Options for Financing SMEs

by Andy Davis
access120 days access
cpd hours4 CPD hours

This course will enable you to:

  • Understand your options when it comes to financing growth in an SME
  • Navigate the complex ‘alternative finance’ market for SMEs
  • Have a good basic knowledge of the main debt and working capital products available to smaller companies
  • Understand issues around security and loan terms
  • Understand the major sources of equity finance and the conditions that accompany them
  • Be aware of regulatory and technological issues that are shaping the financing market

As it has got harder for SMEs to get finance from banks, the small business financing market has become much more diverse, with scores of new providers and a growing range of products. There's more choice which has made the market much more complex and difficult to navigate. Understanding what's available and what products are suitable for different businesses is crucial for you to provide good advice.

This course looks at the range of financing options available and helps you decide which ones are right for you and your clients.

The range of debt products

  • What is secured and unsecured debt?
  • Who provides small business loans?
  • What lending is available for property investors?
  • What is leasing and hire purchase?
  • How does asset-based lending work?
  • What are business cash advances?

Accessing working capital

  • What is trade credit and how does it work?
  • What is factoring and invoice discounting?
  • How does single invoice finance work?
  • What are revolving credit facilities?
  • How can purchase order and contract finance help a small business?
  • What is cross-border trade finance?
  • How does supplier finance work?
  • Mo and Simon's cash flow

Sourcing and negotiating finance

  • How can brokers and online finance platforms help?
  • How do lenders safeguard their interests?
  • What are the key areas for negotiation in loan agreements?
  • Are there any other options for owner-managers?
  • What is the bank appeals process and referral scheme?
  • What is financial data sharing and how can it help?

Equity funding and start-up loans

  • What are the main features of equity finance?
  • How are early-stage companies valued?
  • What are business angel networks?
  • What is equity crowdfunding?
  • How do venture capital funds and trusts work?
  • What schemes exist to for claiming tax reliefs on investments?
  • What are start-up loans?

Andy Davis is a writer on investment, finance and business. He spent 15 years as a journalist on the Financial Times, and held a series of senior roles including Development Editor and most recently editor of FT Weekend.

Andy writes for a range of newspapers and magazines and is the author of two research reports on alternative sources of finance for small businesses: the first Beyond the Banks report, published by Nesta, and Seeds of Change, published by the Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation. He has also appeared as a witness at the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards Sub-Committee A (Panel on the consumer and SME experience of banks).

He is an associate editor and investment columnist for Prospect, the monthly current affairs magazine, and has been named Personal Financial Journalist of the year in the Wincott Awards on the strength of his columns for Prospect.

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