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Medication business in good health with £60m invoice discounting facility

Converse Pharma Group is primed for national expansion after securing a £60m combined facility from Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and Secure Trust Bank Commercial Finance.

Founded in 2013, the firm is a national pharmaceutical wholesaler, providing a comprehensive range of prescription drugs to over 5,500 independent pharmacies across the UK and Ireland.

Operating from bases in Doncaster and Prudhoe, Converse Pharma Group currently employs 980 members of staff across its 12 sites in the UK and Ireland. Its 140 strong sales team has helped revenues increase sharply in recent years, having achieved sales of £250m in 2018 – up from £188m the previous year.

The funding provided by RBS and Secure Trust Bank will enable the company to invest in new, larger depots, increasing the depth and range of the stock holding. It also has plans to open more satellite distribution centres across the country, as it looks to expand its geographical reach. The firm recently announced plans to open a new depot in Runcorn, which will create between 40 and 50 new jobs.

In addition to scaling up the business, Converse Pharma Group is looking to increase its product range to include over-the-counter medications.

David Horry, CEO at Converse Pharmaceuticals, said: “Our aim is to be in close proximity to all our customers across the country, and the key to that is expanding geographically. Secure Trust Bank and RBS shared our vision and enthusiasm for the Converse Pharma group, and with their support, we are capable of executing our ambitious expansion plans.”

Andrew Barraclough, Head of Asset Based Lending in the North and Scotland for RBS, said: “This facility will support the future growth of Converse, as we look to consolidate our relationship as lead bank. We are excited to enter our first syndicated facility with Secure Trust Bank, whose flexible approach has helped make this deal possible. Converse is a terrific business with key community focus, and is making great strides in delivering vital medicines to the UK’s ageing population.”

Paul Goodchild, Director at Secure Trust Bank Commercial Finance, said: “We have been aware of the success and sustained growth trajectory of Converse for some time. Working alongside RBS, we are able to provide a facility that will enable the next stage of the company’s development. The management team has placed huge emphasis on the quality of service-delivery, and investment in this area will help the business go from strength to strength. We look forward to supporting Converse for many years into the future.”