Alternative Financing Vs. Venture Capital: Which Option Is Best for Boosting Working Capital?

There are several potential financing options available to cash-strapped businesses that need a healthy dose of working capital. A bank loan or line of credit is often the first option that owners think of – and for businesses that qualify, this may be the best option.

In today’s uncertain business, economic and regulatory environment, qualifying for a bank loan can be difficult – especially for start-up companies and those that have experienced any type of financial difficulty. Sometimes, owners of businesses that don’t qualify for a bank loan decide that seeking venture capital or bringing on equity investors are other viable options.

But are they really? While there are some potential benefits to bringing venture capital and so-called “angel” investors into your business, there are drawbacks as well. Unfortunately, owners sometimes don’t think about these drawbacks until the ink has dried on a contract with a venture capitalist or angel investor – and it’s too late to back out of the deal.

Different Types of Financing

One problem with bringing in equity investors to help provide a working capital boost is that working capital and equity are really two different types of financing.

Working capital – or the money that is used to pay business expenses incurred during the time lag until cash from sales (or accounts receivable) is collected – is short-term in nature, so it should be financed via a short-term financing tool. Equity, however, should generally be used to finance rapid growth, business expansion, acquisitions or the purchase of long-term assets, which are defined as assets that are repaid over more than one 12-month business cycle.

But the biggest drawback to bringing equity investors into your business is a potential loss of control. When you sell equity (or shares) in your business to venture capitalists or angels, you are giving up a percentage of ownership in your business, and you may be doing so at an inopportune time. With this dilution of ownership most often comes a loss of control over some or all of the most important business decisions that must be made.

Sometimes, owners are enticed to sell equity by the fact that there is little (if any) out-of-pocket expense. Unlike debt financing, you don’t usually pay interest with equity financing. The equity investor gains its return via the ownership stake gained in your business. But the long-term “cost” of selling equity is always much higher than the short-term cost of debt, in terms of both actual cash cost as well as soft costs like the loss of control and stewardship of your company and the potential future value of the ownership shares that are sold.

Alternative Financing Solutions

But what if your business needs working capital and you don’t qualify for a bank loan or line of credit? Alternative financing solutions are often appropriate for injecting working capital into businesses in this situation. Three of the most common types of alternative financing used by such businesses are:

1. Full-Service Factoring – Businesses sell outstanding accounts receivable on an ongoing basis to a commercial finance (or factoring) company at a discount. The factoring company then manages the receivable until it is paid. Factoring is a well-established and accepted method of temporary alternative finance that is especially well-suited for rapidly growing companies and those with customer concentrations.

2. Accounts Receivable (A/R) Financing – A/R financing is an ideal solution for companies that are not yet bankable but have a stable financial condition and a more diverse customer base. Here, the business provides details on all accounts receivable and pledges those assets as collateral. The proceeds of those receivables are sent to a lockbox while the finance company calculates a borrowing base to determine the amount the company can borrow. When the borrower needs money, it makes an advance request and the finance company advances money using a percentage of the accounts receivable.

3. Asset-Based Lending (ABL) – This is a credit facility secured by all of a company’s assets, which may include A/R, equipment and inventory. Unlike with factoring, the business continues to manage and collect its own receivables and submits collateral reports on an ongoing basis to the finance company, which will review and periodically audit the reports.

In addition to providing working capital and enabling owners to maintain business control, alternative financing may provide other benefits as well:

It’s easy to determine the exact cost of financing and obtain an increase.
Professional collateral management can be included depending on the facility type and the lender.
Real-time, online interactive reporting is often available.
It may provide the business with access to more capital.
It’s flexible – financing ebbs and flows with the business’ needs.
It’s important to note that there are some circumstances in which equity is a viable and attractive financing solution. This is especially true in cases of business expansion and acquisition and new product launches – these are capital needs that are not generally well suited to debt financing. However, equity is not usually the appropriate financing solution to solve a working capital problem or help plug a cash-flow gap.

A Precious Commodity

Remember that business equity is a precious commodity that should only be considered under the right circumstances and at the right time. When equity financing is sought, ideally this should be done at a time when the company has good growth prospects and a significant cash need for this growth. Ideally, majority ownership (and thus, absolute control) should remain with the company founder(s).

Alternative financing solutions like factoring, A/R financing and ABL can provide the working capital boost many cash-strapped businesses that don’t qualify for bank financing need – without diluting ownership and possibly giving up business control at an inopportune time for the owner. If and when these companies become bankable later, it’s often an easy transition to a traditional bank line of credit. Your banker may be able to refer you to a commercial finance company that can offer the right type of alternative financing solution for your particular situation.

Taking the time to understand all the different financing options available to your business, and the pros and cons of each, is the best way to make sure you choose the best option for your business. The use of alternative financing can help your company grow without diluting your ownership. After all, it’s your business – shouldn’t you keep as much of it as possible?

