The Myth Of Inventory Finance Companies

Your company carries it. You need to finance it. We’re of course talking about inventory. Discussions with clients reveal a lot of misconceptions around inventory financing in Canada. Let’s try and resolve some of those myths around the financing of your inventory, who the players are, who they are not ( that’s the most common myth ) and we’ll also try and provide some straight forward direction on next steps in your inventory financing challenge.

The overall quality of your inventory management will play a large part in your ability to finance your products, which are a part of the current assets component of your balance sheet. You cannot overlook the importance that an inventory lender will place on your ability to report and count your products. The reality is that most firms are either carrying a ‘ continuous’ or ‘ ‘periodic’ system of inventory control.

So here is solid tip # 1 – be aware that inventory lenders prefer a continuous type of inventory accounting, for all the obvious reasons. Essentially you are counting and monitoring inventory (with the use of software of course!) at all times. That’s a good thing when it comes to a lenders valuation on an ongoing basis and their ability to lend.

You’re company is growing. Unfortunately so is your inventory! And that places a huge drain on your cash flow. The working capital cycle dictates that cash turns into inventory which turns into receivables and then we start all over… that lag can be anywhere from 60 – 120 days, sometimes longer. Never underestimate the problem that higher sales will bring to your inventory financing needs.

Clients typically are looking for inventory financing because the level of investment that you have in product and receivables drains your cash flow. As sales volumes increase your cash flow decreases based on your overall collection period of A/R and of course those inventory turns.

Your sales staff of course never wants to be in a position to tell a customer you don’t have the product they have worked so hard to sell.

Does your company have an inventory financing strategy? The majority of firms we talk to in Canada, certainly in the small and medium business sector do not have access to the inventory financing they need. Do true inventory financing companies exist in Canada? We feel that the answer is generally ‘ no ‘, they do not. However if your firm would consider an asset based lending scenario that in effect takes the place of inventory finance companies in Canada.

Under an asset based lending strategy your inventory is margined for what its worth, by experts who categorically know what its worth. You will enhance your ability to finance your product if you have the controls, reporting, and inventory accounting system in places that makes the inventory and asset based lender ‘ comfortable ‘.

Speak to a trusted, credible, and experienced business financing advisor with regards to inventory financing companies and asset based lenders who will give your product the financing it deserves!

Secrets of Dealing With Equipment Leasing Financing Companies

What’s my rate? Are we approved? What are my rights and obligations under this transaction? What’s the capital of North Dakota… oh sorry, forget that last one..!

And on it goes… these are just some of the many questions that clients ask us when they are looking for assistance in sourcing and negotiating equipment leasing and working with financing companies in that regard. We do acknowledge it’s a big challenge sometimes – the Canadian marketplace is a bit different than its counterpart in the U.S. The finance industry is fragmented, and business owners and financial mangers absolutely could not be expected to know the credit appetite, the asset appetite, and the structuring options available from literally hundreds of firms offering lease financing.

Let’s share some ‘ secrets’ and tips around ensuring you can be successful in your equipment financing strategy. First of all, different strokes for different folks – what do we mean by that? Simply there are number of very well published ‘ equipment leasing benefits ‘ offered by finance firms. Do they all apply to your firm? Probably note, so focus in on understanding which benefits of lease financing work for you, and then… maximize them! Through effective negotiations.

For the record those benefits usually include payment structuring to your cash flow, tax advantages, upgrade and return options, and simply being an alternative to traditional debt and loan negotiation. Oh and we forgot one other key benefit, its generally recognized that lease financing credit approval is significantly easier to obtain than bank term debt or other loan mechanisms of a more traditional nature.

Psst… Want to know another secret. Here’s a good one, that almost no transaction is too large or too small for the Canadian equipment financing market. So, if it makes sense to lease a 2000.00 photocopier consider it, and if you’re buying a corporate jet for 3 Million dollars, there is a lease approval for that asset also.

