city.

We all know ‘the UK High Street’, as it were, was in

trouble long before the pandemic set about banging

the final nails into the coffin, and our erstwhile

homogeneous, frankly unattractive town and city

centres were long overdue a makeover.

Even without the negligence of major retail

conglomerates, which have collectively presided over

shocking periods of decay and under-investment,

the High Street was on a hiding to nothing. A serious

rethink was long overdue.

But this is not the makeover any of us anticipated.

Now, as we stumble gradually from the fading waves

of end-game lockdown pulses, the rebuilding will, we

hope, begin.

I think back to my arrival in the city, in the

autumn of 1979, when the UK was in the grip of an

appalling recession. Small businesses were closing

left, right and centre, new building had ground to a

halt, manufacturing production was in freefall, youth

unemployment was soaring. The chances of finding

a job – any job – were low. And the winter of ‘79/’80,

when we still seemed to have proper seasons, was

freezing. Bleak.

There were no huge handouts to be anticipated

from Government, it was exceedingly difficult to

claim unemployment benefit, and prospects for

any youngsters not training for one of the main

professions were extremely poor. But, as we always

do, we recovered. Bearing in mind that all recessions

are cyclical, the 1980s were powered initially by

what became known as the Lawson Boom, after the

Chancellor of the day, Nigel Lawson.

As anyone who had a mortgage in those days may

recall however, borrowing rates were driven up to

giddying heights – up to 15 percent at the peak in 1989.

Now that was fine if you owned your property outright

and had money in the bank. You were laughing. But

for most homebuyers, it was an economic disaster.

Many, facing impending bankruptcy, hoisted the white

flag and posted the keys to their homes back to their



It is all a long, long time ago. But post-war capitalism

has always moved in boom-and-bust cycles. In other

words, as we emerge blinking into the watery Spring

sunshine, we will get back to what we once regarded

as ‘normal’.

As Mohammed Ali said following his brutal,

bruising encounter with Ken Norton, a far lower

ranked journeyman heavyweight: ‘Man that fella hit

me hard – but I will be back. I will be back stronger. I

will be back punching mean. And I will be back even

better looking than I am now.’


As our astonishing vaccine rollout has demonstrated,

we are a brilliantly capable nation, clever and

resourceful. We have shown that we can still lead the

world in our enterprise and industrial and intellectual

might, and while (whisper it) the French and Germans

have been scratching their heads, looking across the

Channel and wondering how they have been left so far

behind, our new dawn is now a reality.

I know that one day – and it will not be too long now

– we will be shuffling along on that interminable line,

waiting to board an airliner, to whisk us off to some

exotic beach or city. I know that the blokes who have

set up camp in the generously proportioned doorway

of Trailfinders will be obliged to take down their tent,

while one of the few viable businesses on our High

Streets once again fires up its systems and looks for

the best deals for a vacation-starved population.

And I know that my local pub will be back, busier

than ever. Those of us who have perhaps been more

fortunate than our peers in the uneven hand dealt by

the pandemic may well feel it incumbent upon them

to spread the love. Spend, and then maybe spend a bit

more. Because the gloom of the winter of 2020/21 is

now behind us.

It is time to get out there and into the sunshine once


David Andrews is a freelance journalist.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 19



Individual Voluntary Arrangements are

broken but can be repaired.

AUTHOR – Peter Wallwork FCICM


think I can look back with a sense of

satisfaction when I think of the work

we did whilst I was CEO of the trade

association for the debt collection

industry: those that were kind enough to

say, talked of us changing the face and

perception of the debt collection industry, very

much for the better.

When I stood down from the role at the end

of July 2020, mid-way through the pandemic,

jovially rebuking those who wished me a ‘happy

retirement’, I found myself with some time to

reflect and decide what to do next. I certainly

felt that I wanted to continue with a formula of

improving the way the industry works, for both

the businesses that operate in it and crucially, the

consumer in debt.

Enter Louise Yates, a long-time campaigner

for good in the insolvency world, founder of The

Insolvency Panel and co-Founder and CEO of

a new company, Trustfolio, and suddenly I was

interested in what we could do to change the

way Individual Voluntary Arrangements (IVAs)

are run.


Don’t get me wrong, at the Credit Services

Association (CSA), IVAs were always on the radar

but not really on the agenda, so I had some

learning to do and I was surprised at what I saw.

Possibly the biggest thing I realised was how

little those away from the coalface (including

me) actually knew about IVAs and how that lack

of understanding, especially when considering

how to correct what is perceived to be wrong, is

potentially quite dangerous.

I’ve heard all kinds of horror stories about

the way in which various parties in the industry

have operated over the years; how the current

regulatory regime has been criticised for finding

it difficult to be effective. I’ve heard the headline

criticism from those that deal with the fall-out

customers in debt experience when IVAs fail.

Chris Woolard in his Review for the FCA,

listened to inputs given by consumer advocates

and creditors who declared that the IVA market

is broken. He recommended that regulators, with

support from Government, should act swiftly to

remedy the issues created by the fee structures

and that they should collaborate more in the

longer term.

However, simply declaring very bluntly that

something is broken, tends to suggest that things

are so bad, they are beyond repair. Whilst I’ve not

suddenly turned into an evangelist for IVAs per se,

I’d like to question that.

Sure, I can see regulatory gaps where it isn’t 100

percent clear who is responsible for a particular

part of the process and which regulator should be

keeping an eye on it. I can see also how each player

in the process is commercially driven to pushing

an IVA through. And I can see the alarmingly

high early failure rate, indicating there are issues

around the appropriateness of recommending an

IVA and the worse place that puts the customer

in debt, from a financial and emotional wellbeing

point of view when things go wrong.


But coming at this problem with a relatively fresh

pair of eyes, it is possible to see some fairly simple

remedies that could restore the humble IVA back

to its place in the advisers’ debt-solution arsenal.

There is, understandably considerable focus

and concern around a couple of key areas – the

fees an Insolvency Practitioner (IP) earns, even

at the largely now agreed fixed rate of £3650 per

case, on the face of it still sounds high; the fees

lead generators earn, reportedly up to £1000 per

case, sound on the face of it, eye watering. Then

there’s the consumer groups’ claims around misselling

and the link between mis-selling and the

fees up for grabs that drives it all and you have on

the face of it, a set of very easy and obvious targets

to aim at and an easy solution in mind.

I’m not arguing in favour, or against these fees.

These are primarily commercial arrangements

between firms, not the consumer. In an IVA,

the creditor is effectively paying for the fees, by

writing off the debt owed, including any IP fees,

over and above what the customer in an IVA, can

afford to pay over 60 or 72 months.

So why would a regulator be concerned with

these fees? Surely market forces can effectively

control all this? After all, they don’t appear so

concerned with how much commission a debt

collection agency earns from a bank or how much

a credit card company sells its debt to a debt buyer.

The answer is simply because when an IVA

fails, the debt forgiveness is withdrawn by the

creditors, the full debts are reinstated, and the

money that the customer in debt has paid up to

the point of failure, has in many cases gone largely

to the IP. Potentially the customer in debt is up to

£3650 worse off than when they started looking for

a debt solution in the first place.


Worryingly, around 20 to 30 percent of IVAs fail in

the first couple of years. It seems to me that if we

can reduce that number, we can tackle the crux of

the issue head on.

Then there are the claims around mis-selling,

which are also calling into question the whole

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 20


AUTHOR – Peter Wallwork FCICM

wrong effect. There needs to be appropriate

and effective regulation of course, but that’s

different. Reduced income could mean they

simply exit the market. What we need is a

reduction in the early failures.

What if successful IVAs do get consumers out

of debt and are generally more successful than

Debt Management Plans (DMPs)? People will

feel they already know the answer to this, but

we don’t really know, and we shouldn’t make the

assumption they are not. We need data to tell us

what is happening, and we don’t have that today.

I’m not sure I have enough space here to argue

whether it is better to approach a consumer to

see if they would like help or wait for them to

come and ask for it – Sir Hector Sants wants to

get another two million consumers into debt

advice but is struggling to get them to come

forward, and when they do, there isn’t the

capacity to serve them. It’s a circular problem

that various people including Peter Wyman,

have touched on many times in the past.

benefit of IVAs. The problem here is that there

isn’t enough data out there to understand what

is really going on and there aren’t the tools in the

right places to get to it. There are gaps where it

possibly isn’t clear who is responsible for what

– that’s the regulatory issue Chris Woolard is

talking about – and it might be that’s causing

some of the early failures.

Without data, we don’t know the full picture

– we don’t know enough about why the early

failures are really happening and whilst we can

take a guess, that’s not very scientific; we also

don’t know some of the basics, like how IVAs

perform relative to debt management plans and

that might be quite interesting to see.

It could be that simply aiming for the fees

the IPs and lead generators charge and being

seen to be taking some decisive action clamping

down or capping them, is going to have the

I’ve heard all kinds

of horror stories

about the way in

which various

parties in the

industry have

operated over the

years; how the

current regulatory

regime has been

criticised for

finding it difficult

to be effective.


I’ve often said it before, but the right outcome for

customers in debt is inevitably the right outcome

for the businesses serving those customers too.

That’s how the debt collection industry evolved

over recent years and it works. Regulators can

drive these right outcomes of course, but they

too need data to do that effectively.

And what about the creditors that are

effectively paying for much of this through debt

forgiveness? The answer’s the same, you guessed

it - they need data to see they are complying with

regulation and managing IVAs effectively too.

IVAs need to be used and run properly and I

realise there will be other issues commentators

will want to talk about. But IVAs are a key part

of the toolbox for those advising customers in

debt, especially with the forecast tsunami of

financial difficulty that will follow once the

government income support schemes start to

be wound down. If we can solve the key issues

and revive IVAs’ reputation, they should once

again become a trusted and respected solution

and that’s a really good a win-win for consumer,

creditor, IP et al.

Peter Wallwork FCICM is a member of the

Trustfolio team (peter.wallwork@trustfolio. He is also a non-Executive Director

of the Money Advice Liaison Group as well

as holding other non-executive and advisory

roles. Trustfolio is a specialist software service

provider, offering an innovative end-to-end

solution to for the better management of

customers in IVA solutions.

The Insolvency Panel is a not-for-profit Social

Enterprise supporting over 200 free-sector debt

advice agencies (1000+ individual debt advisers)

with free digital tools and campaigning for

better IVA provision.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 21

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 22




Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 23

01993 220557


Singapore may

be small, but it’s

perfectly placed

(Part 1 ).

Small Island

AUTHOR – Adam Bernstein

SINGAPORE is an island city

state associated with Sir

Stamford Raffles who founded

it as a trading post in 1819,

the Japanese occupation in

1942, and the virtual banning

of chewing gum. The reality, of course, is

much more than that.

With a history that stretches back

across the millennia, Singapore gained

self-governing status in 1959 and joined

the Federation of Malaysia in 1963.

However, following differences with

fellow members it was expelled in 1965

and became fully independent.

One degree of latitude off the equator,

Singapore consists of one main island,

63 smaller islands and islets and one

outlying islet. With an area of just 700

sq km, it packs a mighty punch – well

above what might be thought of it. Data

from the International Monetary Fund

estimates that as of 2020 its people enjoyed

the world’s second largest GDP (PPP) of

$95,603. In comparison Luxembourg sat

in first place with $112,875, the US in

seventh place with $63,051 and the UK

was shockingly found in 25th place with

just $44,288.


Singaporeans are quite diverse. Of its 5.7m

population, 4.03m are residents (citizens

and permanent residents) and around

1.68m are non-residents. The state is very

densely populated, coming in second

after Monaco. Ethnically, Chinese make

up around 76 percent of the population,

Malays 15 percent and ethnic Indians

around seven percent.

But the people are aging. November

2020 data from the CIA World Factbook,

illustrates to what degree. Those aged

under 15 years make up 13 percent of the

population; 15-24 years 15 percent; 25-54

years represent 50 percent; 55-64 years is

11 percent while persons aged 65 years

and over number 11 percent of Singapore’s

inhabitants. Compare those statistics over

the years since 1970 and the age bulge is

moving from young to old.

There are four official languages –

Malay, English, Mandarin and Tamil.

Malay is the official language; English is

used for business. Education is a key part

of Government spending, comprising

around 20 percent of the national budget.

According to data from the Programme

for International Student Assessment,

as run by the OECD, Singapore does

exceedingly well; students score at the

top of all countries examined for reading,

maths and science – well above the

OECD average. As for further education,

Singapore has six ‘local’ universities of

its own but is also home to a number of

overseas and private institutions.

Indeed, success in academia is seen

as a high priority for families who have

effectively made private education a very

lucrative industry; as far back as 2008, the

Straits Times found that some 97 percent

of students went without any form of extra



Singapore may be small, but it’s perfectly

placed. It’s thought that around half of

the world’s population can be reached

within six hours by air, and by definition

of its location, it’s a superb location from

which to gain a foothold into the currently

expanding ASEAN economies which

themselves are home to around 630m


On top of that, Singapore is sited at

a point where shipping lanes from the

East and West meet; it’s essentially a wellconnected,

very friendly trading hub

– one of the world’s biggest. The Straits

Times, reckoned in a May 2017 report, that

Singapore ‘has the potential to become the

world's largest commodity trading hub

in the decade ahead as trade flows shift

towards Asia.’ Rising demand for metals

and agricultural products in the region

will enhance its status in the region.

The report also noted that ‘some 80

percent of the world's leading commodity

trading companies have a presence here.’