Internet Pharmacy – An Ideal Platform For Drug Purchase

Getting the prescribed medicines from a nearby community drugstore had long been the only option for us. But now, Internet pharmacies have become a far better alternative. Internet pharmacies go a long way in meeting patient’s demands than what the traditional pharmacies could. A good online pharmacy entitles us to a host of benefits and services that the age-old community drugstores are incapable of providing in the near future. Online pharmacies outclass the traditional ones on more than a single ground.A lot of patients suffer from ailments that they do not wish to make public. It could even be embarrassing for some to publicly buy such drugs at a community drugstore. Conversely, they can buy similar drugs through an Internet pharmacy. The ordering process is easy, secure and confidential. No need to go out of the house to queue up near a drugstore; just fill in the online order form available in the internet pharmacy’s website and wait for the drug to be delivered right at your doorsteps.Most of us have a busy lifestyle. We need to take some time out for activities that are not a part of our daily routine. To get the drugs from a nearby drugstore, we need to find time to go out and buy them. Furthermore, there are patients who are too weak to move out. Such patients need to depend on others’ help to procure drugs from the nearest store. An Internet pharmacy, on the other hand, not only save our time but also reduces the effort needed to go to a drugstore. Whether at home, office, or anywhere else, all we need is to login to an online pharmacy website and place an order.The cost of medicines is an essential point of consideration for the patients. Online pharmacies offer drugs at a far cheaper rate than that of the traditional ones. The difference in price is due to the high overhead costs incurred by the community drugstores. Conversely, an online pharmacy does not have similar magnitude of infrastructure or operational costs. Furthermore, online pharmacies operating from Canada offer attractive discounts as compared to others. This is due to the price regulations of prescription medicines by the Canadian government. Such discounts can be as high as 70%!Safety, security, confidentiality, low prices and good product quality is what drives most patients to login to an online pharmacy. However patients should be careful to check out the legitimacy of the pharmacy. Internet pharmacies have become a booming business and a lot of people try to cash in this opportunity by promising the best and offering the worst. Legal online pharmacies are authorized by an external authoritative agency. Most legitimate Internet pharmacies provide a link to such an agency in support of their authenticity. People should check out for such links. Apart from that, it is always better to stay away from pharmacies that have broken links and look badly managed. Such pharmacies, in all probability, are the ones to stay away from. Online Canadian drug pharmacies are truly the best place to order medicines from; however, just do a bit of research beforehand to crosscheck its legitimacy.

Choosing the Right SEO Company for Good SEO Results

SEO Company – Authentic Solution to Enhance Online BusinessThe role of an SEO company is very important when it comes to promoting your online business. According to current day trends in internet marketing, it is essential to choose the right SEO service provider for good results. Some common responsibilities of an SEO company include website design, creation of back links, content writing, website optimization, directory submissions, video creation, press releases, blog posts, selection of suitable keywords, and much more.How to Identify a Professional SEO Firm?A professional SEO company is capable of delivering the best results to satisfy the requirements of clients. By availing of the services of professionals in the SEO field, you can enhance your website rankings and online presence. SEO experts are well-versed in the latest techniques that will help in achieving high ranks for your website in search engine result pages.Certain things are to be confirmed before signing a contract with an SEO company.

Credibility – Check the authenticity of the SEO firm. Ensure that it can deliver quality SEO services in accordance with your demands.

Experience – Experience in the field always matters with regard to delivering quality output without errors. Do background research about the firm to ensure its consistency, reliability and confidentiality.

Affordable solutions – Compare the price tags of different SEO companies to select an affordable, professional SEO company.

SEO techniques – A professional SEO firm implements the latest SEO strategies to bring about optimum results for client websites.

Expert workforce – Eminent and experienced team of employees are the backbone the company. They are dedicated to performing various tasks accurately and consistently to satisfy the website requirements and goals. They often focus on creating brand awareness and enhance your online revenue by placing your website in top positions in search engines.

Customer relationship – A professional SEO service provider always give preference to customer care and round the clock customer support. They also keep in contact with you to inform about SEO developments and current market trends.

Client testimonials/feedback – Portfolios of clients help to identify the best service provider out of many. Also, check the authenticity of feedbacks and testimonials posted on the website.

High profile client list – Evaluate the success stories of previous projects for well-known clients. Analyze the procedures involved in completing a particular project.

Seek the advice of business partners or relatives- Talk with people who have already used search engine optimization services to make an informed decision.
Relevance of an SEO companyYou must clearly set your goals about search engine optimization services to improve website traffic and search engine rankings. SEO services help to integrate your website with social networking sites for international brand recognition to generate leads and increase online sales. Hence take enough time and choose the right SEO Company for good SEO results that will fuel the business growth in the long-run and help avoid wastage of money and time.