COVID redundancy pushes Rocky woman to launch own business
From moving to Rockhampton to be with her terminally-ill mother to losing her job during the COVID pandemic, Centelle Winstanley has not let life’s challenges get her down.
Last month the 30 year old launched her new business, Fraction Finance, an asset finance brokerage.
Centelle lived in Bajool until she was 10 and then moved to England before coming back to Australia and moving to Townsville where she finished her schooling.
She was working in building design and moved to Brisbane, but when the building downturn hit she found a new job at a car dealership.
Centelle quickly learnt she hated selling cars, but liked the customers service side of things and paperwork and after a year she asked to be transferred to the finance department.
It was there she found her true passion in finance brokerage, a role which she remained in five years.
She made the move to Rockhampton in June 2019 after her mum was diagnosed terminal cancer.
“All I had in Brisbane was my job and my dogs, and my family is everything,” she said.
Working from home for a while with the Brisbane company, she then got another job at a Rockhampton business but after about a year was given a redundancy as a result of COVID-19.
Centelle likes to specialise in consumer loans, which are for the everyday person who may not be accepted by the major banks and is looking for a loan for a vehicle or asset.
“Car, boats, jetskis, caravans … I did a hydraulic post driver yesterday, just random agricultural equipment,” Centelle said.
“I get referrals for people that have defaults and can’t go through lenders.
“Banking polices have changed in all of the major lenders following the Royal Commission a few years ago with the big four banks, a lot of them wouldn’t get approved, even if it’s something as simple as a telecommunications default.
“If someone doesn’t fit through a main bank’s policy they come to me and I find somewhere to put their loan.
“It’s rewarding, you’re still helping people and it saves them ruining their credit file by going to all these places.”
At her previous role she was the only one working in the consumer area and once she was made redundant, she thought why not strike out on her own as she had the skills to do it by herself.
The business launched in December and she has been slowly growing it since.
“I worked out all of the processes to the transition and started working at the SmartHub,” she said.
Working in the SmartHub’s coworking space has immensely helped Centelle get her business off the ground, not just professionally through contacts, but personally through the supportive help of the other members and staff.
“When you start out on your own you don’t want to have too many overheads,” she said.
“I was considering working from home but then I know when I moved here and I worked from home I hated it because I had no one to talk to, no one to vent to and I just wanted to be around other people.
“The thought of being able to go into a coworking space, it doesn’t matter if they don’t do the same thing as me.
“The first couple of weeks I started here it was a lot more difficult than I thought and I had a couple of meltdowns and it was so good to have someone there to vent to.
“You’ve got like-minded people around you doing the same things.”
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Phone: 0451 179 617
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