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Federation of Small Businesses defends bosses from sour Sugar

Business guru Alan Sugar soured a meeting with small business bosses by telling them that most firms applying for bank loans were ‘moaners’ who did not deserve to borrow.

Sir Alan, who acts as the government’s enterprise champion, was in Manchester talking to 300 businessmen at a session for ‘championing the cause of small, viable businesses with the banks’. After hearing from one businessman that four banks had turned down his loan applications and that businesses were failing because of cash flow, Sir Alan said: “I hate the use of this word cash flow in the sense in that it is a business problem. Banks are there to do business. Anyone who says they are not is wrong. 

“I can honestly say a lot of problems you hear from people who are moaning are from companies I wouldn’t lend a penny to.” 

The star of TV’s The Apprentice said that 85% of small firms did not deserve to receive any bank loans and they would be better off with an insolvency adviser. 

“The problem is that some younger people who have lived through the past 10 years or so of business think the irresponsible manner in which the banks dealt is the norm.  You lived in the Disneyworld, you have lived in the unrealistic Disneyworld in the way banks dished out money,” said Sir Alan. 

“I have advised the government since June and I have listened to a lot of the business link centres. 

“In doing so I have insisted on meeting the business advisers and listened to the advice they are giving. On top of the list of complaints were banks. 

“Don’t just talk to me in inverted commas about ‘banks being horrible and nasty.’ Regretfully, when we delve into some examples of the companies that have gone to them saying lend me some money I wouldn’t lend them one penny. 

“They are bust. The moaners are bust. They are bust and they don’t need the bank — they need an insolvency practitioner.”

The Federation of Small Businesses commented: “Most small companies live in the real world not Disneyworld and they lie at the heart of our economy. 

“They are not moaners and the fact is they are working hard in difficult times and they need help from our banks. The Government was absolutely right to tell the banks to lend money to businesses and those small companies should be encouraged to grow.”


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