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?

Nutrition Studies – Common Curriculums

Find Nutrition Studies in the United States and Canada. Undergraduate nutrition studies frequently share common curriculums that are relatively comprehensive in nature. In most cases, nutrition studies involve broad and diverse subject matter including coursework in biology, essential nutrients, human growth and development, as well as other fundamental education.Additional nutrition studies branch out into several disciplines entailing mineral nutrition, exercise, and nutrition with regards to disease; lipids, metabolic and environmental health, and more. Ordinarily, nutrition studies cover coursework in dietetics, nutritional counseling, food and nutrition services management, sport nutrition, fitness and wellness.Laying the foundation with undergraduate nutrition studies helps students to further academic paths as they apply to graduate programs where they can earn a Master’s or Ph.D. degree in nutritional science, clinical nutrition, fitness and personal training, and wellness counseling, among others. That goes without saying that a number of nutrition studies can result in an Associates or Bachelor’s degree, as well as certification.Serving as part of the medical healthcare community, nutritionists may also opt to participate in holistic nutrition studies where they will gain an edge in integrative health and wellness. For example, holistic nutrition studies expand the professional dimensions of nutritionists who learn about TCM (traditional Chinese medicine), herbology, aromatherapy, and other complementary health services.Overall, it is never too late to achieve your healthcare training goals; and predicted to be one of the fastest growing occupations*, dieticians and nutritionists can anticipate rewarding outlooks – both personally and professionally.If you (or someone you know) are interested in finding nutrition studies, let professional training within fast-growing industries like massage therapy, cosmetology, acupuncture, oriental medicine, Reiki, and others get you started! Explore career school programs near you.Employment source: Bls.gov (US Bureau of Labor Statistics)Nutrition Studies: Common Curriculums┬ę Copyright 2007The CollegeBound NetworkAll Rights ReservedNOTICE: Article(s) may be republished free of charge to relevant websites, as long as Copyright and Author Resource Box are included; and ALL Hyperlinks REMAIN intact and active.

The Search For Great Natural Oily Skin Care Products

Do you have oily skin? Have you been searching for some great oily anti aging products specifically to deal with the problem? Let’s consider the nature of oily skin and consider a what can be done to provide good skin care to those who have it.Your skin produces it’s own natural oils. This occurs in the sebaceous glands and the natural oil produced is called sebum. For some people the production of sebum occurs at a much greater rate than for others. There are many for whom dry skin is a problem.For sufferers the result is often a film of oil across the surface of your face and sometimes an increase in acne and blackheads.There are many oily anti aging products on the market. However it’s true to say that many do not work effectively and also it is fair to say that the best products for caring for skin with too much oil are not made for skin with too much oil at all.There are several problems with mainstream big brand oily skin products. The first is that they can often contain mineral oil. This is a petrochemical product that has been linked to various health problems and skin allergies and irritation. It is used purely because it is extremely cheap.Mineral oil forms a film across the surface of the skin, clogs the pores and can lead to an increase in acne. Anyone interested in seriously good quality skin care products should always examine the label and reject any products that contain mineral oil, no matter what skin type they have.Secondly there are many anti aging products that contain alcohol. Alcohol dries your skin. If you have a problem of skin with too much oil you might think it fair to assume that anything that dries your skin must be good. In fact the reverse is true. Drying the skin actually stimulates the skin to produce more oil and can worsen the problem.Most modern anti aging products are not good for oily skin just as they are not good for other skin types. In fact the best natural oily skin care products are not manufactured for treating oily skin at all. It’s just that they use ingredients which are equally good for all skin types.Natural skin care products do not contain harsh chemical ingredients such as mineral oil and alcohol. The very best natural skin care products contain such ingredients as extracts of seaweed, specialised formulations of Coenzyme Q10 and a particular patented ingredient manufactured from the wool of sheep. These products do not encourage the overproduction of skin oils and work exceptionally well on all skin types.In fact the company that makes these products does not even manufacture oily skin products because it doesn’t need to. Rather it produces a single range of top quality skin care products that work on all skin types.So if you have oily skin there is 2 things that you need do. You need to avoid mainstream big brand skin care products that contain, in particular, mineral oil and alcohol. And you need to search for natural anti aging products containing ingredients that are effective for optimum skin care across all skin types.If you’d like to find out where to source the worlds best natural oily skin care products that aren’t oily skin care products at all visit my website.

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