A £750,000 loan from the Development Bank of Wales has enabled husband and wife team, Shah and Nicky Seehootoorah to pursue their dream of owning their own residential care home.
With extensive experience in specialist dementia and elderly mentally infirm (EMI) care, Mr and Mrs Seehootoorah established Banyan Care Homes Limited to purchase White Rose Care Home in New Tredegar from care provider Larchwood Care.
White Rose is a purpose-built care home registered for 32 residents over the age of 65, including those with dementia. It was built in 1990 and occupancy rates are typically over 95% with the majority of residents being publicly funded by local authorities including Caerphilly, Blaenau Gwent and Vale of Glamorgan.
The loan from the Development Bank of Wales has enabled Banyan Care Homes to safeguard the jobs of the 42 staff who provide 24/7 care and retain the same manager who had been integral to the successful running of the care home for the previous owners. It also ensures continuity of care for residents within the local community.
Director Shah Seehootoorah said: “Larchwood Care mainly operate in the East of England but they had developed an excellent reputation for White Rose that is testament to the high quality care provided for residents by the team, all of whom take great pride in their work and genuinely care about their residents.
“Our experience in the care sector means that we know what makes a great residential care home; a welcoming environment, well-run services and continuity of care that is delivered by staff who really care. White Rose has this but without the funding from the Development Bank of Wales we would never have been able to complete the purchase, as Covid-19 didn’t stop them from being able to meet our timescales.
“The open and transparent approach of the team from the Development Bank made the process seamless; they listened and took real interest in our aspirations for White Rose and future plans for Banyan Care. Their support means that we’ve been able to safeguard services for residents and protect 42 jobs. What’s more, we have committed to paying all staff above the minimum wage and will be introducing a buy local policy so that we use local suppliers wherever possible.”
The Development Bank of Wales was introduced to Nicky and Shah Seehootoorah by Gary Boyce of Christie Finance. Investment Executive Ruby Harcombe and Assistant Investment Executive Emily Jones worked on the deal. They said: “It’s been a real pleasure to work with Nicky and Shah on this investment and support them with the funding that they needed to begin their own journey as business owners whilst allowing the team to continue serving to serve their local community safe in the knowledge that their jobs are protected.
“As we all live longer, it is a key priority for Welsh Government that we should all be able to age well and live in age-friendly communities where older people feel valued, included and respected. Indeed, care is a key sector of the foundational economy so we are particularly pleased that we’ve been able to provide the funding that will keep White Rose Care Home as an integral part of the local community.”
The £750,000 loan from the Development Bank of Wales was funded through the Wales Business Fund. The £204 million Wales Business Fund is funded by Welsh Government and the European Regional Development Fund and is open to small and medium-sized businesses (those with fewer than 250 employees) based in Wales, or willing to relocate to Wales. Loans, mezzanine finance and equity from £50,000 to £2 million is available with terms range from one to seven years.
Harrison Clark Rickerbys acted for Banyan Care Homes Limited.