Names include commodity trading and

mining giant Glencore; energy firms BP,

Shell and PetroChina; the world's top-four

food commodity traders – Bunge, Cargill,

Louis Dreyfus and Archer Daniels Midland;

as well as home-grown companies Olam,

Wilmar, Kairos and Fortrec.

Singapore may be Southeast Asia’s

smallest country, but it’s home to more

than 7,000 multinational corporations and

150 international organisations.

The point is further made in a

September 2020 report on Worldfinance.

com which detailed its predictions

for the five countries most likely to be

the world’s next manufacturing hubs.

Singapore takes up one of the slots on the

list, along with Malaysia, Vietnam, India,

Mexico and not unsurprisingly, China.

Interestingly, the report says that in recent

times, manufacturing in Singapore has

declined to just 19 prcent of GDP, but

that ‘the trade war and the coronavirus

pandemic could change this. As a trade

hub with liberal trade and investment

policies and a history of stable economic

growth, Singapore is well-positioned to

boost its manufacturing capabilities and

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 24

AUTHOR – Adam Bernstein

Unique vertical gardens

resembling towering trees, with

large canopies & colorful lights

at night. These unique trees

can be found all around the

Gardens. Supertrees are tree-like

structures that dominate the

Gardens’ landscape with heights

that range between 25 metres (82

ft) and 50 metres (160 ft).

capitalise on this opportunity.’

And for UK exporters, it’s notable that in

December 2020, Singapore signed a trade

agreement with the UK.


In terms of exports, a 2020 document from HSBC

highlights that top of Singapore’s export list is

machinery and equipment, chemicals, mineral

fuels, manufactured goods, pharmaceuticals,

electronics, non-electric engines and motors,

foodstuffs, and consumer goods.

Conversely, its top imports are machinery

and equipment, mineral fuels, chemicals,

gems and precious metals, foodstuffs, and

consumer goods.

It’s worth pointing out that Singapore

is incredibly important to exporters when

considering its position in the world imports

Pagoda in Chinese Garden – Singapore

Chinatown in Singapore at night.

‘Since it became

an independent

nation, Singapore

has, through land


grown in size by

almost a quarter: to

277 square miles

from 224. By 2030,

the Government

wants Singapore

to measure nearly

300 square miles.’

league. Based on data from the International

Trade Centre, in first place is the US which

imports goods worth $2,568bn, followed by

China at $2,068bn, the UK in fifth place at

$692bn. Singapore is in 15th place with imports

worth $359bn.

Now if we consider Singapore’s position as

an exporter, World Bank Data suggests that

China is in pole position with exports to the

tune of $2,643bn, the US is next with $2,498bn,

the UK is fifth with $891bn while Singapore is

9th on $645bn.

Financial services are important to

Singapore. A Business Times report in

September 2019, quoted a Global Financial

Centres Index survey by London-based think

tank Z/Yen and the China Development

Institute. It found that Singapore was in fourth

place as a financial hub; New York was in first

place, followed closely by London and Hong

Kong. It’s a strong base for insurers and those

in fintech. Incidentally, the survey believes

that Singapore’s financial sector is well placed

to benefit from Brexit in the long-term.

In other areas, and predictably considering

Singapore’s diminutive size, food security is

seen as a key issue which makes innovation

in agriculture and diversification of imports

central to planning; the sensitivity is the result

of a combination of rising demand and scarce

resources (there’s not much agriculture going

on… only seven percent is grown locally). And

just as with populations elsewhere around

the world, Singapore’s healthcare system is

having to deal with an ever-ageing population;

this makes the sector a natural target for

commercial exploitation.

Alongside this is scope for infrastructure

development opportunities. Remembering

that Singapore is small, it’s looking to new

solutions to maximise the limited space that

it has including underground transport and

housing innovation. It’s worth noting at this

point that, according to an April 2017 feature

run by the New York Times, the Government

owns 90 percent of all of the land, most of

which is less than 50 feet above sea level;

coastal roads are being raised; and there’s an

almost permanent quest to reclaim land.

So much so that the feature commented

that ‘several countries have tired of feeding

Singapore’s endless appetite for sand;

Indonesia, Malaysia and, most recently,

Cambodia have halted exports altogether.’

It follows then that waste material from

projects is recycled – most recently spoil from

underground tunnels.

The New York Times lays bare Singapore’s

efforts in land reclamation: ‘Since it became an

independent nation, Singapore has, through

land reclamation, grown in size by almost a

quarter: to 277 square miles from 224. By 2030,

the Government wants Singapore to measure

nearly 300 square miles.’

Article to be concluded in the May issue.

Adam Bernstein is a freelance business writer.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 25



In the world of AML, COVID-19 and Brexit

may prompt a drive to electronic verification.

AUTHOR – John Dobson

AS the global Coronavirus crisis started

to take hold during the first quarter

of 2020, many of the processes and

procedures involved in a property

purchase suddenly became obsolete.

Nowhere was this more so than in

the key area of ID verification and customer onboarding

to guard against the threat of money laundering and

financial crime – for which the housing market is a

prime target. And one of the biggest issues to come

out of it for the sector was the need to switch from

manual methods of verification to a more secure digital



The potential for increased criminal activity in light of

the gaps in security that opened up as a result of the

lockdown order to work from home, was clear to those

in the anti-money laundering (AML) sector. Through

a series of recent webinars, the Financial Action

Task Force (FATF), the global money laundering and

terrorist financing watchdog, highlighted that the crisis

introduced new opportunities as a result of the national


One of the biggest changes in customer onboarding

was switching from presenting at an office with ID to

prove who they were, to having to scan documents and

email them along with a selfie photo.

This created a huge opportunity for fraud as it is

much easier to falsify a scanned passport with the use of

photo editing software, than it is to create a physical false

passport. And the requirement for social distancing and

staying at home meant it was not possible to compare

documents with a person presenting themselves.

As the restriction on house viewings was lifted and

the Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) holiday introduced to

kickstart the housing market, demand in the property

sector through the summer reached unprecedented

levels – along with the prospect of further attempts at

money laundering and financial fraud.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 26


AUTHOR – John Dobson


Manual checks for ID verification have long

been viewed as outdated and ineffectual when

it comes to preventing fraud. The onset of the

Coronavirus, therefore, and overnight changes

to how business operated amplified calls

already being made for regulated businesses

operating in the property market to shift to

electronic verification.

In fact, it was a call backed by FATF as

electronic checks using credit reporting data

will bring to light any discrepancies in a

client’s personal history and clearly flag up

where further action is required.

In addition, advances in facial recognition

software came to the fore. Without being able

to see the person face-to-face, this was a key

development in giving businesses that crucial

extra reassurance that the person they are

dealing with is on the level.

There is also a groundswell of opinion

emerging for a whole new approach to digital

ID, looking at the use of technology such as

Blockchain in order to create one indelible

record of an individual’s true identity.

While this has some merit, and the

intentions are all good, it would probably

be more practical to put the onus of

verifying ID on the key parties involved in a

housing transaction, such as estate agents,

conveyancers, etc. Because, would an

individual invest the time needed to keep the

record up to date, when they only move house

every few years?


However, one of the biggest changes in this

area which should prompt a wholesale shift

towards electronic verification has actually

come from the Government as a result of


As part of the legislation governing our

departure from the EU, the Money Laundering

and Terrorist Financing (Amendment) (EU

Exit) Regulations 2020 has now clarified the

position on electronic verification. It is clear

in stipulating that electronic verification

should be used, enabling businesses to move

away from manual, document-based checks.

In addition, the Legal Sector Affinity Group

(LSAG) announced the results of its extensive

revision of anti-money laundering guidance

earlier this year. In this they refer to the

Brexit legislation which again is a welcome

move in terms of bringing the legal sector up

to date with the latest technological solutions.

In essence what this legislation does is

confirm there is no longer any need to collect

passports, driving licences and those kinds of

documents to verify ID. For the vast majority

of every day, legal work and conveyancing all

that is required for ID verification is a name,

address and a date of birth (optional).

An online verification platform runs the

details through a global data search to bring

back results for an individual in less than two

seconds, and for a business in about three


What we urgently need to move away from,

and this Brexit legislation allows us to do it,

are practices such as asking new customers to

send a photo of themselves with their passport

in hand open at their photo page.

Electronic verification ensures compliance

with Know Your Customer (KYC) and Know

Your Business (KYB) legislation without

having to handle a single document. It is also

less intrusive, as well as being 100 percent

COVID-secure because you don’t need to

meet face-to-face. We are not only entering a

new era of life outside of the EU but also a new

era of electronic verification, and this is the

year to make the switch.


One of the reasons why fraudsters and

criminal gangs have found it so easy to work

the system is a lack of resources to combat it

at a government level.

The Chancellor has now announced a

£100m investment in a new fraud taskforce

and more than 1,000 new investigators. This

is a positive move which may go some way

to recouping the £billions which have been

lost to fraud over the past 12 months of the

coronavirus crisis.

There’s no doubt that extra resources are

much in need, particularly as the chancellor

has also announced a new Restart fund for

businesses to replace the Bounce Back loans,

which was wide open to fraud and lost more

than £20bn in fraudulent claims.

But it’s also vital that a significant amount

of that £100m investment goes into the systems

used by HMRC to find those responsible for


Without the use of the latest digital platforms

to run ID checks and verify information on a

global scale, these investigators will simply be

left in the dark.

John Dobson is CEO of SmartSearch UK

John Dobson

One of the biggest changes in customer onboarding was

switching from presenting at an office with ID to prove who they

were, to having to scan documents and email them along with a

selfie photo.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 27



OpenBordersDirect is helping smaller

businesses manage the risk of conducting

international trade.

AUTHOR – Lesley Batchelor OBE, FCICM

Lesley Batchelor



takes the user

on a journey that

allows them to steer

their own course;

navigating the site

using easy-to-select

process categories

and clicking to read

more, or to access the

tools that sit behind

the sections.

FRESH back from a trip

from the Philippines,

Liam Fox, then Secretary

for State Department for

International Trade, asked,

‘Why don’t more businesses

export to the Philippines, indeed all the

emerging markets?’

At the time I wanted to explain in a

60-second sound bite why they don’t,

but instead I settled for the simple ‘It’s

mainly the risk that stops them.’ That was

2017 and time has moved on. The need

to help SMEs extend and become less

risk adverse, or at least more risk aware,

has become apparent. Exploring areas

of risk within the contracts and terms

and conditions that companies offer

highlights many examples of the use of

the wrong ICC Incoterm2020, and the

resultant problems, uncertainty and loss

of profit they can cause.

Whilst working on the last issue, I

met Mark Heath, ex AIG and insurance

expert. He was also exploring how

mistakes could be avoided, and how to

create a truly innovative digitised version

of Incoterms2020, to help businesses

understand which obligations sit with

each of the 11 incoterms.

Mark and I soon realised that working

with the ICC Incoterms alone wasn’t

going to help businesses to understand

their risk exposure, and the idea of a

single platform, carrying all the possible

risks and offering mitigation and

solutions to many of them, was needed.

OpenBordersDirect is a brand-new

platform that allows SMEs a safe place

to explore and understand the risks they

face in international trade.


OpenBordersDirect takes the user on a

journey that allows them to steer their

own course; navigating the site using easyto-select

process categories and clicking

to read more, or to access the tools that

sit behind the sections. This way the user

only activates the parts of the site that they

need but can check themselves by looking

at a ‘Risk-Report’ that will highlight any

gaps in the mitigation or coverage of their

individual risk management. This is ideal

for a business to use as part of their risk

register at board level or with their banks.

Understanding the risks your business

is exposed to is a fundamental part of

making a profit. It becomes increasingly

difficult when trading internationally as

everything takes longer. Although some

say three times longer, this is dependent

on the market, product and carrier


The platform now also boasts

ecosystem partners who offer brilliant,

innovative solutions specifically

designed to help smaller businesses trade

effectively – and, most importantly, make

a profit.

OBD is a subscription service which

offers a package of support including

Due Diligence reports on KYC and PEPs,

a fully digitised ICC Incoterms2020 tool,

discounts on Virtual FX Bank accounts,

single invoice insurance and finally, an

alternative to Letters of Credit. Each

partner has been chosen as part of the

ecosystem as they bring a new tool to help

cash flow and to fund international trade.

There are many more partners waiting

to sign up including risk reports on cyber

issues, and tracking devices linked to

activate an insurance policy and ensure

the safety of goods as they travel around

the world. It is an exciting time to be in

international trade as we look to grow the

UK economy and take UK goods into more

exotic markets. Open Borders Direct aims

to make that easier by helping smaller

businesses manage those risks.

Visit and subscribe

with a month’s free trial or as a

member of the Chartered Institute of

Credit Management click on the trade association

button, click on CICM and take

advantage of a three-month free trial

available to our advisory board member


Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 28



In the first in a new series, Lesley Batchelor OBE FCICM,

guides readers through the import/export maze.

We start with Freeports.

AUTHOR – Lesley Batchelor OBE, FCICM

THE Government has now

announced eight new

Freeports which sounds like

good news, but what does

that mean and how can

businesses take advantage

of this news?

