Bookbarn International sells second-hand and antiquarian books through 20 different online marketplaces around the world.
William Pryor – a direct descendent of Charles Darwin – and a colleague took over the troubled business in 2013 and has spent the last six years turning it around. He built the brand and put the software and systems in place that have enabled it to trade effectively on a global scale. Today, around 80 per cent of its sales are online, with the other 20 per cent taking place from its two shops and café in Somerset.
After an appearance on Dragons’ Den in 2017 failed to attract investment, William began looking for alternative financial backing to grow the business, which was growing 25 per cent year on year.
Earlier this year, Bookbarn International CEO Nick Bates came across the Swoop Funding platform and advised William to get in touch. William had engaged a number of brokers previously, and none were able to get him the funding needed. It didn’t take long for that to change once he’d discovered Swoop.
One call with the Head of Funding Solutions at Swoop was all it took. Swoop understood the complexities of the Bookbarn International business, and was able to build a strong business case for an underwriting team to give William a fast decision.
On September 13 2019, just four days after his initial contact with Swoop, William – who has written several books himself – received an offer for £150,000 of debt funding, which he can draw down in stages.
William is now using this to grow Bookbarn International’s stock of books and implement new software within the business.
“Swoop understood our revenue model and built a business case that made the underwriting process much faster. All it took was one conversation with Swoop. It was that easy. It’s been successful.”
William Pryor, owner of Bookbarn International