Young businesses and start-ups that are looking to raise funding have a dizzying array of choices nowadays. In fact, there has probably never been a bigger range of places to go for early-stage finance, from crowdfunding and angel investors through to government-backed start-up loans and P2P lenders. (more…)
Most entrepreneurs really struggle to bring in investment without the proper tools to bolster their proposition. An engaging pitch deck is a key part of any successful fundraising strategy, so it’s vital to get it right.
With no clear consensus on what a great pitch deck for raising funds looks like, we asked funding expert, John Auckland to share the insight he has gleaned from a series of successful fundraisings. (more…)
There’s never been a better time to start or grow a business in the UK, with more funding options and tax incentives (for companies and investors) than ever before.
Crowdfunding is an option that more businesses are turning to, so if you’re looking to turn a great entrepreneurial idea into a reality, or to scale your business to the next level, here are five reasons why you should consider equity crowdfunding, plus some practical advice on how to succeed with your campaign; (more…)
Everybody understands that starting up a business from scratch is not a simple process or an easy challenge to take on. Regardless of how lofty your ambitions are or whether you’re aiming to establish yourself as a sole trader or as a the boss of a burgeoning new enterprise, finding access to initial and early-stage sources of finance is a vitally important step along the way towards sustainability and success.
Here’s a look at some of the most commonplace and most viable routes to finance currently available to startup businesses. (more…)
Christmas might be a time for giving, but the common perception is that it’s not a time for investing.
However, as John Auckland of TribeFirst reveals, funding statistics surprisingly show that December can be a great month to find investment for your business. (more…)
When you need to find business funding fast, what are your options and what are the quickest ways for you to secure more finance?
We talk you through the most viable fast funding options for SMEs who need finance in a hurry, and include practical tips on how to ensure your funding application goes as swiftly and smoothly as possible. (more…)
Getting funds together to accelerate your venture won’t be a quick task. Choosing the wrong fundraising activities can not only prolong the process, it can even deter investors from backing your business.
So, what are the most common mistakes entrepreneurs make when trying to bring in funding for their companies? (more…)
Finding a business loan used to be a pretty black and white affair. You’d call up your local bank and book an appointment, wait a few weeks (or months) and then sit down with the bank manager, explain why your business needed some money, and hope that you’d caught them after their morning coffee.
Since the birth of Alternative Finance, however, getting your hands on funding to grow your business has become a lot easier, but equally, a whole lot more complicated. This guide will explore the various different types of alternative finance out there, help you decide whether it’s a viable route for you, and how to prepare your business to raise finance. (more…)
When it comes to writing a business plan, there is one single golden rule that dwarfs all others – your business plan must address each of the key concerns of your potential backer.
If you fail on this first point, all the other things you should and shouldn’t do pale into insignificance and even a great business idea might fail to get backing it needs. A good business plan keeps the investor happy, so follow these 10 Dos and Don’ts to ratchet up your chances of success: (more…)
Put simply, Rewards Crowdfunding is the practice of giving lower cost or exclusive items as rewards to early adopters in return for their backing, while Equity Crowdfunding involves selling shares in your business.
To help you understand more about the pros and cons of Rewards and Equity Crowdfunding, and the key points for success, we asked crowdfunding expert, John Auckland of TribeFirst to explain more. (more…)
Look around at the world’s many unpredictable events and it could not be clearer that our political, and social, tectonics plates are shifting.
Fueled by the digital revolution of young technology adoptees who are now reaching adulthood, it is unsurprising that the connected generation is favouring the peer-to-peer model over outdated intermediaries. (more…)
One of the biggest obstacles to growth for start-up businesses is investment. Investors are often reluctant to commit their money to a new business with a promising idea but no track record of success.
Fortunately the Government lent a helping hand in 2012, and introduced the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) to help smaller, riskier companies attract investors willing to take a punt on a bright idea becoming a successful business. (more…)
Cash flow is the lifeblood of any business, and managing it effectively can mean the difference between make or break.
When we refer to cash flow management, we’re talking about making sure there is enough cash available to cover all your outgoing expenses. If your outgoings are more than your sales and you run out of cash to pay staff or suppliers, your business will risk insolvency. (more…)
The goal of any equity crowdfunding campaign is to catch the attention of investors and convince them that your business is worth backing.
But how does the mind of an investor work? (more…)
The Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) is designed to help smaller, risky businesses raise funding to fuel growth.
Early-stage businesses can find it difficult to secure investment, so the EIS was set up to encourage more investors to back fledgling businesses by offering generous tax-breaks.
To help you see whether the EIS could help you raise funding for your business, we asked award-winning chartered tax adviser, Jonathan Amponsah CTA FCCA to explain how it works. (more…)
When it comes to start-up investment, the UK has some of the best tax relief schemes anywhere in the world.
The Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS), along with its earlier-stage sibling the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS), offer protection of investments in UK start-ups. If the business fails, investors can claim up to 80% of the investment as tax relief against their income tax bill. (more…)
Whether you’re starting a business, or taking it to the next level, the right finance can be a significant factor in driving growth.
Perhaps the growth of your business depends upon the purchase of new equipment to enable you to increase capacity, provide additional services, or win a particular new contract. In that case, asset finance could be the key to unlocking your growth potential. (more…)
Ask a group business leaders, business owners, and entrepreneurs what their biggest business challenge is, and I’m confident you’d hear the same recurring thought: building their business in a sustainable, predictable, yet profitable way, quickly.