One of the key components of a Freeport

is that any business set-up within the

confines of the Freeport will benefit from

simplified customs procedures aligned to

tariff and tax exemptions. This means, if

you’re a manufacturer who imports raw

materials from anywhere in the world,

instead of paying the import duty on

these materials you would bring them

to the UK into the freeport or freeport

zone without paying duty on them. The

factory or process plant would sit in that

zone. This delays payment of duties liable

until the goods are processed and either

released into free circulation within the

UK or exported to another market. This

enhances your company’s cash flow

and makes the goods clearance simpler,

in turn making purchasing and supply

chains easier to manage. The same effect

can be produced by using customs or

bonded warehousing facilities, although

there are often other financial incentives

to entice the development of hubs geared

to international trade.

Seven freeports existed in the

UK between 1984 and 2012 but they

were disbanded under the coalition

Government. The need for free circulation

in the EU is limited as goods move freely

from member states anyway, and as such

this type of support is usually given to

Less Developed Countries – although the

EU does have 80 free trade zones across

21 member states, including 24 in the UK.

In developing these new freeport/trade

zones it should be noted that EU State Aid

and WTO rules still need to be adhered to.

Circumstances have definitely changed

since the EU exit, as UK manufacturers

face increased paperwork, and Freeports

might reduce some of this pressure on the



Manufacturing in the UK contributes 11

percent GDP and represents 44 percent

of UK exports, in addition to supporting

thousands of well-paid jobs directly and

indirectly through their secondary and

tertiary supply chains. The next step

will be the integration of Freeports, with

the recently announced ‘multi-purpose

inland custom facilities’ that have been

designed to manage freight and handle

goods coming into the UK.

The big question is who will use

Freeports? Large manufacturers will

think twice before moving plant and

manufacturing facilities with thousands

of jobs to a new site, even if it enables them

to take advantage of the freeport status.

The shape of business administration

since COVID has also changed, with

many people wanting to continue to work

from home, commuting less, making the

physical location of a manufacturer a

smaller consideration than in the past.

Enterprise Zones have not always

met expectations in terms of job

creation either, but they do succeed

in creating lower skilled work. The

challenge of the mobility of

higher skilled workers remains

an issue, especially when

moving away from

the capital and into

‘one job’ cities; the cost of moving a family

and its support circle is hard to quantify.

UK businesses trading globally currently

may feel the new Freeports/Free-zones

will attract new investment, make it easier

to manage the supply chain and certainly

support the UK logistics and warehousing

industry moving forward.

Where does the UK sit within these

agreements, and how can we find our

role outside the EU? As the Government

looks to carve out a new International

Trade Strategy that will integrate with

the Industrial, Education and Digital

Strategies and move the UK forward

towards a brave new world, these are key

questions that need answering soon.

Lesley Batchelor OBE, FCICM

COO & Commercial Director at

Open Borders Direct.


Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 29



Monthly round-up of the latest stories

in global trade by Andrea Kirkby.

Lack of containers drives

shipping costs to new high

AS if you needed telling…Xchange, which

tracks container movements worldwide,

has reported that the average cost of

shipping a standard container has risen by

20 percent in recent months to more than

$4,000, extending a rise that began in mid-


Shortages in Shanghai and elsewhere

in China has forced prices up to the point

that average shipping rates between east

Asia and northern Europe are up nearly 40

percent this year, and at nearly $8,000 are

close to double the global average.

The problem is a function of coronavirus

trade disruption which left some ports,

especially in Europe and the US, with too

many containers while there were too few

elsewhere; the surplus saw containers

stacked at the ports or sent inland to

off-port depots. Then the global recovery

– in parts – came along and made a bad

situation worse.

The point is that exporters should, if they

haven’t already, factor in rising shipping

costs and set customer expectations for

delivery times accordingly.


IT was bound to happen eventually but Cuba,

the communist outpost just 90 miles from the

land of the free, has announced it is to allow

private businesses to operate in most sectors

as part of a major reform of its state-controlled


Allowable activities for private businesses

have been expanded from 127 to more than

2,000 and only a small number of sectors are

to be reserved for the state. The driver for

change was clearly economic, as the country

has been badly affected by the pandemic and

US sanctions introduced by former President

Trump. Its economy fell by 11 percent last

year, it’s worst performance in nearly 30

years. Apart from countless numbers of small

farms, Cuba’s private sector is presently made

up of artisans, taxi drivers and tradesmen.

Many are also involved in tourism which has

been hard hit by the pandemic and sanctions.

Even though President Biden has

suggested that the wants to improve relations

with the country, change happens slowly in

Cuba so don’t expect a rapid opening Look

now at the visa application process

as those who get there first may find

the richest pickings.


The Government has applied for

membership of the Comprehensive

and Progressive Agreement for Trans-

Pacific Partnership – CPTPP – a market

of around 500m people based on a free

trade area with 11 Asian and Pacific


CPTPP members include Australia,

Canada, Japan and New Zealand as

well as Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, Mexico,

Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.

Granted the market is harder to

access compared to the EU, but it’s not

hard to see evidence of how that part

of the world is set for growth. Naturally,

being a member will help its members

sell to the UK, but the opposite is also

true, and tariffs should drop on UK

exports such as whisky and cars, as

well as service industries.

The effect of membership in the

short term might be muted as the

UK already has trade deals in place

with several CPTPP members and is

negotiating with Australia and New

Zealand. But where this gets interesting

is if the US joins the CPTPP. Former

President Trump removed the US from

the negotiations, but President Biden

may well take a different line. And if

that happens, the UK wouldn’t need a

separate trade deal to access the US

market on better trade terms.

It’s time to pray coronavirus is put

back in its box and that overseas travel

is soon allowed again.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 30

THE African Continental Free Trade

Agreement is now up and running and

along with the agreement, ‘favourable

demographics, improving governance and

a growing technology sector also bode

well for the continent,’ says MoneyWeek.

Africa’s economic development has

often been compared to that of other

continents because it has consistently

failed to get to grip with free trade.

According to the World Bank, average

tariffs in the UK and US are 1.6 percent

and 1.7 percent respectively. In contrast,

South Africa charges an average of

4.3 percent, Nigeria 8.5 percent and

Kenya 10.1 percent. ‘As a result,’ says the

publication, ‘total trade accounts for 64


NOW here’s an interesting view. Louis Gave,

CEO of GaveKal, an independent research,

fund management and data analysis firm,

in an interview with on why

inflation will return, made a very distinct

observation – that firms should be careful

of their supply chain.

Says Gave: "We’re in a new world... where

supply chains are broken up along the lines

of separate empires. Over the past two

years, the US has done everything it could

to kill Huawei. It's done so by cutting off the

semiconductor supply chain to Huawei.”

He added that: “every Chinese

company today is worried about being

the next Huawei... in every industry. Until

recently, price and quality were the (key)

considerations in any corporate supply

chain. of delivery matters

most, even if the cost is higher. This is a

dramatic paradigm shift... It adds up to a



THE government has put in place a £20m

Brexit support package to help firms

cope with (more) changes to trade rules

with the European Union. The money is

designed to help firms prepare for the

implementation of new import controls

which come into force from April and


Those that trade only with the EU,

so are new to importing and exporting,

ought to apply for the grants of up

to £2,000 for each trader to pay for

practical support including training and

professional advice.

percent of UK GDP… but is worth only a

third of GDP in Kenya, South Africa and


Union Investment, one of Germany’s

largest asset managers, thinks that

lowering tariff barriers should tackle one

of the continent’s main problems – ‘the

low level of intra-African trade.’

And lower tariffs, freer movement,

and a relatively young population

with a median age of only 20 (half

that of the UK), and the rise of virtual

working should, says Union Investment,

‘significantly boost Africa’s long-term

growth’. Africa ought to be on the top of

any exporter’s list now that the UK is now

fully out of Europe.

huge hit to productivity.”

Gave continues to say that productivity

is under attack from regulation, from ESG

(environmental, social and governance)

investors, and now also security

considerations. He’s of the view that this

would not be inflationary if central banks

acted with restraint. “But of course,” he

says, “we know that they are printing

money like never before.”

The fund will be administered through

the pre-existing Customs Grant Scheme

and opened for applications in March.

While welcome, Make UK, a

manufacturers’ organisation, is still

worried by EU/UK impediments. It said:

‘…there remains an urgent need for the

government to sit down with the EU and

address the bottlenecks and red tape

which still remain, and which are adding

substantial costs to doing business.

These are more than teething troubles

which, if not addressed, threaten to

become permanent structural barriers.’



SOUTHAMPTON-based hovercraft

manufacturer Griffon Hoverwork Ltd has

delivered two of its new 995ED craft to

clients in Hong Kong and Estonia. One of

the two eight-metre-long craft was sent

to the Hong Kong Marine Police and the

other to the Estonian Border Guard. So

far, seven of these hovercraft have been

built and sold since it was launched

at the ExpoNaval trade fair in Chile in

2018. Other clients have included the

Malaysia Marine Department and private

customers. The 995ED isn’t cheap – entry

price starts around £650,000 with plenty

of options and has capacity for eight

people or up to four stretchers or any

combination up to a maximum payload of

just under a tonne. Top speed is 30 knots

at full ‘all up weight’.

The company says that it has

hovercraft in all five continents and

supports over 200 GHL machines in more

than 40 countries.



BLOOMBERG reports that South Korea

should bounce back strongly to prepandemic

levels in the first half of 2021,

giving it one of the best recoveries among

major economies.

As President Moon Jae-in has

previously stated, the country ‘managed

to minimise the economic damage of

COVID-19’ in 2020, and the country ended

the year with a tiny one percent fall in

GDP. On top of that are four government

rescue packages that limited the damage

from a slump in household spending.

The Bank of Korea expects the economy

to grow three percent this year as the

construction industry expands on the

back of government plans to increase

housing. Meanwhile compare South

Korea’s position to that of other large

economies – the world’s 10 biggest

economies shrank by between three

percent and 10 percent in 2020.



OR CALL 020 7738 0777

Currency UK is authorised and regulated

by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).


GBP/EUR 1.16879 1.14683 Up

GBP/USD 1.41443 1.38153 Flat

GBP/CHF 1.29575 1.23819 Up

GBP/AUD 1.80844 1.77576 Up

GBP/CAD 1.77854 1.72659 Down

GBP/JPY 1 52.051 146.623 Up

This data was taken on 17 March and refers to the month

previous to/leading up to 16 March 2021.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 31


Performance Indicators

Karen Savage and Paula Swain answer

this month's question.

How should

I assess the


of a third-party


agency or



Karen Savage FCICM

PERHAPS the best way of

answering this question is

to look at our own model

and the lessons that can be

learned from it in terms of

how ‘effective’ a third-party

can and should be.

We have a panel of six DCAs and three

law firms. Managing their performance

requires a robust Supplier Assurance

Framework. The Assurance Framework

seeks oversight and assurance over

each servicer firms’ general governance

and control framework, adherence to

regulatory requirements, customer

treatment and evidence of satisfactory

recruitment, training and competency

frameworks. Ongoing Quality Assurance

checking are also conducted on a regular


Azzurro Associates has an independent

second line Risk & Compliance Team. The

Head of Risk & Compliance is responsible

for the compliance monitoring plan,

complaints handling and the monthly

QA framework over our suppliers. Each

customer-facing supplier goes through a

Due Diligence process, an annual review

of policies and a monthly oversight

process. The monthly oversight includes

anything up to 50 customer telephone

calls and file reviews per supplier. These

are marked against industry best practice,

regulatory requirements and our own suite

of policies. (Once lockdown restrictions

in the UK have been lifted, the Risk &

Compliance Team will recommence visits

to each supplier to conduct a full audit.)

Over the last 12 months, weekly virtual

meetings with suppliers have been ‘the

norm’, to discuss and assess collections

performance, accounts that are on ‘hold’

as a result of COVID, and or agreed strategy

as regards litigation and use of the courts.

Both the FCA and the CSA provided regular

updates on generic operational issues and

best practice, which were also used as a

benchmark for third-party performance.

What we looked for (and still look for) in

particular includes:

• The ability to provide timely, accurate

reporting in line with our monthly

reporting requirements. All transactions

(whether cash or non-cash) should be

coded correctly enabling straightforward

balance reconciliation. Periodic audit of

the data transmission should highlight few

if any errors.

• A review of a sample of accounts placed

with the servicer should indicate multiple

attempts to contact the customer through

the various channels available to the

servicer (phone, letter, email, SMS etc).

Further contact with the customer should

reflect the preferred communication

channel agreed with that customer.

• The servicer should proactively suggest

changes in strategy based on information

gleaned by the Contact Centre. The

recommendations should highlight the

cost/benefit of such a strategy change.

• The servicer should, where possible,

enable the customer to use self-serve

processes to manage their debt position.

Such online tools should offer a suite of

payment plan and settlement options,

ensuring all forbearance tools and

affordability guidelines are adhered to.

• Running a benchmark strategy

introduces an element of competition

to the servicing strategy between two or

more service providers. The key criteria

to ensure an effective benchmark process


The debt placed is randomly allocated –

with a check of credit quality characteristics

to ensure no pool is substantially different;

The timeframe of measurement

must discourage an acceleration of the

collection process by the Servicers, and

thus create artificial unsustainable results;

The benchmark pools must be of

sufficient size to support consistent efforts

by the servicers;

One should consider a hybrid activity

and contingent commission rate model,

to ensure each servicer is appropriately

compensated for their efforts, thus

ensuring a level playing field.

Close oversight during the Pandemic

– and beyond – should ensure collection

volumes remain stable, whatever the



Chief Operating Officer and Solicitor at Azzurro Associates.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 32


Start with a review and

development of your credit

control processes around query

management and escalation for

outsourcing for legal support.

