An award-winning central London salon and hairdressing academy is back open for business following the support of a six-figure loan from Lloyds Bank.

Covent Garden-based Ena Salon closed its doors to customers and had to furlough its 50-strong team back in March. The £200,000 loan, made via the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), meant the company – led by co-founder Pedro Inchenko– could meet fixed payments including rent and insurance while income ceased.

As a result, it was in a position to reopen as soon as possible on 4 July and has been fully booked ever since. However, adopting the necessary safety and social distancing measures means the 3,600 square foot salon’s capacity and income is just 50% of what it was before lockdown. So far, half of its workforce has returned to work in the Grade 2 listed building on Great Queen St.

Ena Salon, which was established in 2009 and won a Time Out Love London award in 2018, also runs a hairdressing training arm – Allilon Hair Education – which ordinarily generates around 30% of the business’s revenue. Prior to lockdown training was exclusively face to face but the loan from Lloyds Bank has also helped the team to film tutorials and interactive classes to deliver subscription-based training online.

The salon has been a customer of Lloyds Bank since 2009 and has an annual turnover of £1.9m.

Pedro Inchenko, co-founder of Ena Salon, said, “We’re overcome with gratitude to Lloyds Bank for the support it’s given us during this challenging time. We opened the salon just after the financial crisis of 2008 and Lloyds Bank has been by our side all the way through. 

“Like so many companies within the creative industry, our people are our product, so the CBILS loan, along with the government’s furlough scheme, has been a lifeline for us.  We’re now making positive steps to diversify for the future with the start of our digital training platform, and we remain optimistic about further expansion, especially considering the generosity and support we’ve had from our wonderful clients.” 

Ashley Holmes, business banking manager at Lloyds Bank, added, “It’s great to see this highly popular salon back in action and thriving once again. It’s been a tough time for the business but as lockdown restrictions begin to ease, Pedro and the team’s optimism and ambition still shine through. We will continue to be on hand to offer our support and guidance, however it is needed.”

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