It’s a reality that most businesses never reach their full potential, always yearning for the thing that will catapult them into significance, but never really finding it.
So to help you in your business growth journey, we asked global growth authority, Royston Guest, to share his take on the ABC of business growth;
There are several ways to finance a business. These include bank loans, finance from independent lenders, and crowdfunding. Your capability of financing your business depends on convincing somebody else to invest in your idea and you. (more…)
Open Banking is here and is about to transform competition in the banking and funding arenas.
Since 13 January 2018 nine of the largest banks in the UK are governed by the new regulations introduced by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).
But what exactly is Open Banking, and how does it affect businesses across the UK? Here are five key facts you need to know about Open Banking: (more…)
“Any time is a good time to start a company“, so said renowned American angel investor Ron Conway. That may be true, but how easy is it to find the necessary funding?
The answer largely depends on your understanding of how fundraising should be done. (more…)
There’s a huge variety of finance solutions available to small businesses these days, and each have their own pros and cons.
What works for one business may not work for another, and you may use a number of different products to finance your cashflow, short-term projects, or long-term growth plans.
Many companies find business credit cards useful for the short-term end of the spectrum, and while you wouldn’t necessarily use one to pay for larger purchases, they can be a good tool for day-to-day spending, expense tracking, and perhaps emergency cashflow needs. (more…)
Building a successful new business is a roller-coaster. There will be days you know you couldn’t do anything else, and days you wish you did. Sometimes you’ll be on top of the world, but at other times it will be a struggle to drag yourself out of bed.
In the high-stakes world of starting a new business, only one thing is certain: everyone will make mistakes, but only those who learn from them will succeed.
So, to help you learn from these common errors, without making them yourself, here are 8 mistakes that startups frequently make;
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They might not have the catchiest name — but revolving credit facilities are one of the most useful types of business finance available.
Here’s everything you need to know about revolving credit facilities, and how they could help you fund your business. (more…)
Venture capital money going into technology companies in the UK is at an all-time high. A year post-Brexit referendum, British tech firms attracted £2.4bn in funding.
To date this year, UK fintech companies alone have seen £825m of VC investment. So, what do investors look for in tech start-ups and how do you get a slice of this funding for your technology venture? (more…)
Getting finance for your business is no longer just a case of approaching your high street bank manager and asking for a loan. The market is now much more varied, and boasts a huge range of products which have been tailored for more specific purposes. This means it’s easier than ever to find funding that fits your business – if you know where to look.
Asset finance is one such funding solution, but what exactly is asset finance and is it a good option for your business? (more…)
If you have approached your bank and found it difficult to secure the funds your business requires, you’re in good company. Banks are declining up to 50% of loan requests from some smaller businesses.
Banks’ lending decisions have very little to do with you or the prospects of your business. And their outdated processes and high costs of capital make it difficult for them to lend to smaller businesses.
Business owners are also being frustrated by the inability of banks to provide flexible forms of credit to businesses. This is highlighted by the fact that the availability of business overdrafts, long a favorite tool for businesses to smooth cash flow, has shrunk by more than 30%.
So where else can you get funding for your business?
Since the recession of 2008/2009, there has been a significant reduction in the ability of banks to lend to British SMEs.
Whilst mainstream finance is still great for some businesses, many banks now have lending criteria that small businesses are unable to fulfill.
Fortunately, ‘alternative finance’ can offer a viable substitute for entrepreneurs looking for innovative and flexible ways to fund their business growth.
But before blindly assuming alternative finance is the answer to all your financial woes, there are six things you need to understand before you approach an alternative finance provider looking for funding. (more…)
Business is a complicated old game sometimes. Just when you think you’ve got your head round one thing, you realise there’s another rule you didn’t know about!
Here’s a good example. Did you know it’s possible to get your business into serious financial trouble by selling too much?
When you are starting out in business, you need to quickly grasp that the three key factors that determine a company’s financial success, or failure, are:
- Control of costs
- Cash management
Two out of three simply won’t work – you need to have complete control over these three crucial aspects, otherwise your chances of succeeding in business will be very limited. (more…)
Most companies will face some kind of cash flow problem at some point. Temporary cash flow problems or financial squeezes usually arise out of matters that are outside of the immediate control of the directors, but when problems like this happen it’s vital you take the right steps and move quickly to ensure the issue doesn’t escalate.
To help you navigate safely through troubled financial waters, we’ve asked Richard Saville of Corporate Financial Services to set out the 10 key steps you need to consider when your business is faced with a financial problem. (more…)
Borrowing money from a bank to finance your business is a lot harder than getting a loan to buy a new car or to improve your home.
Banks have a number of tough rules that you need to know before you approach them for a business loan, and these rules have become even more stringent as a result of the credit crunch. (more…)
If you are looking to start a new business, there is a good chance that you will need some funding to get it off the ground.
Most businesses will have start-up costs, whether it’s securing premises, stock, equipment or hiring people, and they will all need paying for, so what options are there to fund a new business? (more…)
Many small business owners don’t know about the Bank Referral Scheme, but it represents a significant milestone for business funding in the UK.
You have a great business idea and you’re finally ready to make it a reality. However, the next obstacle you need to overcome is to find the funding you need to get your business off the ground. (more…)
The Albion Growth Report – a study of 1,000 SMEs which aims to explore the factors that help businesses grow and the issues that hold them back – has found that the popularity of bank loans and business overdrafts is declining.
Instead, business owners appear to be turning to equity finance and other long-term financing options in place of the traditional bank sources.