If your team hasn’t outsourced

before, or their experience is

limited, then this will help build



Paula Swain


Partner. National Head of Commercial Recoveries.

SPECIALIST recoveries lawyers should offer you so

much more than litigation, even if that is their daily


If you take Shoosmiths as an example, our service

can start with a review and development of your credit

control processes around query management and

escalation for outsourcing for legal support. If your team hasn’t

outsourced before, or their experience is limited, then this will

help build knowledge about the escalation process and build trust

between client and lawyer. It’s a great way to start an important


Where your team is more experienced or you have wider

resource, you might still benefit from a triage service. This

provides you with a fixed cost case review for those hard to crack

or more complex cases. Our advice will help you to choose a

strategy for resolving the case.

It’s not all about litigation either, we can help with a pre-legal

collections lettering and telephone service. Receiving a letter

from a law firm can often be enough to prompt engagement and

resolution. The right choice of lawyer will provide you with the

best range of services to suit your business and your team.

The size of your case load for outsourcing is also a relevant

consideration. Can your proposed legal partner support you in

the way you need? Do they have the resource and system to cope

with managing a large supply of cases from you? Will they be

able to provide access to their system to enable your team to selfservice

updates? Will they be able to provide reports in a format

which helps your own internal reporting needs?

For those with smaller case-loads, will you have the opportunity

to build a relationship with your dedicated service team? Being

passed from pillar to post can be a frustrating experience, so it

will help if you can have a main point of contact looking after

your relationship. Ask how the lawyer will onboard your work

and manage your relationship. This will give you an insight into

how the relationship is likely to develop.

Is industry knowledge relevant for your choice? If so, ask about

the lawyer’s experience, and ask for case studies. This will show

you that they are likely to quickly understand your business and

your commercial objectives. If your business has customers

across the UK, then ask how your lawyer will support you with

cases in all four jurisdictions. Would you prefer a national firm

with a joined up team across the UK, or a firm based in one of the

jurisdictions referring your work out to a separate law firm in the

relevant jurisdiction? Last, but not least, lead with rapport. Can

you work closely with your chosen team, and do you feel that they

will become a trusted adviser?

If you’d like to join our panel of experts, or

if you have a question to ask, contact the

editor at

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 33



British Credit

Awards 2021





Congratulations to all for

your constant endeavour

IN its 82-year history, the CICM has come through a great many

challenges, not least of which was a world war. In more recent

times we have been going through another battle, perhaps

not quite so catastrophic, but certainly global, and most likely

the biggest challenge that many of us will have faced in our

working lives. It is remarkable, then, that not only are we now

emerging through the other side, but that we also have something to

celebrate. Because through adversity often comes inspiration, and these

awards are a celebration of all that is good about our brilliant profession

and our brilliant people. To the winners, many congratulations and

thank you for leading the way. To the highly commended and indeed to

all of those shortlisted, be consoled by the company you keep, and your

continued endeavour – in the words of Tennyson – to strive, to seek, to

find, and not to yield.

Sue Chapple FCICM

Chief Executive


Steve Allinson – Allinsonlaw Limited

Gail Armstrong MCICM – Siemens

Michelle Atkinson FCICM – United Utilities

Liz Bingham – R3

Sue Chapple FCICM – CICM

Leanne Chesterman – BAE Systems

Brendan Clarkson FCICM – Begbies Traynor

Steven Coppard MCICM – Cabinet Office

Sean Feast FCICM – Gravity Global

Nigel Fields FCICM – NBC Universal International

Philip King FCICM – Dept for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy

Philip Roberts FCICM – Clarke Willmott

Natalie Ross – American Express

Paula Swain – Shoosmiths

Karen Young – Hays

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2020 / PAGE 35


continues on page 36 >


Apprentice of the Year Award


Alicja Gracjasz

Valor Hospitality Europe Limited

Judges' comment: Alicja is a real credit to her profession

and has shown extraordinary resilience and maturity through

an extremely difficult period. Despite being furloughed,

made redundant and then re-hired, her professionalism and

enthusiasm have shone through.

Presenter: Gail Armstrong MCICM, Head of Invoice to

Cash GB & Ireland at Siemens

Thank you! Appreciation Award


Emma Tudor-Pratley ACICM

The Adecco Group UK & Ireland

Sponsored by

Judges' comment: Emma has been a real lynch pin during

these challenging times, and her kind heart and helpful

manner has been appreciated by all of her colleagues.


Chris Sanders FCICM, Sanders Consulting Associates,

Haylie Heather, npower Business Solutions

Joanne Rhodes, The Adecco Group UK & Ireland

Octav Carlescu, Credit Assist

Presenter: Tom Dodd-Noble, CEO Data Interconnect

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 36


Shooting Star Award


Lisa-Marie Schorah


Sponsored by



Judges' comment: Lisa-Marie shows what can be achieved

when those in the early stages of their career are given the right

encouragement and support, and how they can develop into the

shooting stars of tomorrow.


Inga Schibsted, Chaser

Emma Carruthers, RS Components

Ethan Harrison, The Very Group

Presenter: Charlotte Turner, Director at Porfolio

Cool Under Pressure Award


Kieran Reid

The Adecco Group UK & Ireland

Judges' comment: The judges were impressed by Kieran’s

commitment to setting and achieving his own personal targets

as well as those imposed by the business. He has enjoyed an

amazing year with unprecedented results.


Aurangzaib Chawla, Lanop Accountants

Virginija Tesarcik, RS Components

Presenter: Phil Roberts FCICM, Partner at Clarke Wilmott LLP

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 37 continues on page 38 >


Diversity & Inclusion Award


Marston Holdings

Judges' comment: Marstons is very focused on moving with

the times and sets high expectations in its people and working

practices. The standards of excellence it has demonstrated in

diversity and inclusion are of the highest order.

Presenter: Debbie Nolan FCICM, CICM Chair and Vice President of

Collections UK at Avarto

Duct Tape Award


Claire Rigby

Wex Euroupe (Services) Ltd

Judges' comment: Claire is capable of a variety of fixes,

supporting individuals and the business, in big ways and small.

If ever there was a Mrs Fixit, it’s Claire!


Chris Williams, Royal Mail - Octav Carlescu, Credit Assist - Simon Quigley

The Adecco Group UK & Ireland - Steve Ewen, RS Components.

Presenter: Michelle Atkinson, Head of Income

Customer Services for United Utilities

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 38


Credit Team of the Year Award


London School of Economics

Judges' comment: This entry showed a team that fully

understood the benefits of transparency, flexibility and

knowledge sharing, as well as having a deep understanding of

debt resolution. The team is forward thinking and has its eyes

firmly fixed on the future.

Tarmac Trading Ltd

Sponsored by

Judges' comment: A standout performance demonstrating

transformative change and strong results. The team has

delivered great results in extremely difficult circumstances and

in a challenging sector.


AR Team - BAE Systems, Arvato Financial Solutions, Ascent Performance

Group Limited, Imperial College London, Royal Mail, Scottish Water Business

Stream, Tenth Revolution Group, The Adecco Group UK & Ireland

Presenter: Andrew Bass, Senior Business Development Executive Visma Onguard

Credit Professional of the Year Award


Sponsored by

Debbie Matthews MCICM (GRAD)

The Adecco Group UK & Ireland

Judges' comment: Debbie's influence goes far beyond her day

job and has positively impacted her direct reports, their direct

reports, and clients struggling through COVID-19 restrictions.

The Judges see Debbie as real leader and role model showing

exceptional commitment to her team and the business.


Caitlin Guy-Holt, Wex Europe (Services) Ltd - Gillian Johnston MCICM

RS Components - Kayleigh Bagnall, Wex Europe (Services) Ltd - Natalie

Tate, Just - Nicholas Brierley, University of Central Lancashire - Nicos

Ioannou FCICM, Infocredit Group Limited - Oliver Slimm Dudley, Building

Society - Vinod Kerai ACICM, Chesterton Global Limited.

Presenter: Kabir Gulabkhan, Manager at Hays Credit Management

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 39 continues on page 40 >


CICMQ High Performance Team of the Year



Judges' comment: Tarmac has all of the attributes of a high

performing team that is extremely motivated and engaged.

The team clearly work closely with all stakeholders throughout

the business and have a very clear idea of what they want to

achieve, whilst sharing their experiences in credit management

to help other organisations in the CICM Best Practice Network.

Presenter: Chris Sanders FCICM, Head of CICMQ Accreditation

Sir Roger Cork Prize


Ben Holdsworth ACICM

Judges' comment: This award is presented to the 2020

candidate who achieved the highest aggregate marks across

all the core examined units.

Presenter: Debbie Tuckwood, CICM’s Chief Advisor for Professional Development

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 40

CSA Apprenticeships

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Provider specialising in

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team of financial services, risk

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t: 0191 217 3073

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 41


A Little Ray of Light?

The latest payment performance statistics

show some signs of improvement.

AUTHOR – Rob Howard

LAST month’s late payment statistics

painted an increasingly worrying

picture. The latest figures, however,

show some signs of improvement

across the board to lift, at least

temporarily, some of the doom and

gloom caused by the pandemic. The average Days

Beyond Terms (DBT) across regions and sectors

reduced by 2.8 and 2.7 days respectively.


The sector standings provide some room for

optimism, with 16 of the 22 sectors managing to

reduce their payment terms.

The Business from Home and Agriculture,

Forestry and Fishing sectors are the biggest

movers, with reductions of 9.3 and 9.2 days

respectively. Elsewhere, the Construction (-8.1

days), Energy Supply (-6.5 days) and Mining

and Quarrying (-5.2 days) also made significant

improvements. A reduction of 3.2 days means

that the Public Administration sector just pips

Health & Social to top spot in the standings with

an overall DBT of 10.2 days.

Unsurprisingly, Hospitality continues to suffer

more than any other sector, a further increase of

7.6 days means its overall DBT is now a staggering

43.3 days. Hotel, restaurant and café owners to

name but a few are all desperately counting down

to the lifting of restrictions which will allow them

to open their doors once again.

From a regional perspective,

things also look a little brighter,

with 10 of the 11 regions moving

in the right direction and making

reductions to payment terms.

The only increase came from

Northern Ireland (+0.2 days),

albeit a very marginal one.


From a regional perspective, things also look a

little brighter, with 10 of the 11 regions moving

in the right direction and making reductions

to payment terms. The only increase came

from Northern Ireland (+0.2 days), albeit a very

marginal one.

East Anglia and East Midlands,

previously the two worst performing

regions, made the biggest

improvement, with a reduction

of 6.1 days and 5.3 days

respectively to payment

terms. A reduction of 4.9

days means that Yorkshire

and Humberside is now

the best performing region

with an overall DBT of 15.2 days.

By Rob Howard

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 42


Data supplied by the Creditsafe Group

Top Five Prompter Payers

Region Feb 21 Change from Jan 21

Yorkshire and Humberside 15.2 -4.9

North West 16.2 -4.6

Northern Ireland 17.3 0.2

West Midlands 17.3 -2.1

Scotland 17.8 -1.5

Bottom Five Poorest Payers

Region Feb 21 Change from Jan 21

Wales 20.4 -1.5

East Midlands 19.4 -5.3

East Anglia 19.3 -6.1

South West 19.3 -2.5

South East 18.6 -1.9

Top Five Prompter Payers

Sector Feb 21 Change from Jan 21

Public Administration 10.2 -3.2

Health & Social 10.7 -1.3

Water and Waste 11.7 -3.9

Manufacturing 12.4 -4.9

Wholesale and retail trade 13 -0.8

Bottom Five Poorest Payers

Sector Feb 21 Change from Jan 21

Hospitality 43.3 7.6

Business from Home 25.5 -9.3

Real Estate 24.9 -3.3

Financial and Insurance 22.3 -4.8

Entertainment 19.6 0.1

Getting Worse

Hospitality 7.6

Education 4.2

International Bodies 1.3

Other Service 1.2

IT and Comms 0.8

Entertainment 0.1

Getting Better

Business from Home -9.3

Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing -9.2

Construction -8.1

Energy Supply -6.5

Mining and Quarrying -5.2

Dormant -5.1

Manufacturing -4.9

Financial and Insurance -4.8

Professional and Scientific -4.8

Water and Waste -3.9

Business Admin & Support -3.5

Real Estate -3.3

Public Administration -3.2

Health & Social -1.3


-1.5 DBT

Wholesale and retail trade 0.8

Transportation and Storage 0.7



0.2 DBT



-2.5 DBT


-1.5 DBT



-4.6 DBT



-2.1 DBT



-4.9 DBT



-5.3 DBT


-0.5 DBT



-1.9 DBT



-6.1 DBT


Getting Better – Getting Worse












East Anglia

East Midlands

Yorkshire and Humberside

North West

South West

West Midlands

South East




Northern Ireland

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 43



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more information on this, or to see how the Menzies

Creditor Services team can assist you, please


T: +44 (0)2073 875 868 - London

T: +44 (0)2920 495 444 - Cardiff


Tinubu Square is a trusted source of trade credit

intelligence for credit insurers and for corporate

customers. The company’s B2B Credit Risk

Intelligence solutions include the Tinubu Risk

Management Center, a cloud-based SaaS platform;

the Tinubu Credit Intelligence service and the

Tinubu Risk Analyst advisory service. Over 250

companies rely on Tinubu Square to protect their

greatest assets: customer receivables.