If there is on obvious secret or tip that most owners miss it’s simply that when it comes to any type of ‘ technology ‘ you should consider equipment leasing with financing companies that are knowledgeable about the asset. We are mostly talking about computers, but the tech universe today covers telecom, and many other types of assets. Technology changes, tech assets depreciates very quickly, and the best kept secret in town is often a technology operating lease, allowing you full use, but not ownership, of the asset.

Many clients seem confused by the ‘ lingo’ used by financing companies. You can be forgiven for not knowing ‘ off balance sheet leasing, residuals, fmv, all in rate, amort, ‘ etc, etc etc. So the best and final secret we can probably provide for you is simply to search out a trusted, credible, and experienced Canadian business financing advisor who will help you identify priorities and finalize equipment leasing success for your asset acquisitions.

Choosing The Right Receivable Financing Company

The very mention of the term “bank loan” to a business owner is often enough to elicit a very strong and visceral response and the simple truth of the matter is that the average business bank loan is a fairly contentious and controversial subject within the business community. On one hand, a bank loan will provide the business owner with a source of capital that they otherwise would not have, which in turn can mean that bold ambitions of expanding and developing the business in a particular direction can be more fully achieved and accomplished with a minimum of disruption.

This is especially significant in highly competitive sectors of the market, as any measure of delay can ultimately result a business that chose to postpone any sort of development or alterations to the manner in which they do business being overtaken by a rival. The downside here however, is that the loan will be required to be paid back and so if the business is struggling to generate enough revenue, or worse yet, is already in debt, then the repayment maybe too much of a burden for its finances.

Furthermore, in order to actually gain access to a bank loan, a business will typically be required to secure assets that it owns as collateral, and so a noncompliance with the terms of the loan will ultimately mean that the assets secured as collateral maybe seized by the lender.

Thankfully, there is an alternative strategy for the struggling business owner who is looking to secure another external source of capital finance to provide their company with a much needed kick start: a receivable financing company.

A receivable financing company, or a factoring agency as they oftentimes referred to within business parlance, is a business entity that will purchase outstanding invoice accounts from a company and then provide the client company with a sum of money upon receipt of the invoices. The receivable financing company will then assume full, legal responsibility for the collection process of the money owed by the client specified on the invoice.

Once the client has paid the full balance owed to the receivable financing company, the factoring agency will then release the remainder of the funds owed to the client company….with a small deduction made from the funds received from the client in order to cover the expenses that they have incurred.

One of the major benefits of using a factoring agency is that the client company will be guaranteed to receive a fairly large amount of money in a very short space of time indeed which effectively eliminates and protects against the risks that an unpredictable and capricious degree of cash flow will pose to a client company.

Furthermore, this method of business financing will effectively mean that the agency is responsible for the collection process thereby freeing up the time and money of the client company who will not have to contend with the chasing up of fees or commissions owed.

Finance Companies – Tips on How to Select the Best

Finance companies are designed to provide leasing or hire purchase contract to many business owners. They are there to help you achieve your business or investment opportunities. There are many things that you need to put into consideration when you are looking for one that will provide you with the services that you need. You will need to do research since there are many finance companies that have come up in the market, making it competitive. Some of them provide funding with the aim of marketing their products and/or services.

Others are part of major banks while there are those who are members of financing and leasing associations. Since there are many finance companies out there, it is only advisable that you search for one that has a reputable background. A good reputation and the fact that the company is a member of the finance and leasing association is the kind of company you want to deal with.

When you settle for a particular finance company it is also vital that you fully comprehend the contract you have with them. It should be in agreement with any verbal or written quotation. They should openly inform you of any penalties that may be incurred in every situation of the agreement. You should avoid companies that have hidden prepayment penalties. It is important that you are aware and understand the terms and conditions of the company before you sign on the dotted line.

If you are leasing equipment from the company, ensure that it is new or in superb condition. Be aware that once you select a finance company that you are in a long term agreement. It is advisable that you go for a company that can give you the flexibility to change between the fixed and floating rates without charging you extra.