A POOLE haulage company has been forced into liquidation after Royal Bank of Scotland slashed its funding.

Startruck Logistics, on the Nuffield Industrial Estate, has seen its cashflow cut by almost 30 per cent, which managing director Dave Buik said is “totally unreasonable”.

Startrucks’ 17 staff and 11 subcontractors have all lost their jobs.

The company has been trading for two-and-a-half years and in 2008 generated a £1.9 million turnover.

In the first seven months of this financial year it reported an £800,000 turnover despite January and February being quiet months.

Its 280 clients included Poole businesses Lush Cosmetics, Southern Print and Amenco Storefitting.

On Friday, March 13, the Daily Echo revealed that 1st4Boats, the Poole powerboat specialist, had its £40,000 credit card facility withdrawn without notice by RBS.

Startruck was using the bank’s invoice discounting to free up cash in the business.

This enabled the company to receive 85 per cent of the value of raised invoices immediately.

However, after Startruck suffered £50,000 of bad debts, RBS cut the facility to 59 per cent, forcing the business to shut.

“We thought that the bank was trying to help us out with the government small loans scheme,” said Mr Buik.

“If I had known sooner we could have contacted other banks,” he added.

Mr Buik had tried to reduce costs and drivers were prepared to do five hours of unpaid overtime each week. “Last week was the busiest week of the year,” he said.

An RBS spokesperson said: “We have worked with the directors at Startruck Logistics in an attempt to enable the company to deal with challenging trading conditions.

“It is in no one’s interest to advance lending to a company that can not afford to repay.”

Terry Evans of Rogers Evans in Southampton has been appointed as administrator.