T: +44 (0)207 469 2577 /



Building on our mature and hugely successful

product and world class support service, we are

re-imagining our risk awareness module in 2019 to

allow for hugely flexible automated worklists and

advanced visibility of areas of risk. Alongside full

integration with all credit scoring agencies (e.g.

Creditsafe), this makes Credica a single port-of-call

for analysis and automation. Impressive results

and ROI are inevitable for our customers that also

have an active input into our product development

and evolution.

T: 01235 856400



Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 44

Each of our Corporate Partners is carefully selected for

their commitment to the profession, best practice in the

Credit Industry and the quality of services they provide.

We are delighted to showcase them here.


Hays Credit Management is a national specialist

division dedicated exclusively to the recruitment of

credit management and receivables professionals,

at all levels, in the public and private sectors. As

the CICM’s only Premium Corporate Partner, we

are best placed to help all clients’ and candidates’

recruitment needs as well providing guidance on

CV writing, career advice, salary bench-marking,

marketing of vacancies, advertising and campaign

led recruitment, competency-based interviewing,

career and recruitment trends.

T: 07834 260029



The Atradius Collections business model is to support

businesses and their recoveries. We are seeing a

deterioration and increase in unpaid invoices placing

pressures on cashflow for those businesses. Brexit is

causing uncertainty and we are seeing a significant

impact on the UK economy with an increase in

insolvencies, now also impacting the continent and

spreading. Our geographical presence is expanding

and with a single IT platform across the globe we can

provide greater efficiencies and effectiveness to our

clients to recover their unpaid invoices.

T: +44 (0)2920 824700


Shoosmiths’ highly experienced team will work

closely with credit teams to recover commercial

debts as quickly and cost effectively as possible.

We have an in depth knowledge of all areas of debt

recovery, including:

• Pre-litigation services to effect early recovery and

keep costs down • Litigation service • Insolvency

• Post-litigation services including enforcement

As a client of Shoosmiths, you will find us quick to

relate to your goals, and adept at advising you on the

most effective way of achieving them.

T: 03700 86 3000



Forums International has been running Credit and

Industry Forums since 1991 covering a range of

industry sectors and international trading. Attendance

is for credit professionals of all levels. Our forums

are not just meetings but communities which

aim to prepare our members for the challenges

ahead. Attending for the first time is free for you to

gauge the benefits and meet the members and we

only have pre-approved Partners, so you will never

intentionally be sold to.

T: +44 (0)1246 555055



Data Interconnect provides ERP-agnostic AR

software. The Corrivo platform transmits invoices

in multiple formats using tax compliant templates

custom-designed for your business. Corrivo expedites

collections, reconciliation and dispute processes with

flexible workflow tools for creating and assigning tasks,

limits, chase paths or stops and a self-service portal

where customers can query, comment, dispute or pay.

Corrivo manages data securely and efficiently so that

you can manage your customers and cashflow better.

T: +44 (0)1367 245777



Serrala optimizes the Universe of Payments for

organisations seeking efficient cash visibility

and secure financial processes. As an SAP

Partner, Serrala supports over 3,500 companies

worldwide. With more than 30 years of experience

and thousands of successful customer projects,

including solutions for the entire order-to-cash

process, Serrala provides credit managers and

receivables professionals with the solutions they

need to successfully protect their business against

credit risk exposure and bad debt loss.

T: +44 118 207 0450



American Express® is a globally recognised

provider of business payment solutions, providing

flexible capabilities to help companies drive

growth. These solutions support buyers and

suppliers across the supply chain with working

capital and cashflow.

By creating an additional lever to help support

supplier/client relationships American Express is

proud to be an innovator in the business payments


T: +44 (0)1273 696933


C2FO turns receivables into cashflow and payables

into income, uniquely connecting buyers and

suppliers to allow discounts in exchange for

early payment of approved invoices. Suppliers

access additional liquidity sources by accelerating

payments from buyers when required in just two

clicks, at a rate that works for them. Buyers, often

corporates with global supply chains, benefit from

the C2FO solution by improving gross margin while

strengthening the financial health of supply chains

through ethical business practices.

T: 07799 692193



Esker’s Accounts Receivable (AR) solution removes

the all-too-common obstacles preventing today’s

businesses from collecting receivables in a

timely manner. From credit management to cash

allocation, Esker automates each step of the orderto-cash

cycle. Esker’s automated AR system helps

companies modernise without replacing their

core billing and collections processes. By simply

automating what should be automated, customers

get the post-sale experience they deserve and your

team gets the tools they need.

T: +44 (0)1332 548176



Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 45




For further information and to discuss the

opportunities of entering into a Corporate

Partnership with the CICM, please contact


“I can proudly display

that I am a member of an

organisation filled with

like-minded professionals

constantly looking forward

on behalf of the industry,

its members and their


Vince Butler MCICM

Onguard is a specialist in credit management

software and a market leader in innovative solutions

for Order to Cash. Our integrated platform ensures

an optimal connection of all processes in the Order

to Cash chain and allows sharing of critical data. Our

intelligent tools can seamlessly interconnect and

offer overview and control of the payment process,

as well as contribute to a sustainable customer relationship.

The Onguard platform is successfully used

for successful credit management in more than 50


T: 020 3868 0947



Bottomline Technologies (NASDAQ: EPAY) helps

businesses pay and get paid. Businesses and banks

rely on Bottomline for domestic and international

payments, effective cash management tools, automated

workflows for payment processing and bill review

and state of the art fraud detection, behavioural

analytics and regulatory compliance. Every day, we

help our customers by making complex business

payments simple, secure and seamless.

T: 0870 081 8250



With 130+ years of experience, Graydon is a leading

provider of business information, analytics, insights

and solutions. Graydon helps its customers to make

fast, accurate decisions, enabling them to minimise

risk and identify fraud as well as optimise opportunities

with their commercial relationships. Graydon

uses 130+ international databases and the information

of 90+ million companies. Graydon has offices in

London, Cardiff, Amsterdam and Antwerp. Since 2016,

Graydon has been part of Atradius, one of the world’s

largest credit insurance companies.

The value of


Vince Butler MCICM

Managing Director,

VTK Investigations Ltd

T: +44 (0)208 515 1400



01780 722900

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 46

The software platform to automate and

optimise your order-to-cash process

Connect your organisation with your customers.

Manage risks and decrease DSO by 20%.

Connecting data. Connecting you.

+44 (0) 20 396 683 24

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 47

Probably thebest debt collection network worldwide

Moneyknows no borders—neither do we

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 48


Virtual Classes

for 2021

Get CICM qualified by attending

Virtual Classes: The best of both worlds.

Home study does not mean you have to study alone. Our ‘gold standard’

distance learning offer, our Virtual Classes have the greatest success

rate of all our packages. Your study will be supported and led by one of

our experienced CICM Tutors via a series of virtual classes and activities,

which are interactive, challenging and fun.










Consumer Collections

Consumer Telephone Collections

Environment – April 19 at 7pm – 9pm

Business Law – April 8 at 7pm – 9pm

Credit Management (Trade, Export & Consumer) – April 19 at 7pm – 9pm

Advanced Credit Risk Management

Compliance with legal, regulatory, ethical and social requirements

Process Improvement

Strategic Planning

Legal Proceedings and Insolvency

Strategic Communications and Leadership

Book your place today, visit

or contact a member of our team on 01780 722900





Best Practice











01780 722900 |

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 50


CICM Virtual Training is an ‘access anywhere’ range of interactive, online training

courses, designed to give you the skills and tools you need to thrive in your credit

work. Each training course offers high quality approaches to credit-related topics, and

practical skills that can be used in your workplace. A highly qualified trainer, with an

array of credit management experience, will guide you through the subject to give you

practical skills, improved results and greater confidence.

These are pre-recorded training

sessions that you can access

anywhere and at anytime. Short,

sharp and to the point – these suit

you if you are short on time, or need

a quick introduction or update on a


These are live, interactive sessions,

delivered virtually by a qualified trainer,

experienced in the subject. Through

a series of tasks and discussions, you

will access a hands-on training session

that offers the best practice approach to

essential credit and debt skills.



Advanced Skills in Collections – April 21 at 11:30am

Collection Skills For The New Future – April 21 at 9.30am

Best Practice Skills To Access Credit Risk – April 21 at 1.30pm

MEET YOUR TRAINER: Jules Eames FCICM(Grad); PGCE, is a qualified teacher,

trainer and credit manager with experience in credit and debt specialisms across the

O2C spectrum and ancillary businesses, in consumer, B2B and export markets.

INTRODUCTORY PRICE £90.00+VAT per person. For group training, please contact

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 51


CICM Redundancy

help and advice

CICM is here to help anyone at risk

of redundancy or looking for work.

We have all the guides and advice

you need to help you back on your feet.





For further details contact: 01780 722900 | |

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 52


Standing out from the crowd

East of England branch

EAST of England Branch virtual

Annual General Meeting on 10

February was opened by two

guest speakers. The first was Paul

Atkinson of FRP Advisory LLP

who updated attendees on the

present insolvency position following a rush of

liquidations and administrations with few CVAs

last Spring, and then Government intervention

on furlough, CBILs, BBLs and subsidised rates.

The Government’s debtor friendly approach

suspended wrongful trading prosecutions

and effectively halted statutory demands and

winding up petitions.

Furlough and CBILs frauds had increased

and a tsunami of business failures was forecast

for Q2 and Q3. He advised credit managers to

use every tool available including keeping a

close eye on debtors' supply chains.

Liam Hastings of Hastings and Co, solicitors,

stressed that risk was not just about granting

credit. It was worth carrying out a risk

assessment on builders who want payment up

front, and he echoed Paul’s advice to keep an

eye on customer’s supply chains. Tips on how

to do this included Google searches, looking

at short trading periods, director’s history and

previously failed companies.

Chairman Atul Vadher reported on a

challenging year, with the pandemic allowing

just one physical event in 2020 – the AGM. The

Branch had adapted quickly, holding five wellattended

webinars with excellent speakers

Pete Whitmore (CICM Chair), Chris Sanders

(CICMQ), Jules Eames (CICM HQ), Chris Parker

The Branch was

proud to have held

CICM’s first Branch

webinar in 2020, the

first 2021 webinar

and the first AGM.

The LinkedIn group

has grown from 210

members to 742

and it is a lively

debating platform.

(Goodman Masson), William Plom and Andrew

Martin (Hays),

The theme had been ‘standing out from

the crowd’ with tips on best practice, the

credit manager’s playbook, collections during

COVID-19, emergency guide to credit, the way

forward post COVID-19, looking for and applying

for jobs, and advice on preparing for interviews.

Feedback was good, with many viewing the

recordings on the CICM website.

The Branch was proud to have held CICM’s

first Branch webinar in 2020, the first 2021

webinar and the first AGM. The LinkedIn group

has grown from 210 members to 742 and it is a

lively debating platform.

A 10-strong Branch Committee was elected

– eight existing members plus Andy Moylan

and Naimesh Khetia. Atul thanked retiring

Committee members Ron Bidwell and Andrew

Martin, and, in particular, Carol Baker, for her

contribution over many years.

Branch Treasurer Mark Maynard reported

that due to the lack of physical events

expenditure was 80 percent lower and no grant

was required for 2021.

Atul Vadher outlined the plans for events

in 2021, which includes more webinars and,

hopefully, physical events from Q3. He closed a

stimulating and enjoyable evening by thanking

our two speakers, CICM HQ for hosting, and

everyone for attending.

Author - Richard Brown, CICM East of England

Branch Vice Chairman

SHEFFIELD & District Branch members

and guests logged into their first ever

virtual branch meeting on 23 February

to attend the Annual General Meeting

(AGM) and hear from recruitment

specialist and guest speaker Matt Civil

of Sharp Consultancy. The attendees

joined the evening meeting with their

own refreshments in hand and Branch

Secretary Myron Fedak opened the

meeting before handing over to Matt.

Matt talked us through how the market

has changed since pre-COVID times

and what he thinks the future will look

like for credit control with more remote

working and location flexibility. He took

us through the on-boarding process of

attracting and retaining the right staff

and how benefits including a CICM study

Attracting the right staff

Sheffield & District branch

support packages can assist. Following a

question and answers session, where the

merits of being interviewed by a robot

were discussed, Matt gave us a snapshot

from a recent Salary Survey looking at

various credit roles.

The meeting was then handed back

to Secretary Myron Fedak who opened

the AGM, and dealt with the formalities

of apologies, approval of the 2020 AGM

Minutes, approval of the 2020 Branch

Financial Report, nominations and

elections of Committee members for 2021

and then a review of the 2020 branch

event and plans for 2021 events. Myron

concluded the AGM with thanking

retiring Branch Treasurer Graham Browes

for his many years of dedicated service

to the branch in a number of committee

roles over the years. Branch Chair, Paula

Uttley, also recorded her personal thanks

to Graham for his many years’ service to

the Branch and said that it had been a

pleasure that her first task as chair in 2018

had been to nominate Graham Browes

and Myron Fedak for Meritorious Service

Awards, which had been awarded and so

very well deserved.

The meeting was then handed back

to Myron and as all official business

had been concluded, the meeting was

closed. Many thanks to Matthew Civil of

Sharp Consultancy for his presentation,

Nicola Harris for tech support and to all

attending members and guests for making

the evening a great success.

