Enterprise + The right funding = Business Success

When Louis Sherman stepped into Bristol’s grand Dominions House, he knew he’d found the business opportunity he and his partner, Lisa, had been looking for. With its rich heritage and prime position, this Grade II Listed Building was the perfect place to open an independent coffee house.

Meticulous market research proved his instinct was spot-on and the couple set to work on creating an ambience that was too good to resist: Dom’s Coffee House – the name a homage to its historic home. No surprise then that Dom’s soon became the go-to place for anyone wanting to swap the day to day grind for the more seductive roasted variety.

What did surprise them, however, was their bank’s unwillingness to support their business ambitions.


Finding funding was hard going

“We found that high street banks were reluctant to lend to start-ups with less than two year’s accounts; it’s the old ‘chicken and egg’ situation. I had a spotless record with my same high street bank for over 8 years, and they still said ‘no’.’”

But the couple weren’t taking no for answer.

“I think high street banks have all too rigid rules which prevented them from assessing our businesses impartially. So we shopped around for short-term finance solutions with competitive interest rates and picked Ashley Finance because we found that they were the best match for us.”

We were only too happy to help them realise their ambition: To grow Dom’s into a successful – and highly profitable – enterprise.


Funding that worked for them

As with any business, cash flow is key. We tailored a finance package that worked the way their business needed it to work. And it did.

“Funding from Ashley Finance meant we were able to employ the staff we needed and invest in growing the business. We developed the basement, created new office spaces and improved our stock control; we were also able to secure our alcohol licence, which was key to attracting nearby concert and theatre pre-show audiences into Dom’s.”

“It also gave us the necessary resilience in the months when business was slower than expected, as well as providing essential boosts to pursue market opportunities quickly.”

With an abundance of glowing online reviews, it’s fair to say that plaudits hailing Dom’s as a ‘shining star’ and ‘outstanding’ could equally be applied to Louis and Lisa’s business savvy.


Going from strength to strength

Now in their second year of trading, they’re ready to embark on the next stage of their growth strategy:

“We’re looking to increase our market share leading to higher customer volumes. It’s a challenge, not least because we’ve just had a baby, but what’s essential to us is maintaining that great ‘Dom’s’ experience’ as our business grows, ensuring that our customers not only return, but also recommend us to their friends and family. Dom’s is a constant cycle of analysis and improvement. Every day we’re thinking about how we can increase our customer appeal”.

For us, Louis and Lisa are a shining example of business people who know what they want. And more importantly, how to get it. Like many small and early stage businesses they couldn’t get the funding they needed from a High Street Bank. But like the hundreds of businesses we help day in, day out they woke up and smelt the coffee. And found the right solution with alternative finance.

Case Studies

ICP Networks

Speedy funding gave ICP Networks the opportunity to jump ahead with plans to expand.

Dom’s Coffee House

Ashley stepped-in when the banks were unwilling to provide the funds Dom’s Coffee House needed to grow.

Invoice Finance Case Study
DSC Telemarketing

Even though Stuart needed help with cash flow he was sceptical about funding. Now he wishes he’d done it sooner!


These guys needed a lender who could see the good in their business, not dwell on current issues.

Condor Blinds and Shutters

“We struggled to find funding – the banks don’t want to know, particularly if you have a less than perfect credit rating.”

Invoice Finance Case Study
DH Condensate LTD

Funding from Ashley ensures this refrigeration company is not left out in the cold…

Invoice Finance Case Study
Espere Healthcare Ltd

Long term partnerships makes the cash flow work….

The Three Stags

What do you do when a nearby major tourist attraction closes, and your regular trade starts to drop….

Invoice Finance Case Study
Fresh Drivers Logistic Solutions

Helping a Driver Logistics company get off to a great start…

Gym-wear Importer

How International Supplier Finance eased cash flow concerns for Manchester Gym-Wear Importer

Invoice Finance Case Study
Shoe Wholesaler

How Ashley helped a 150 year old Shoe Wholesaler stay one step ahead of their cash flow!

£40k Business Loan saves ceiling company from collapse

£40k Business Loan paid out in 4 days, saving ceiling company from collapse

Invoice Finance Case Study
Electrical Contractors

After forced closure, Electrical Contractors able to start again by using Invoice Finance