Lender gives wealthy tick on valuable watches

Time is money for many investors – and a fabulous collection of watches pawned by the wealthy proves the point.

borro, an upmarket pawnbroker calling themselves a ‘short term lender’ has ticked up a 122% increase in the amount of cash advanced against watches in the past two years.

Wealthy owners have left watches from some of the world’s most expensive brands with the firm – a sample of some currently resting in their vaults include:

  • White gold Cartier Ballon Blue watch worth £35,000
  • Man’s Chopard diamond white gold watch valued at £35,000
  • Patek Philippe 5960P worth £30,000
  • Breitling Bentley Mulliner  Platinum Tourbillon wristwatch valued at £20,000

borro CEO Paul Aitken said: “It seems more and more people are looking to alternative sources of finance for accessing cash.

Quick access to finance

“Many people own valuable watches, not realising their true value however, they could be reaping the benefits available from lending against assets like these. borro provides a solution with quick access to finance.”

The trend is for small business owners to look to firms like borro to raise cash as traditional funding for risky businesses has dried up from the banks.

“Most of our clients use borro to facilitate a business transaction or opportunity, to fund surveys or pay other fees relating to property refinancing,” said Aitken.

“Other reasons that we see clients coming to borro include supporting an irregular income, funding holidays and school fees, and helping to pay tax bills and other unexpected bills and fees.”

The firm has also launched a new service lending against personal assets going through a private sale or auction.

Economic uncertainty

The service is for wealthy customers with high-value assets, like fine art, antiques, prestige and classic cars, diamond jewellery, luxury watches and fine wine

Lending is at 70% of the value to a maximum £1 million.

Aitken said: “There is still a great deal of economic uncertainty at the moment in the UK. Household budgets continue to be squeezed and small businesses are struggling for finance. We know there is demand from consumers to be able to quickly access finance and as this demand is not being met by banks and other traditional lenders, consumers may consider selling assets as an alternative.

However, selling high-value assets for the right price may take several months for the appropriate auction or until a buyer comes along. With a consignment loan from borro consumers get immediate access to finance, allowing them to invest in and maximise other opportunities. This also allows them to leverage borro’s expertise at managing the sale”.