21 May 2020

Land Rover Defender specialist secures funding to safeguard business during coronavirus

A South West business which creates and refurbishes custom Land Rover Defenders has secured a seven-figure finance facility from HSBC UK to safeguard the future of the company during the COVID-19 crisis.

Arkonik, which was established by Andy Hayes in 2007, is using the HSBC UK funding to protect more than 80 jobs, pay suppliers and support its cash flow during the pandemic.

The funding is part of the bank’s Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), which is available for existing customers with a group turnover of up to £45 million. The Government guarantee will secure bank loans to viable businesses with a sound borrowing proposal.

David Butler, Head of Business Banking in Bristol, Gloucestershire & Wiltshire, said: “Arkonik is a great example of a business which puts both its people and its products at the heart of everything it does. Andy and his team have spent years lovingly bringing Land Rover’s iconic Defenders back to life and have been rewarded with a global client base and many returning customers. With its roots firmly in the South West, our team has been committed to supporting the business during this challenging time and we look forward to seeing its inevitable success in the future.”

Andy Hayes, CEO of Arkonik Ltd, added: “I started Arkonik whilst recovering from a motorcycle accident in 2007 which forced me to postpone my career in Environmental Management. Since then, the business has grown exponentially, and we now have a customer base across the world. Since the global lockdowns came into effect, all orders in transit to north America have been put on hold.”

The HSBC UK funding, put in place by our Relationship Manager Chris Hill, has allowed me to provide much-needed job security to my teams in the UK and USA and enabled the business to continue to take orders during one of the most challenging times for businesses everywhere.”

Arkonik, has created more than 300 custom-built Land Rover Defenders since its inception. Each Defender requires more than 55 production staff to build.  An Arkonik Defender has an average retail price of £180,000, with every part of the vehicle custom-made if required. The business has experienced year-on-year growth, with a current turnover in excess of £10 million.

For more information, please visit: https://www.arkonik.com/en-GB/.

HSBC UK is working closely with the Government and UK Finance to identify emerging issues and make sure customers and businesses have the advice and support they need. For tips and advice for businesses around planning for any possible disruption, visit www.business.hsbc.com/novel-coronavirus.

The new measures build upon the package of support that HSBC UK has already announced for business customers:

  • Launched BBILS, CBILS, CLBILS and CCFF
  • Allocated £5bn to help businesses that need support
  • Removed the £100 Small Business Loan fee to relieve the pressure faced by SMEs across the country
  • Removed informal overdraft fees – As of 1st April we will no longer apply any Informal Overdraft fees
  • Offering repayment holidays to free up cash within businesses
  • Stopped all unauthorised overdraft charges
  • Reviewing overdrafts or trade loans to allow stock to be held for longer
  • Offering companies involved in the supply and manufacture of ventilators preferential pricing, extended repayment terms on loans and fast track approval times to support the unprecedented demand on UK hospitals.
  • We have also extended that support to customers that can give immediate help to essential public services and vulnerable people. We are contacting clients involved in the manufacture and supply of Personal Protective Equipment to offer preferential finance and, where possible, the direct purchase of supplies and equipment for essential public services.
  • We will also offer similar terms to clients involved in the wholesale of food.
  • Our relationship managers have been proactively contacting customers to see what help their businesses need.
  • We’ve launched a coronavirus helpline to support any customer queries and a dedicated coronavirus hub on our website.


  • £3bn to importers and exporters that need additional support*
  • pre-approved 60-day extensions on trade loans for customers with a sound trade loan/financing record
  • a one-hour turnaround on the issuance of Shipping Guarantees, enabling customers to transfer or receive goods from their counterparty faster
  • a dedicated helpline that connects directly with trade finance specialists (0800 783 1300, open 9am – 5pm Monday to Friday), in addition to the support being offered by relationship managers