Business suffers as personal loans weigh hard on owner’s mind

ABC Computing* provides Apple helpdesk and onsite support and repairs to retail, small business and not-for-profit customers. When we started working with them, they were at a crossroads. Struggling with poor cash flow and creditors threatening drastic action, the business owner had to decide whether to trade on and endeavour to turn the business around or go into liquidation.

The business turned over more than $1m in FY 2017/18 with losses of around $160k. The owner was preoccupied with financial woes and customer service was suffering. Without prompt objective support the business was destined to go under.

Solving the problem

We met with the client to listen and learn, to understand the owner’s and the business’ issues. We discovered the owner’s major concerns were the personal guarantees provided by family members to keep the business afloat, and a major creditor requiring payment. We also found a legacy structure unsuited to the current business model.

As hands-on business advisors, we worked closely with management and staff to help turn the business around. Some specific actions included:

  • Meeting weekly with the owner to plan and monitor progress
  • Instituting a payment agreement with the major creditor
  • Engaging an independent accountant to replace a family member
  • Protecting family’s personal finances
  • Identifying the profitable areas of the business
  • Restructuring the business to focus on customer service


The changes are paying off with customer satisfaction improving and with ABC Computing turning a modest profit in FY 2018/19 of $7k.

*We have used a fictitious name to preserve the privacy of the company.

ClientRegional Manufacturer
Skillscash flow, business restructure, pricing, creditor negotiations