Doing Business Together (DBT) was formed as a non-profit umbrella organisation including businesses and individuals and has won the support of chambers, politicians and banks.

The first event, held in Richmond in December, was a huge success and spurred members on to almost immediate expansion.

Founder Chris Poll approached Wandsworth and Macclesfield chambers of commerce to put the idea across, and was greeted with support.

The event was so well received by Twickenham MP Vince Cable that the group is now to hear from the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

DBT’s specific function is to build on the relationship between money lenders and small businesses that Mr Poll believes, with a little nurturing, could pave the way to quicker economic recovery.

Mr Poll has tapped into his expertise running company CreditPal to help form the relationship.

His company uses algorithms developed in Bletchley Park during World War II to bring together company accounts in one package that are immediately assessed for faults and, when all green ticks appear, can then be forwarded to banks in just a few simple steps.

It is this clear and concise way of approaching banks that he feels will be most valuable to businesses looking for money.

Stephen Pegge, chairman of BBA small firms advisory panel, said: “DBT recognises that a partnership of the wider financial community and business groups can help businesses enhance their access to finance, their credit terms and their business success.”

The emergence of DBT could not have come at a more opportune time, with banks pledging to lend more money to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Phil Orford, who will speak at today’s event, said the money-lending pledges made as part of Project Merlin needed to be explained and backed up.

He added: “The question we need to ask is, how?

“The banks say demand is down. They say applications are running at an 80 per cent acceptance rate.

“If this is the case, how do they intend to increase lending to small firms by 15 per cent?

“I believe the answer is they must review risk criteria and be less punitive on viability assessments – and make a particular effort to cut down on sector-based discrimination.

“The message now to all small businesses is the banks have committed to lend more. Test them on their commitment and get your applications in.”

For more information about DBT, visit