Author: Paula Uttley, Branch Chair

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 53



Your CICM lapel badge

demonstrates your commitment to

professionalism and best practice



If you haven’t received your badge


CICM has launched

critical AR Factsheets

for EMEA countries

Powered by

Powered by Baker Ing, country specific factsheets have been

provided for up-to-date information on payment performance,

legislation, and the effects of COVID-19 and Brexit. The

factsheets are designed for credit professionals, and they

cover legal business forms, credit risk data, collections

protocols, enforcement and much more.

Credit professionals need granular knowledge of the situation

in their clients’ territories. Whether you need an off-the-peg

checklist for dealing with a new country, or you need on-thespot

information to help review risk strategies and Credit

Policies, these insightful documents will help.

Powered by

EU Factsheet


Powered by

Germany has introduced a raft of measures and programmes to help combat the

economic impact of COVID-19 containment measures. Here we present what we

consider to be the most significant and interesting. This section is not exhaustive.

Loans and grants – employees:

Three main tranches of wage subsidy have been introduced.

The most wide-reaching is “Kurzarbeit”. This programme existed before COVID-19.

It is a social security programme whereby the government will subsidy employees’

wages up to 60% (more for those with children) in order to allow their employers to

reduce their hours (and their expenditure on wages) instead of laying them off.

Under COVID provisions, the subsidy has been increased. From the fourth month,

the rate is increased to 70% of flat-net renumeration for those households without

children and 77% for those households with children. From the seventh month, it is

increased to 80% for those households without children and 87% for those

households with children. In September, there was a decree to make this benefit

more flexible (e.g., reducing the minimum number of employees effected by

working hours reduction to 10% for the business the qualify) and to extend the

period for receiving this benefit from 12 to 24 months until 31 st December 2021.


Extended ROT; Assigned to the supplier in advance. In accordance with §354a

of the Commercial Code, an advance assignment is effective despite a nonassignment

agreement between the purchaser and any third parties.

Letter before action. Do you have to send a demand letter to a debtor before

going to court?

Freelance artists in Germany can access funds if they work for cultural institutions

funded by the Federal Government. They will be compensated for up to 60% o fees

from cancelled events up to €1,000 and 40% up to €2,500.

Students can access interest-free loans of up to €650 per month for jobs lost due to

the pandemic.

Loans and grants – businesses:

EU Factsheet


As well as the enhanced terms of “Kurzarbeit”, there are a variety of direct loans

and grants available which businesses of different sizes can access.

A grant of up to €150,000 / 80% of fixed costs in the subsidy period is available for

businesses showing decreased sales volumes compared to the same month of the

previous year. This Federal Government grant has been supplemented by some

Federal States’ own grant programmes.

Powered by

Before going to court, and even before filing the claim to the enforcement

authority, a warning notice to the debtor's registered address is


The warning notice should contain;

o The name of the creditor and the basis of the claim

o The total amount of the claim, including any penalty interests

o Prescription on how to transfer the payment, i.e. bank account etc.

o A warning that the claim will be enforced through the enforcement

authority in case the claim is not settled within from the date of the


o Information on how the object to the claim if not acknowledged be

the debtor.

If this measure has been taken and the payment still has not been made after

the two-week notice period (according to the law), the creditor may file for


It is worth noting that, in Germany, you may be ordered to all pay court fees if

you did not send a warning letter to the debtor prior to issuing


Visit to view country specific factsheets from,

Germany, Italy, Czech Republic, Spain, France, UK.



Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 54


Do you know someone who would benefit from CICM membership? Or have

you considered applying to upgrade your membership? See our website for more details, or call us on 01780 722903


Michael Wykes

Jason Pallister

Studying Member

Eva Ahern

Mona Rathod

Lisa Sayer

Lisa Gater

Ella Harwood

Kuljit Toor

Daniel Cunningham

Andrew Cullen

Mandy Whelan

John Fettes

Samantha Kilty

Chloe O'Connell

Lynn Stewart

Mathew Gillard

Callum Marshall

Joanne Beckett

Helen Addis

Jimena Olindi

Faheem Amir

Katherine Drumm

Coral Collins

Marie Gerstner

Kevin Donovan-Jarvis

Dael Anglin

Victoria Littlewood

Teresa Burns

Annie Painter

Caroline Jackson

Carly Taylor

Jacobus Bakker

Jack Finch


Charleyann Finedon

John Sewell

Diane Holly

James Rutter

Aisling Millar

Member by exam

Jodie Foster

Members (Vocational)

Andrew Baker

Ian Caulfield

Eileen Bell

Victoria Bougen

Scott Jones

Andrea Tancredi


Jihad Hassan

Holly Scott-Donaldson

Lisa Jenkins

James Conroy

Alyson Bendon

Pamela Richardson

Steven Lofty

Steven Ewen

Vladimir Gotchev


Congratulations to the following, who successfully achieved Diplomas

Level 3 Diploma in Credit & Collections (ACICM)


Jonathan Ferguson

Esra Tercan

Level 5 Diploma in Credit & Collections Management MCICM(Grad)


Asha Shah

Angelina D'Abbraccio


Get in touch with the CICM by emailing with your branch news and event reports.

Please only send up to 400 words and any images need to be high resolution to be printable, so 1MB plus.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 55

B A K E R I N G . G L O B A L


Eastern Europe & Central

Asia Economic Outlook

January 2021


Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 56


The age-old argument

Data, discrimination, and employers’ responsibility

to support victims of domestic abuse.

IS an employer bound to check

sources of information used by

employees? The Court of Appeal

thought so when it dismissed

an appeal against a High Court

decision. The case involved Travel

Counsellors Limited (TCL) which had

breached its confidentiality obligations

by using client information brought by exemployees

of a competitor, Trailfinders


Following the departure of a number

of Trailfinders employees to TCL,

Trailfinders alleged that they took

with them names, contact details and

other information about clients from

a Trailfinders computer. In addition to

pursuing claims against the employees,

AUTHOR – Gareth Edwards

Trailfinders argued that TCL had acted

in breach of an equitable obligation of


TCL did not supply new franchisees

with potential customers and so travel

consultants were expected, and positively

encouraged, to bring their customer

contact list with them. TCL then added

the client information brought by the

new travel consultants to its computer.

The High Court said that a reasonable

person in the position of TCL’s CEO

would have been aware that this new

information would have been taken from

the previous employer and it would be

regarded as confidential. By receiving

such information, TCL acted in breach of

an equitable obligation of confidence.

TCL appealed, arguing that an equitable

obligation of confidence would only arise

if the recipient knew, or had notice that

the information was confidential when

objectively assessed by a reasonable

person. The Court of Appeal considered

whether a reasonable person would have

made enquiries to determine whether

the information, or some of it, may be

confidential to another; it noted that if a

reasonable person would have, then an

obligation of confidentiality arises.

So, when dealing with information

provided by new employees, it is

important for employers to find out the

source and to make the relevant enquiries

in order to avoid a potential breach of

confidence claim.

Discrimination in a recruitment process

IN Clements v Guy's and St Thomas' NHS

Foundation Trust, a tribunal held that a

middle-aged man who performed best

at interview, who hadn’t been appointed,

was discriminated against.

Mr Clements, a 50-year-old man, had

applied for a project manager role at

the trust which involved developing

new IT systems. All candidates selected

for interview had to prepare a short

presentation and were informed that

points would be awarded for ‘original, fun

yet thoughtful and punchy presentations’.

Clements had the highest scoring

presentation, although another candidate

(a younger female) came a close second.

THE Government has published an open

letter to employers outlining how they

need to provide support to victims of

domestic abuse.

The letter outlines how employers need

to take practical steps to raise awareness

of those who are suffering from domestic

abuse and procedures should be in place

to enable warning signs to be noticed, and

to enable workers to access the support

they need.

The Department for Business, Energy

and Industrial Strategy has published

a report about this, and ACAS has

updated its working from home during

the coronavirus pandemic guidance to

include a section on domestic violence and

Following interview, the candidates

were introduced to members of the team

they would be working with. Clements’

feedback concentrated on how he was

different to the outgoing post holder

(another younger female) and that others

might find it difficult to give instructions

to a more mature person. The tribunal

heard evidence that the team members

were predominantly female and younger

than Clements. It also heard evidence

about the views of some of the team as

portrayed on social media.

The tribunal found that feedback from

the team, despite not being part of the

formal interview process, was given

Employers and domestic abuse

considerable weight by the selection

panel. It was also not objective.

The selection panel selected the

younger female candidate for a number

of subjective reasons including Clements'

having an 11-year-old daughter and

because it considered it better to employ

someone at an early stage of their career

who then might go to develop their career

over a longer period of time elsewhere

within the NHS. This was communicated

to Clements.

The tribunal ordered the trust to pay

Clements £5,969.86 by way of injury to

feelings along with compensation of


abuse. In light of the Government’s report

and updated ACAS guidance, employers

are advised to review their home

working polices to ensure that there are

appropriate measures in place to support

victims of domestic abuse. Employers

should also consider developing specific

domestic abuse policies. The report

recommends appointing Domestic Abuse

Workplace Champions, who are trained to

spot the potential signs of domestic abuse

and to act as a confidante and signposting

support services where appropriate.

Gareth Edwards is a partner

in the employment team at

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 57



Credit managers are generally

one step removed from decisions

about whether a business should

consider entering an insolvency

process. Their day-to-day focus is

on keeping the business going by

protecting its cash position,

making sure debts are well managed

and credit lines are kept

open as far as possible.

However, living and working in

unprecedented times has required a

new way of thinking. As well as

adjusting to remote working during

the pandemic, credit managers have

been required to support senior-level

decision making, often at short

notice, in what has been an incredibly

fast-moving and challenging year

for many businesses.

Now, with the new ‘roadmap’ to

recovery, set out by the Prime

Minister, Boris Johnson, on 22

February, many businesses can take

stock of the financial damage caused

by the pandemic and put in place

their own restart plans. In the coming

months, a significant number of them

could take the decision to cease

operating, simply because cash

reserves have dwindled to nothing,

debts have accumulated and trading

relationships have long since broken




A research study published at the

start of the year by the London

School of Economics’ Centre for

Economic Performance (CEP) and

the Alliance for Full Employment

(AFFE) warned of a wave of insolvencies

by the spring, unless further

policy action was forthcoming.

Specifically, the study suggested that

around 900,000 small businesses

could be at risk of failing by April.

Since then, of course, Chancellor

Rishi Sunak has announced further

fiscal support measures with extensions

to furlough, self-employed

support, business grants, loans and

VAT cuts, bringing the total cost of

support to over £400bn. While this is

welcome news for businesses

convinced they can bounce back

when the time comes, others are

facing the realisation that their

operational capacity has been

drastically limited by social distancing

rules, and in some cases

demand for their products or services

may have changed or no longer

exist. For these businesses, difficult

decisions will need to be taken about

their future viability, sooner rather

than later.

“As the economy starts to

open up again, there will be

greater risk of business

failure and credit managers

will need to be primed and

ready to protect cashflow

through this tricky trading

period. ”

For businesses with diminished cash

reserves and debts that have mounted

up during the pandemic, the risks

will obviously be greater. If they take

on too much new business all at

once, this could result in overtrading,

putting pressure on cashflow and

testing lender relationships. Some

lenders may require companies to

commit to servicing or paying off

debt before providing further funding

for working capital.



To avoid this scenario, businesses

that are confident that they can

generate revenues and restart

profitably, may be able to ease some

of the pressure on their business

model by using restructuring tools

such as the Company Voluntary

Arrangement, abbreviated to CVA.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 58

In the last couple of years, CVAs

have been popular with High Street

retailers and other businesses with

large property portfolios to write

down debts owing to commercial

property landlords and renegotiate

rents going forward. However, there

is no reason why they couldn’t also

be used strategically to help

business owners to take control of

their challenging financial situation

and put forward a plan to restructure

their balance sheets and secure

lender confidence.

The structure of the CVA is bespoke

to the business in question and may

take many different forms. On the

one hand it may look like a debt

compromise agreement, setting

aside funds to pay creditors over a

period of time and possibly at a lower

value. Alternatively a third-party

investor, such as a private equity

house could inject funding to facilitate

a one-off payment of all creditors,

thus clearing the debt and

helping to obtain new working capital

finance. In some cases, the

proposed CVA plan could be based

on a combination of the two - securing

third-party finance and surplus

income set aside for distribution.

A CVA won’t be the right option for all

cash-strapped businesses, despite

their recent popularity. Sometimes

CVAs work better than other

insolvency processes as a means of

protecting business continuity. For

businesses where costs have risen

and revenues dipped significantly, it

may not be possible to generate

surplus income, and in these

circumstances, even the most

well-considered CVA proposal is

likely to fail. For this reason, it is vital

that business owners and their

finance teams take steps to ensure

that their core business proposition is

commercially viable before

considering entering a CVA on route

to recovery or supporting one.



First and foremost, the business

should prepare cashflow forecasts to

gain a better view of where the

business might be in six months or a

year’s time. The credit manager could

assist in this process by providing an

analysis of the debtor ledger, the

likelihood of securing payment and

the timeframe for payment. Once the

forecasting models are in place, they

can be used to gauge the impact that

changes to the timeline of the

Government’s roadmap, for example,

could have on the company’s cash

position. Alternatively, forecasts can

be remodeled to show the impact of a

cash injection from some asset based

lending, such as an invoice

discounting facility, together with the

associated costs.

When formulating a CVA proposal, the

business owner may be able to

persuade creditors to accept a

reduced payment, on the basis that

doing so could secure its future and

preserve their trading relationship. For

example, creditors might accept 10p

or 50p for every £1 owed to them and

be prepared to write off the remainder.

