Startline Motor Finance has secured a £375m credit facility from JP Morgan, marking the third renewal and upsize of the facility between the two firms since 2017.

Despite the pandemic, Startline has registered record levels of business across the last few months. According to chief executive, Paul Burgess, this success is attributable to the firm’s flexible approach to the motor finance sector.

Burgess said: “The specific lending philosophy that we have pioneered in the motor finance sector is increasingly coming into its own, thanks both to greater understanding of our proposition from introducers such as dealers and to current economic conditions.”

Startline’s financial solutions are designed to be used when a mainstream prime lender has declined an applicant – an increasingly relevant approach in the current context of economic uncertainty.

Burgess continued: “Certainly, it’s no secret that prime lenders have been tightening their criteria in recent months as a direct result of the coronavirus situation and this undoubtedly creates new opportunities for a company such as ours, with a motor finance product range designed to sit just behind frontline lenders as part of a structured lending panel.”

“We’ve always believed that it makes no sense and is unfair that buyers who fall slightly below prime lender requirements that they very often end up using sub-prime offerings, with the poor costs and conditions that implies. There should be other options.”

“In recent years, with a shifting social and economic landscape signifying changes in home ownership and employment patterns, we’ve heavily promoted the fact that a move towards products like ours makes absolute sense. With the likely negative economic effects of the pandemic on the economy and car buyers, this will become even more apparent.

Startline has recorded a workforce increase from 80 to 130 employees, while new business volumes have increased by 20% since the previous facility from JP Morgan.

Burgess finished: “What we do at Startline is treat the applicant as an individual. Of course, we have some hard lending rules but in areas where other lenders take a black-and-white approach, we will take a look at each individual in more detail and, as a result, can offer APRs and terms that are comparable with traditional prime lenders. It’s a fair and balanced approach.”