Our display over at the Duncan branch of Coast Capital Savings where we are the ‘Featured Business’. Not such a great pic, but you get the gist!

I’ve pretty much funded Bamboletta using a Visa card. I’ve done this sort of backwards – no business plan, no investment or bank loan – I literally would throw every penny I made back into Bamboletta buying more fabrics, more wool and more yarns. I was lucky because for the first few years John was working (and so was I) and I was in the position where I could do that. Anyhow, time has come now that I need to have something in the bank – more as a cushion or to take be able to take advantage of great yarn sales or something like that. When you grow a business like this and have 30 plus peeps to pay you really to fly by the seat of your pants some times!

I didn’t think asking the bank for a line of credit would be an issue at all. Pop in, chat, show them some paperwork, etc.  We have a house (mortgaged and very modest – but still), car, and almost 10 years of records of Bamboletta’s growth. Jeesh, was I ever in for a surprise! I went into a Big Bank (who will remain unnamed) to speak to a business specialist and ,man, I don’t think I’ve ever been so humiliated in my life. They wanted nothing short of my first born – seriously! I wasn’t even asking for a loan! Just a line of credit. It was horrible – I shudder thinking back to those few weeks of trying to appease them. Finally, I thought, ‘ENOUGH!  It can NOT be this difficult’!  So, I went over to Coast Capital Savings as I had banked with them before and heard great things about them.

What an amazing difference! I was treated so nicely and with respect  – not as though I had a big ‘X’ on my head.  The fact that I employee 30 plus women  in a small town where there aren’t a lot of options was recognized and appreciated instead of looked upon as a liability. Paperwork was handled quickly and efficiently and always with a smile. I think at Coast they see beyond the bottom line and I really feel like I have a partner in all this now. In the next week or so I’ll go in to sign to finally get a Line of Credit! I was even made the ‘Featured Business’ over at my branch! How cool is that?

I’m not in cahoots with Coast to write this like an advertisement or anything like that. The experience with the other bank was so horrid that the way I am treated now feels like it should be written about, you know? And, as perhaps one business owner to another , tales like this are good to read about. The good, the bad and the banks!






2 responses to “Banking!”

  1. Krista Chileshe Avatar
    Krista Chileshe

    and imagine, I have been the banker pestering you and into your business for years. 😉

    I am so happy you went with Coast Capital Savings. I love their style and they are a great fit for you and your business. I most likely could have saved your time and embarrassment with the “big bank” as I know all of their “personalities” for business banking.

    But hey, maybe you wouldn’t have believed me! Nothing like first hand experience to make you appreciate something different like Coast. 😉

    I must say, in BC, I like Coast and Vancity. In AB, I like Servus credit union. I myself deal with Scotia (I need some international outreach).

    Overall for the big banks….as a business owner and long time commercial banker I would always direct other business owners to Scotiabank or BMO. Sometimes though…it really is ALL about who your account manager is though. Unfortunately, it is a bit of a guess and test.

    YAY for your line of credit! Working Capital is king for growth!

  2. linda jt Avatar
    linda jt

    thanks for these posts, C. i really enjoy reading them and it makes me feel like I am a part of something special, too, even though I’m just a ‘fan’ and a long-time customer. please keep sharing all of these little vignettes. i know it takes time–precious time away from your growing boys. but i love knowing all of these little details as the years go by…

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