Such agreements can help to reduce

historic debt and underpin a business

with otherwise solid foundations,

giving lenders and investors the

confidence to inject funding. It is

important here for credit managers to

carefully consider their policy and

position on the historic debt versus

the longer-term, more fruitful post

recovery trading relationship.



For the credit manager, it is important

to understand how the CVA might be

used in the coming months. For

example, if a customer gives notice of

a CVA, the credit manager will need to

assess it to work out how much they

are likely to receive, the timeframe for

payment and what the prospects of

future revenue are. Depending on the

risk profile of the customer and the

trading relationship, if the credit line is

likely to continue to tighten and the

relationship worsen, the business

might choose to cut its losses and

reject the proposal.


When a customer fails to pay and enters liquidation, administration or

CVA, it’s often easier to write off the debt rather than waste time

reviewing paperwork and beginning a process that you may not have

experience of or the time for. However, before simply discarding the

debt, why not consider utilising our Creditor Services offering.

Our award winning team can help you to remove the administrative

burden so, the next time you have a customer who becomes

insolvent, remember that we can assist with the following:

Reviewing and analysing all

Insolvency Reports and


Fully explaining the process,

your rights and likely outcomes

in user friendly terms

Completing and lodging your

claim forms and proxy forms

If you believe any financial misconduct has

taken place, our specialist in house forensics

team can assist. This includes investigations

into any fraudulent trading, wrongful trading,

unlawful dividends, asset tracing and the

recovery of voidable dispositions.

Alternatively, the credit manager might

be challenged by the finance director

to support them in compiling a CVA

proposal. This is complex and

requires advice and guidance from a

trusted business recovery specialist to

formulate the strategy on how to

proceed. To succeed in winning the

support of creditors and lenders, the

plan will need to present a well-evidenced

view of what future revenues,

profits and cash collection will look

like. It will also need to be structured

in a way that is attractive to all stakeholders.

However, timing is key; as

businesses plan to restart, it is

important not to move too soon. It is

better to wait until the business can be

certain of meaningful revenue and can

see a return to operating profitably.

“The pandemic has been a

massive learning curve for

managers at all-levels and, as

the opportunity to restart

moves closer, credit

managers will need to step

up once again. ”

Representing you at Creditor

Meetings and on Creditors'


Assisting you with any

Retention of Title Claims

Providing you with our expert


Bethan Evans


+44 (0)2920 447 512

Simon Underwood


+44 (0)2074 651 932

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 59




South Redditch, up to £55,000 + benefits

The opportunity to work within a company that has been

instrumental in the battle against Covid-19 has become available.

You will be looking after the whole customer collection cycle

and be heavily involved in the direction of the credit team.

Ideally you will have a passion for a business partnering style

role and a background in collections/credit.

Ref: 3913563

Contact Dan Day on 07734 726142

or email


Brentford, up to £35,000 + OTE of circa £6,500

A world leading provider of niche services to multiple industries

is looking for a senior credits controller. You will be responsible

for the collection of debt on behalf of the UK head office with the

ambition to collect as much money as possible before referring

for litigation, whilst maintaining key relationships both internally

and externally. You will have previous experience in credit control

and litigation. Ref: 3936343

Contact Mark Ordoña on 07565 800574

or email


Leeds, up to £50,000

A rare opportunity for a career driven credit risk manager to

join a growing global manufacturing business. This is a people

management role where you will be responsible for B2B credit risk

analysis and reporting. You will be a dynamic credit professional

with extensive credit risk experience and ideally be CICM qualified.

This is a fast-paced role where you will lead your own team and be

rewarded accordingly. Ref: 3939576

Contact Jasmine Chambers on 0113 200 3735

or email


Colchester, Essex, up to £26,000

An established law firm with offices in London and Colchester

are looking for an experienced credit controller to work from its

Colchester, Essex office. This will involve you working closely with

the firms fee earners and partners to investigate unpaid fees.

You will produce debtors reports and manage WIPs. This is a

business-critical role to manage cash flow and maintain ongoing

business relationships. Ref: 3932476

Contact Andy Jarman on 01206 766621

or email

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 60



My Learning – free skills

training from Hays

To find out more visit


Newcastle, £22,000-£23,000

An SME manufacturer is currently looking to appoint a credit

controller to join its business. You will be reporting into the finance

director and you have full responsibility of the debtor ledger as

well as maintaining effective cash collection and other ad-hoc

duties such as self-billing and processing supplier invoices. The role

requires excellent communication and strong customer service skills

and the ability to work on your own initiative. Ref: 3936247

Contact Sarah Smith on 0333 010 4882

or email


Bristol, £20,000-£25,000

An opportunity to join a rapidly growing business in the

manufacturing and production industry is available for a credit

controller. You will need to build relationships with customers

and internal business partners, as well as chase debts with good

communication skills, ensuring you are proactively monitoring

customer credit limits. You will be working alongside the treasury

manager to support the wider group on cash collection and

management. Ref: 3933943

Contact Katy Russell on 07702 097944

or email

This is just a small selection of the many opportunities we have

available for credit professionals. To find out more visit us

online or contact Kabir Gulabkhan, Hays Credit Management

UK Lead on 020 3465 0020

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 61

View our digital version online at

Log on to the Members’ area, and click on the tab labelled

Credit Management magazine’

Just another great reason to be a member

Credit Management is distributed to the entire UK and international

CICM membership, as well as additional subscribers

Advancing the credit profession | +44 (0)1780 722900 |

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 62



Keep an eye on our events calendar at CICM.COM for all CICM events!

Visit our website and book online at:

Many of our events are now available

online, along with a new series of

live recorded webinars for the credit


Studying at a


with CICM

Visit our website for

updates and instructions

on how to register...

From interactive virtual classrooms to supporting texts,

from mentor advice to peer support, we’ve got it all.

Contact CICM for more information on any of these services,

or check them out at

Giving you the tools to continue

working through this crisis.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 63


CICM Directory of Services




Controlaccount Plc

Address: Compass House, Waterside, Hanbury Road,

Bromsgrove, Worcestershire B60 4FD

T: 01527 549 522



Controlaccount Plc provides an efficient, effective and ethical

commercial debt recovery service focused on improving business

cash flow whilst preserving customer relationships and established

reputations. Working with leading brand names in the UK and

internationally, we deliver a bespoke service to our clients. We

offer a no collect, no fee service without any contractual ties in.

Where applicable, we can utilise the Late Payment of Commercial

Debts Act (2013) to help you redress the cost of collection. Our

clients also benefit from our in-house international trace and

legal counsel departments and have complete transparency and

up to the minute information on any accounts placed with us for

recovery through our online debt management system, ClientWeb.

Premium Collections Limited

3 Caidan House, Canal Road

Timperley, Cheshire. WA14 1TD

T: +44 (0)161 962 4695



For all your credit management requirements Premium

Collections has the solution to suit you. Operating on a national

and international basis we can tailor a package of products and

services to meet your requirements.

Services include B2B collections, B2C collections, international

collections, absconder tracing, asset repossessions, status

reporting and litigation support.

Managed from our offices in Manchester, Harrogate and Dublin our

network of 55 partners cover the World.

Contact Paul Daine FCICM on +44 (0)161 962 4695 or


Capitol House, Russell Street, Leeds LS1 5SP

T: 0113 399 3482



Keebles debt recovery team was named “Legal Team of the Year”

at the 2019 CICM British Credit Awards.

According to our clients “Keebles stand head and shoulders

above others in the industry. A team that understands their client’s

business and know exactly how to speedily maximise recovery.

Professional, can do attitude runs through the team which is not

seen in many other practices.”

We offer a service with no hidden costs, giving you certainty and

peace of mind.

• ‘No recovery, no fee’ for pre-legal work.

• Fixed fees for issuing court proceedings and pursuing claims to

judgment and enforcement.

• Success rate in excess of 80%.

• 24 hour turnaround on instructions.

• Real-time online access to your cases to review progress.


T: +44 3333 409000



Guildways is a UK & International debt collection specialist with over

25 years experience. Guildways prides itself on operating to the

highest ethical standards and professional service levels. We are

experienced in collecting B2B and B2C debts. Our service includes:

• A complete No collection, No Fee commission based service

• 10% plus VAT commission for UK debts

• Commission from 22% plus VAT for International debts

• 24/7 online access to your cases through our CaseManager portal

• Direct online account-to-account payments, to speed up

collections and minimise costs

If you are unable to locate your customer, we also offer a no trace, no

fee, trace and collect service.

For more information, visit:


Baker Ing International Limited

Office 7, 35-37 Ludgate Hill, London. EC4M 7JN

Contact: Lisa Baker-Reynolds



Tel: 07717 020659

Baker Ing International is a dedicated team of Credit industry

experience that, combined, covers time served in most industries.

The team is wholly comprised of working Credit Manager’s

across the Globe with a minimum threshold of ten years working

experience within Credit Management. The team offers a

comprehensive service to clients - International Debt Recovery,

Credit Control, Legal Services & more

Our mission is to help companies improve the cost and efficiency

of their Credit Management processes in order to limit the risks

associated with extending credit and trading around the globe.

How can we help you - call Lisa Baker Reynolds on

+44(0)7717 020659 or email

Lovetts Solicitors

Lovetts, Bramley House, The Guildway,

Old Portsmouth Road,

Guildford, Surrey, GU3 1LR

T: 01483 347001



With more than 25yrs experience in UK & international business

debt collection and recovery, Lovetts Solicitors collects £40m+

every year on behalf of our clients. Services include:

• Letters Before Action (LBA) from £1.50 + VAT (successful in 86%

of cases)

• Advice and dispute resolution

• Legal proceedings and enforcement

• 24/7 access to your cases via our in-house software solution,


Don’t just take our word for it, here’s some recent customer

feedback: “All our service expectations have been exceeded.

The online system is particularly useful and extremely easy to

use. Lovetts has a recognisable brand that generates successful


Atradius Collections Ltd

3 Harbour Drive,

Capital Waterside, Cardiff, CF10 4WZ

Phone: +44 (0)29 20824397

Mobile: +44 (0)7767 865821


Atradius Collections Ltd is an established specialist in business

to business collections. As the collections division of the Atradius

Crédito y Caución, we have a strong position sharing history,

knowledge and reputation.

Annually handling more than 110,000 cases and recovering over

a billion EUROs in collections at any one time, we deliver when

it comes to collecting outstanding debts. With over 90 years’

experience, we have an in-depth understanding of the importance

of maintaining customer relationships whilst efficiently and

effectively collecting monies owed.

The individual nature of our clients’ customer relationships is

reflected in the customer focus we provide, structuring our service

to meet your specific needs. We work closely with clients to

provide them with a collection strategy that echoes their business

character, trading patterns and budget.

For further information contact Yvette Gray Country Director, UK

and Ireland.

Sterling Debt Recovery


T: 0207 1005978


Sterling specialises in international business debt collection

to get outstanding invoices paid quickly and cost effectively.

Our experienced, enthusiastic collectors achieve results whilst

maintaining a professional image.

We work on a commission only basis with no up-front fees and

no hidden costs. Each client is allocated a named collector for

personal service and regular updates. We collect the majority

of debt without litigation, with our on-site lawyer supporting us

where appropriate.

Where local expertise is required our global network are available

to assist.


Chris Sanders Consulting

T: +44(0)7747 761641



Chris Sanders Consulting – we are a different sort of consulting

firm, made up of a network of independent experienced

operational credit & collections management and invoicing

professionals, with specialisms in cross industry best practice

advisory, assessment, interim management, leadership,

workshops and training to help your team and organisation reach

their full potential in credit and collections management. We are

proud to be Corporate Partners of the Chartered Institute of Credit

Management and to manage the CICM Best Practice Accreditation

Programme on their behalf. For more information please contact:

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 64





Court Enforcement Services

Wayne Whitford – Director

M: +44 (0)7834 748 183 T : +44 (0)1992 663 399

E :



We help law firms, in-house debt recovery and legal teams to

enforce CCJs by transferring them up to the High Court. With our

fast, fair and personable approach to service, we work harder to

bring you the sector’s best results without risking client reputation.

• Free Transfer Up process of CCJs to High Court

• Market-leading recovery rates

• Over 100,000 writs, recovering >£187 million since 2014

• Real-time access to cases via our own Award-Winning App

• Our highly trained and certificated agents cover every postcode

in England & Wales.



2 0 0 2


Missenden Abbey, Great Missenden, Bucks, HP16 0BD

T: 01494 790600



CoCredo has 18 years experience in developing credit reports for

businesses and is the current CICM Credit Information Provider

of the Year. Our company data is continually updated throughout

the day and ensures customers have the most current information

available. We aggregate data from a range of leading providers

across over 235 territories and offer a range of services including

the industry first Dual Report, Monitoring, XML Integration and

DNA Portfolio Management.

We pride ourselves in offering award-winning customer service

and support to protect your business.




2 0 2 0

Cedar Rose

3, Georgiou Katsonotou Street,3036, Limassol, Cyprus

E: T: +357 25346630


Cedar Rose has been globally recognised as the expert for credit

reports, due diligence and data for the Middle East and North

African countries since 1997. We now cover over 170 countries

with the same high quality, expert analysis and attention to detail

we are well-known and trusted for.

Making best use of artificial intelligence and technology, Cedar

Rose has won several awards including Credit Excellence &

European Business Awards. Our website is a one-stop-shop for

your business intelligence solutions. We are the ultimate source;

with competitive prices and friendly customer service - whether

you need one or one thousand reports.



