Category: Cash Flow Solutions

Case Study – Confidential Invoice Discounting – Food Manufacturer

Established specialist food manufacturing company that had recently won several new contracts with multiple retailers.  Approached Orchard Business Finance for advice on how to take pressure off their cash flow and smooth out monthly peaks and troughs.

The company turnover stood at around £6 million and staffing levels fluctuated between twenty and forty staff dependent on the season.  Although the company had no financial problems there was borrowing in the form of Unsecured Business Loans and Asset Finance.  As a result, lenders approached direct by the Directors weren’t prepared to offer any further funding facilities.

We sat down with the Directors and talked through all aspects of their business and the pressures being experienced along with future growth plans and their requirements to grow the business. It became apparent very quickly that the cash flow problems were being caused.  As the result of average customer contracted payment terms being 77 days; purchase ledger showing average payments being made on 98 days; and three crunch payment dates during the month with the first being lenders payments, the second supplier payments and finally payroll.

The Directors recognised that average payments of 98 days were the main cause of the cash flow peaks and troughs.  Most importantly and despite the company being financially stable and having good contracts the Directors realised that they were financially vulnerable if they couldn’t smooth out the peaks and troughs.

As a solution we suggested Confidential Invoice Discounting as this would enable the Directors to drawdown up to 85% of the invoice value within 24 hours of it being issued. There was a level of reluctance initially as the Directors considered CID to be an expensive form of Invoice Finance. Once we explained how a CID facility operates and that it only becomes expensive if it’s used irresponsibly the Directors decided to proceed.

One of our trusted lenders offered this food manufacturing company a Confidential Invoice Discounting facility that allowed them to drawdown up to 85% of the invoice value and agreed a facility of £500,000 which also included payment protection and Director personal guarantees that were restricted.

Following a review with the Directors they are happy with the facility as they can now manage monthly supplier, finance and payroll payments with confidence. Additionally, they have been able to confidently approach other retailers and expand distribution of their product.

Spotlight On – Selective Invoice Finance

What is Selective Invoice Finance?

Selective invoice finance is an alternative to more traditional invoice finance where you must process all invoices through the facility.  This type of invoice finance facility is also known as single or spot factoring.  Selective invoice finance enables businesses to release funds tied up in individual unpaid invoices. By using the facility on an invoice to invoice basis, you are able to access funds quickly when and as cash injections are required.

How does it work?

It’s fairly straight forward and simple. The first step is to identify the invoice or invoices you wish to factor. Approval is then required for factoring the chosen invoices and the finance provider will confirm the fee. Dependent on your business sector you can receive up to 95% of the value of the invoice. The funds are normally available within 24 hours of invoice submission.  The invoice balance less the lenders fee is paid when the customers pays the invoice in full.

What are the differences between Spot, Single and Selective Invoice Finance?

There is no difference, all these terms are used to describe Selective Invoice Finance.

What are the advantages?

Selective Invoice Finance is often used to support cash flow at key points during the month. For example, to meet payroll and supplier payments. It can also be used for the purchase of business assets or just used to smooth out cash flow peak and troughs. The funds are available quickly and you are not tied into a twelve-month contract as with more traditional Invoice Finance.

What are the disadvantages?

It can be more expensive than traditional Invoice Finance Facilities where you are tied into a twelve- month contract and must process all sales invoices through the facility.

What businesses qualify?

This varies from lender to lender but normally all trading styles qualify although there are often requirements for a minimum level of turnover or projected turnover.

Can I apply with bad credit?

You can apply with bad credit but will still need to satisfy lenders underwriting criteria.

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