A Bumpy Ride For Business Financing

Based on how chaotic the commercial banking climate is currently, the situation described in this article is expected to prevail for a long (but unpredictable) period of time. In spite of the confusing and frustrating commercial loans environment, a prudent business financing strategy is likely to produce the most effective results that can be hoped for by small business owners. With working capital financing and business loans, commercial borrowers need to be prepared for a long and bumpy ride.

Misinformation and insufficient information will play a somewhat unpredictable role in achieving the desired outcome of business borrowers finding appropriate commercial finance solutions. The eventual success of commercial financing efforts will depend on an individualized and detailed assessment of the unique financial circumstances for a specific business, although it is appropriate to note that there are new and effective business loan options that will satisfactorily fill the commercial funding gap for many small business owners impacted by their current ineffective commercial bankers.

Anticipating the long and bumpy ride that lies ahead for even the most ordinary business financing request will be prudent and wise for small businesses. It has not been unusual for commercial borrowers to wait for one to two months before their bank finally declines to make a commercial loan that had appeared to be a mere formality when the lending process began, either because banks do not want to publicly admit that they are not presently making business loans or perhaps due to their somewhat secretive and changing guidelines for making such loans. Regardless of their prior description of “normal” for working capital management and commercial financing options, many business owners have already discovered how much and how quickly this has changed.

A prevailing banking climate that is characterized by misinformation as well as insufficient information about current commercial finance options for small businesses provides sufficient rationale for describing the journey to business financing success as being both long and bumpy. After they have finally been informed by their current bank that needed business finance help is not forthcoming, because they simply do not have enough information to successfully complete their task, a small business owner might be unsuccessful in their attempt to find a new source of commercial funding in one typical scenario involving insufficient information. When a commercial banker misleads a prospective business borrower by advising the business owner that the bank will be able to help in providing an unsecured working capital loan when the banker has already been told by senior bank officials that such financing will not be provided except for specific established business clients, this is an increasingly frequent misinformation scenario. Most banks are in fact eliminating or reducing working capital financing to small businesses as indicated by one public report after another.

Factoring and Accounts Receivable Financing Expert Tips

There probably isn’t a day when Canadian business owners and financial managers don’t hear about factoring and accounts receivable financing as a method of financing their business in Canada. Despite its growing popularity and, we can say, relative importance in the Canadian business financing marketplace this financing mechanism is still somewhat understood.

What information do business owners need to know in order to assess if factoring, also known as invoice discounting, is a viable transaction? Also, are there mistakes and pitfalls to be avoided when considering this financing strategy?

Let’s examine the answers to some of those questions. You can be forgiven for trying to figure out why factoring has increased in prominence from a time when no one had almost ever heard of it! The answer to that popularity is more simply and obvious than you might think, and its simply that Canadian chartered banks are finding it increasingly more difficult to fund accounts receivable (and inventory of course) to the extent that their customers need this financing.

When you have a situation where the actual need for financing is acute, and the benefits and flexibility seems significant it is not hard to see the rise in popularity of such a financing mechanism.

First of all, 99% of the time, factoring provides your firm with a greater level of borrowing based on your accounts receivable levels. Quite of 90-100% of you’re A/R under 90 days can be financed.

So is it all good news? Not necessarily, as we are always meeting with clients that have chosen the wrong type of funding or factoring, and, even worse, find them locked into contracts they cannot get out of. That is uncomfortable for any size firm as you can imagine.

As with any newer type of financing the playing field is complex. You can be forgiven for not knowing how many factor firms are out there, how they run, what their own limitations are, and, even to a certain extent, do they in fact themselves have the funding to survive, let along finance your firm. For that reason we cannot over emphasize the need to work with a credible, experienced and trusted professional in this area.

Lets talk about some of the nuances, we can call them potential ‘pitfalls ‘also, of picking the wrong factoring partner. For a starter if you choose a firm who itself is not well capitalized, as we said, you might find that the financing commitments made to you cannot be honored. Canadian business has never had to think that the Canadian chartered banks could be ‘out of money ‘but the Canadian landscape is somewhat littered with small and medium sized factor firms that do not have the financial wherewithal to support their funding commitments in all places. That just re – enforces our idea that a trusted industry expert will guide you to the best partner for your firm.

Other issues, again, we can call them pitfalls, to look for include:

- being locked into a contract

- having the total factoring cost, or pricing, not reflected properly in your term sheet

- advance rates which don’t make sense relative to the price you are paying for discounting invoices

- excessive notification and intrusion with your customers, which is very prevalent in the U.S. model of factoring (Many Canadian factor firms are branches of U.S. firms)

Why Early-Stage Startup Companies Should Hire a Lawyer

Many startup companies believe that they do not need a lawyer to help them with their business dealings. In the early stages, this may be true. However, as time goes on and your company grows, you will find yourself in situations where it is necessary to hire a business lawyer and begin to understand all the many benefits that come with hiring a lawyer for your legal needs.

The most straightforward approach to avoid any future legal issues is to employ a startup lawyer who is well-versed in your state’s company regulations and best practices. In addition, working with an attorney can help you better understand small company law. So, how can a startup lawyer help you in ensuring that your company’s launch runs smoothly?

They Know What’s Best for You

Lawyers that have experience with startups usually have worked in prestigious law firms, and as general counsel for significant corporations.

Their strategy creates more efficient, responsive, and, ultimately, more successful solutions – relies heavily on this high degree of broad legal and commercial knowledge.

They prioritize learning about a clients’ businesses and interests and obtaining the necessary outcomes as quickly as feasible.

Also, they provide an insider’s viewpoint and an intelligent methodology to produce agile, creative solutions for their clients, based on their many years of expertise as attorneys and experience dealing with corporations.

They Contribute to the Increase in the Value of Your Business

Startup attorneys help represent a wide range of entrepreneurs, operating companies, venture capital firms, and financiers in the education, fashion, finance, health care, internet, social media, technology, real estate, and television sectors.

They specialize in mergers and acquisitions as well as working with companies that have newly entered a market. They also can manage real estate, securities offerings, and SEC compliance, technology transactions, financing, employment, entertainment and media, and commercial contracts, among other things.

Focusing on success must include delivering the highest levels of representation in resolving the legal and business difficulties confronting clients now, tomorrow, and in the future, based on an unwavering dedication to the firm’s fundamental principles of quality, responsiveness, and business-centric service.

Wrapping Up

All in all, introducing a startup business can be overwhelming. You’re already charged with a host of responsibilities in which you’re untrained as a business owner. Legal problems are notoriously difficult to solve, and interpreting “legalese” is sometimes required. Experienced business lawyers know these complexities and can help you navigate them to avoid stumbling blocks.

Although many company owners wait until the last minute to deal with legal issues, they would benefit or profit greatly from hiring an experienced startup lawyer even before they begin. Reputable startup lawyers can give essential legal guidance, assist entrepreneurs in avoiding legal hazards, and improve their prospects of becoming a successful company.