SmartSearch, Harman House,

Station Road,Guiseley, Leeds, LS20 8BX

T: +44 (0)113 238 7660

E: W:

KYC, AML and CDD all rely on a combination of deep data with

broad coverage, highly automated flexible technology with an

innovative and intuitive customer interface. Key features include

automatic Worldwide Sanction & PEP checking, Daily Monitoring,

Automated Enhanced Due Diligence and pro-active customer

management. Choose SmartSearch as your benchmark.

Graydon UK

66 College Road, 2nd Floor, Hygeia Building, Harrow,

Middlesex, HA1 1BE

T: +44 (0)208 515 1400



With 130+ years of experience, Graydon is a leading provider of

business information, analytics, insights and solutions. Graydon

helps its customers to make fast, accurate decisions, enabling

them to minimise risk and identify fraud as well as optimise

opportunities with their commercial relationships. Graydon uses

130+ international databases and the information of 90+ million

companies. Graydon has offices in London, Cardiff, Amsterdam

and Antwerp. Since 2016, Graydon has been part of Atradius, one

of the world’s largest credit insurance companies.

Company Watch

Centurion House, 37 Jewry Street,


T: +44 (0)20 7043 3300



Organisations around the world rely on Company Watch’s

industry-leading financial analytics to drive their credit risk

processes. Our financial risk modelling and ability to map medium

to long-term risk as well as short-term credit risk set us apart

from other credit reference agencies.

Quality and rigour run through everything we do, from our unique

method of assessing corporate financial health via our H-Score®,

to developing analytics on our customers’ in-house data.

With the H-Score® predicting almost 90 percent of corporate

insolvencies in advance, it is the risk management tool of choice,

providing actionable intelligence in an uncertain world.



T: 020 3868 0947



Onguard is specialist in credit management software and market

leader in innovative solutions for order to cash. Our integrated

platform ensures an optimal connection of all processes in the

order to cash chain and allows sharing of critical data.

Intelligent tools that can seamlessly be interconnected and

offer overview and control of the payment process, as well as

contribute to a sustainable customer relationship.

In more than 50 countries the Onguard platform is successfully

used for successful credit management.

Tinubu Square UK

Holland House, 4 Bury Street,

London EC3A 5AW

T: +44 (0)207 469 2577 /



Founded in 2000, Tinubu Square is a software vendor, enabler

of the Credit Insurance, Surety and Trade Finance digital


Tinubu Square enables organizations across the world to

significantly reduce their exposure to risk and their financial,

operational and technical costs with best-in-class technology

solutions and services. Tinubu Square provides SaaS solutions

and services to different businesses including credit insurers,

receivables financing organizations and multinational corporations.

Tinubu Square has built an ecosystem of customers in over 20

countries worldwide and has a global presence with offices in

Paris, London, New York, Montreal and Singapore.

Credica Ltd

Building 168, Maxell Avenue, Harwell Oxford, Oxon. OX11 0QT

T: 01235 856400E: W:

Our highly configurable and extremely cost effective Collections

and Query Management System has been designed with 3 goals

in mind:

•To improve your cashflow • To reduce your cost to collect

• To provide meaningful analysis of your business

Evolving over 15 years and driven by the input of 1000s of

Credit Professionals across the UK and Europe, our system is

successfully providing significant and measurable benefits for our

diverse portfolio of clients.

We would love to hear from you if you feel you would benefit from

our ‘no nonsense’ and human approach to computer software.

Data Interconnect Ltd

Units 45-50

Shrivenham Hundred Business Park, Majors Road,

Watchfield. Swindon, SN6 8TZ

T: +44 (0)1367 245777



Data Interconnect is dedicated to solving complex Accounts

Receivable problems through reliable, easy-to-use cloud

software. We empower billing managers and collections experts

with the tools and data they need in a user-friendly interface, for

timely, tax-compliant invoicing, collections and reconciliation in

the most cost effective, secure, auditable and trackable manner.

The powerful, flexible, Corrivo platform is the only system your

AR team needs to manage your company’s cashflow better.


T: +44 7399 406889



HighRadius is the leading provider of Integrated Receivables

solutions for automating receivables and payment functions such

as credit, collections, cash allocation, deductions and eBilling.

The Integrated Receivables suite is delivered as a software-as-aservice

(SaaS). HighRadius also offers SAP-certified Accelerators

for SAP S/4HANA Finance Receivables Management, enabling

large enterprises to maximize the value of their SAP investments.

HighRadius Integrated Receivables solutions have a proven track

record of reducing days sales outstanding (DSO), bad-debt and

increasing operation efficiency, enabling companies to achieve an

ROI in less than a year.

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 65


CICM Directory of Services







Sam Townsend Head of Marketing

Northern Europe Esker Ltd.

T: +44 (0)1332 548176 M: +44 (0)791 2772 302

W: LinkedIn: Esker – Northern Europe

Twitter: @EskerNEurope

Esker’s Accounts Receivable (AR) solution removes the all-toocommon

obstacles preventing today’s businesses from collecting

receivables in a timely manner. From credit management to cash

allocation, Esker automates each step of the order-to-cash cycle.

Esker’s automated AR system helps companies modernise

without replacing their core billing and collections processes. By

simply automating what should be automated, customers get the

post-sale experience they deserve and your team gets the tools

they need.


C2FO Ltd

105 Victoria Steet


T: 07799 692193



C2FO turns receivables into cashflow and payables into income,

uniquely connecting buyers and suppliers to allow discounts

in exchange for early payment of approved invoices. Suppliers

access additional liquidity sources by accelerating payments

from buyers when required in just two clicks, at a rate that works

for them. Buyers, often corporates with global supply chains,

benefit from the C2FO solution by improving gross margin while

strengthening the financial health of supply chains through

ethical business practices.


T: +44 (0)2073 875 868 - London

T: +44 (0)2920 495 444 - Cardiff


Operating across seven UK offices, Menzies LLP is an

accountancy firm delivering traditional services combined

with strategic commercial thinking. Our services include:

advisory, audit, corporate and personal tax, corporate

finance, forensic accounting, outsourcing, wealth

management and business recovery – the latter of which

includes our specialist offering developed specifically for

creditors. For more information on this, or to see how the

Menzies Creditor Services team can assist you, please

visit: Bethan Evans,

Partner and Head of Menzies Creditor Services, email: and phone: +44 (0)2920 447512



Serrala UK Ltd, 125 Wharfdale Road

Winnersh Triangle, Wokingham

Berkshire RG41 5RB

E: W:

T +44 118 207 0450 M +44 7788 564722

Serrala optimizes the Universe of Payments for organisations

seeking efficient cash visibility and secure financial processes.

As an SAP Partner, Serrala supports over 3,500 companies

worldwide. With more than 30 years of experience and

thousands of successful customer projects, including solutions

for the entire order-to-cash process, Serrala provides credit

managers and receivables professionals with the solutions they

need to successfully protect their business against credit risk

exposure and bad debt loss.


48 Warwick Street, London, W1B 5AW

T: +44(0)020 8050 3015



Satago helps business owners and their accountants avoid credit

risks, manage debtors and access finance when they need it – all

in one platform. Satago integrates with 300+ cloud accounting

apps with just a few clicks, helping businesses:

• Understand their customers - with RISK INSIGHTS

• Get paid on time - with automated CREDIT CONTROL

• Access funding - with flexible SINGLE INVOICE FINANCE

Visit and start your free trial today.


identeco – Business Support Toolkit

Compass House, Waterside, Hanbury Road, Bromsgrove,

Worcestershire B60 4FD

Telephone: 01527 549 531 Email:


identeco’s Business Support Toolkit is an online portal connecting

its subscribers to a range of business services that help them

to engage with new prospects, understand their customers and

mitigate risk. Annual subscription is £79.95 per year for unlimited

access. Providing company information and financial reports,

director and shareholder structures as well as a unique financial

health rating, balance sheets, ratio analysis, and any detrimental

data that might be associated with a company. Other services

also included in the subscription include a business names

database, acquisition targets, a data audit service as well as

unlimited, bespoke marketing and telesales listings for any sector.


Gravity Global

Floor 6/7, Gravity Global, 69 Wilson St, London, EC2A 2BB

T: +44(0)207 330 8888. E:


Gravity is an award winning full service PR and advertising

business that is regularly benchmarked as being one of the

best in its field. It has a particular expertise in the credit sector,

building long-term relationships with some of the industry’s bestknown

brands working on often challenging briefs. As the partner

agency for the Credit Services Association (CSA) for the past 22

years, and the Chartered Institute of Credit Management since

2006, it understands the key issues affecting the credit industry

and what works and what doesn’t in supporting its clients in the

media and beyond.




Tel: 03700 86 3000 W:

Shoosmiths’ highly experienced team will work closely with credit

teams to recover commercial debts as quickly and cost effectively

as possible. We have an in depth knowledge of all areas of debt

recovery, including:

•Pre-litigation services to effect early recovery and keep costs down

•Litigation service

•Post-litigation services including enforcement


As a client of Shoosmiths, you will find us quick to relate to your goals,

and adept at advising you on the most effective way of achieving



American Express

76 Buckingham Palace Road,

London. SW1W 9TQ

T: +44 (0)1273 696933


American Express is working in partnership with the CICM and is a

globally recognised provider of payment solutions to businesses.

Specialising in providing flexible collection capabilities to drive a

number of company objectives including:

• Accelerate cashflow • Improved DSO • Reduce risk

• Offer extended terms to customers

•Provide an additional line of bank independent credit to drive

growth • Create competitive advantage with your customers

As experts in the field of payments and with a global reach,

American Express is working with credit managers to drive growth

within businesses of all sectors. By creating an additional lever

to help support supplier/client relationships American Express is

proud to be an innovator in the business payments space.

Dun & Bradstreet

Marlow International, Parkway Marlow

Buckinghamshire SL7 1AJ

Telephone: (0800) 001-234 Website:

Dun & Bradstreet Finance Solutions enable modern finance

leaders and credit professionals to improve business performance

through more effective risk management, identification of growth

opportunities, and better integration of data and insights across

the business. Powered by our Data Cloud, our solutions provide

access to the world’s most comprehensive commercial data

and insights - supplying a continually updated view of business

relationships that helps finance and credit teams stay ahead of

market shifts and customer changes. Learn more here:


T: +44 (0)1246 555055



Forums International Ltd have been running Credit and Industry

Forums since 1991. We cover a range of industry sectors and

International trading, attendance is for Credit Professionals of all

levels. Our forums are not just meetings but communities which

aim to prepare our members for the challenges ahead. Attending

for the first time is free for you to gauge the benefits and meet the

members and we only have pre-approved Partners, so you will

never intentionally be sold to.

Bottomline Technologies

115 Chatham Street, Reading

Berks RG1 7JX | UK

T: 0870 081 8250 E:


Bottomline Technologies (NASDAQ: EPAY) helps businesses

pay and get paid. Businesses and banks rely on Bottomline for

domestic and international payments, effective cash management

tools, automated workflows for payment processing and bill

review and state of the art fraud detection, behavioural analytics

and regulatory compliance. Businesses around the world depend

on Bottomline solutions to help them pay and get paid, including

some of the world’s largest systemic banks, private and publicly

traded companies and Insurers. Every day, we help our customers

by making complex business payments simple, secure and


Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 66





T: +44 (0) 1302 513 000



Key IVR are proud to have joined the Chartered Institute of

Credit Management’s Corporate partnership scheme. The

CICM is a recognised and trusted professional entity within

credit management and a perfect partner for Key IVR. We are

delighted to be providing our services to the CICM to assist with

their membership collection activities. Key IVR provides a suite

of products to assist companies across the globe with credit

management. Our service is based around giving the end-user

the means to make a payment when and how they choose. Using

automated collection methods, such as a secure telephone

payment line (IVR), web and SMS allows companies to free up

valuable staff time away from typical debt collection.


Hays Credit Management

107 Cheapside, London, EC2V 6DN

T: 07834 260029



Hays Credit Management is working in partnership with the CICM

and specialise in placing experts into credit control jobs and

credit management jobs. Hays understands the demands of this

challenging environment and the skills required to thrive within

it. Whatever your needs, we have temporary, permanent and

contract based opportunities to find your ideal role. Our candidate

registration process is unrivalled, including face-to-face screening

interviews and a credit control skills test developed exclusively for

Hays by the CICM. We offer CICM members a priority service and

can provide advice across a wide spectrum of job search and

recruitment issues.



Portfolio Credit Control

1 Finsbury Square, London. EC2A 1AE

T: 0207 650 3199



Portfolio Credit Control, solely specialises in the recruitment of

permanent, temporary and contract Credit Control, Accounts

Receivable and Collections staff. Part of an award winning

recruiter we speak to and meet credit controllers all day everyday

understanding their skills and backgrounds to provide you with

tried and tested credit control professionals. We have achieved

enormous growth because we offer a uniquely specialist approach

to our clients, with a commitment to service delivery that exceeds

your expectations every single time.

CICMQ accreditation is a proven model

that has consistently delivered dramatic

improvements in cashflow and efficiency

CICMQ is the hallmark of industry

leading organisations

The CICM Best Practice Network is where

CICMQ accredited organisations come

together to develop, share and celebrate

best practice in credit and collections



To find out more about flexible options

to gain CICMQ accreditation

E: T: 01780 722900

Advancing the credit profession / / April 2021 / PAGE 67

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