Safeguard Future Growth for Your Small Business in this Booming Economy

05:26 31 December in Blog, Business Funding

 

During times of strong economic growth, it is easy to lose sight of the fact that eventually, we will see a slow-down. There are some steps you can take today which can help you during the next economic downturn by taking advantage of the current booming economy.

Tackle Your Outstanding Debt

One of the best ways to prepare for the inevitable downturn in the economy is to take care of your debts while the economy is booming. Handling your debt now can help prepare you when business starts slowing down. You will be in a better financial situation if you have less debt.

Consider Upgrading Equipment

Every business depends on their equipment operating successfully to meet customer demand. If you have business equipment which is no longer operating at peak performance, this is the best possible time to consider upgrading. Whether you lease or buy, upgrading will prepare you to better meet your customer’s needs.

Review Your Business Plans and Goals

If you have not recently reviewed your business plan, this is the ideal time to undertake that task. You should be looking at how you have met the goals you initially laid out, and if you have missed any of those goals, determine why. This is also a good time to review your plan for possible diversification opportunities. Keep in mind, the more diversified your offerings, the more likely you will to thrive in a future recession.

Hire the Best Talent

Today, while your business is facing a strong outlook is the time to find the right talent you may need tomorrow to continue to grow your business. This is particularly important if your business goals have changed slightly. Since the labor markets are tight, this process may take longer than you think.

Explore New Opportunities

This is a great time to increase your marketing and expand your footprint. During a booming economy, you can identify new markets, new customers and begin negotiations. Each of these steps will help you increase your business and safeguard your future growth.

Do an Internal Processes Audit

Take advantage of the booming economy to see where you can improve your business processes. The time you spend today to make sure you are maximizing production while maintaining the highest level of quality can help ensure that when the inevitable slow-down occurs, you are positioned as a leader in your industry.

Position Yourself for Future Funding Needs

Even though you may not need funds to manage your cash flow today, you can prepare yourself for the future. One of the biggest pitfalls to business growth is having access to the capital you will need. While you are encouraged to pay down debt during an economic boom, you should plan for your future funding needs during the same time period.

You may be unaware you do not have to take on new debt in order to finance future business growth. In fact, there are numerous options you can use including invoice factoring, purchase order financing, and more. Since you will be hesitant to take on new debt once business slows down, now is the right time to begin preparing for your future capital needs.

Capstone Capital Group has a dedicated team committed to helping businesses achieve their goals. We can help with a range of financial solutions and help you take advantage of the opportunities you have during a booming economy. We can also help provide solutions which will help you through periods of slow growth when cash flow is challenging. Remember, a booming economy will not last forever. You can take steps today to ensure when this latest boom starts slowing down that your business will be prepared.

 

Understanding Borrowing Against Accounts Receivables

09:00 16 May in Blog, Business Funding

Small and medium-sized businesses often face temporary cash flow problems, especially if they don’t understand borrowing against accounts receivables. The difference in time between issuing an invoice and getting paid for that invoice is often between 30 and 90 days. This delay in receiving payment can result in a business facing challenges purchasing new material for products, meeting payroll obligations, or meeting monthly expenses such as utilities or rent.

In these cases, meeting cash flow requirements is a necessity and businesses often turn to accounts receivable financing as an option. Some business owners avoid this type of financing because they do not understand what it means or how it works.

Accounts Receivable Factoring

There are two separate options a business owner can use to borrow money against their accounts receivable.

One is to work with a factoring company who takes control of your receivables. Using this method, a company delivers products, sends clients their invoices and the factoring company advances the company a portion of their invoices. The client in turn pays the invoice to the factoring company and once payment is received, the factoring company pays the business the balance of the invoice less their fees.

In most cases, this type of factoring involves a long-term contract between the factoring company and the business.

Spot Accounts Receivable Financing

Another common way to get cash against accounts receivable is known as spot factoring. This method of borrowing against accounts receivables is used when a business needs an immediate infusion of cash for any purpose.

For example, a business may have taken on a new contract and needs cash to purchase materials to fulfill that contract. Instead of borrowing money from the bank, the business owner decides to factor one or more of their client’s invoices.

The advantage of this type of financing is the company does not have to have a long-term contract, they get to decide which accounts receivables to factor, and they get the cash they need, typically within a few business days.

Impact on Balance Sheet

One of the reasons a business owner may opt to borrow against their accounts receivable rather than taking out a loan is the impact on their balance sheet.

When a company factors their invoices, they get an infusion of cash which shows as a positive on their balance sheet, and they do not take on any new debt.

The other advantage of accounts receivable financing is a company typically does not have to sacrifice partial ownership of their company to get much-needed capital as they may have to with other types of financing.

Borrowing Against Accounts Receivables Advantages Over Traditional Borrowing

One advantage a company will find when they opt to borrow against accounts receivables is the time it takes to access funds. A traditional factoring situation means a company often has access to cash within a few days of submitting their invoices to the factoring company. With a traditional loan, borrowers can wait weeks, and in some cases, months before getting approval for a loan.

For most company owners, the other advantage of factoring over typical bank loans is restrictions on how funds are used. When a company applies for a bank loan, the bank may place limits on how the funds may be used which can tie the hands of a business owner. You know best what you need funds for and when you borrow money against your accounts receivable, the factoring company typically does not place restrictions on how the funds you receive are used.

Capstone Capital Groups offers a range of accounts receivable financing options for small and medium-size business owners. Contact us today by email at [email protected] or call us at (212) 755-3636 and let us see how we can help you better manage your cash flow by helping you borrow against your accounts receivable.

Understanding Non Recourse Factoring

12:21 16 April in Blog, Business Funding

Like any type of financing, accounts receivable factoring is a risk taken by the factoring company. In most cases, accounts receivable factoring is based on the creditworthiness of the underlying customer. Therefore, a factoring company does not provide financing for invoices that are made to an individual customer, instead they provide funding against invoices made to other companies, or to government entities. This is why we need to understand non recourse factoring.

Collection Activities and B2B Transactions

Typically, when businesses are completing transactions, they offer terms that may give a company up to 90 days to make payment.

In some instances, they offer discounts if an invoice is paid sooner. In the case where a company has opted to factor their accounts receivable, they turn the risk, and collection activities over to the factoring company. However, what happens when the customer does not pay their invoice?

If a company is managing their own accounts receivable, they may put forward demand notices, and hold the company responsible for paying the invoice with certain late charges which are normally laid out in their contract. Many contracts also have a recourse clause which may hold the company owners accountable personally for unpaid bills.

If payments are not made as agreed, you would typically stop doing business with the company until the invoice was paid in full. Chances are, you would likely require a deposit or full payment before doing additional business with the company. This is known as full recourse.

Meaning of Non Recourse Factoring

But, what happens if you are working with a factor and they have offered to factor your receivables with no recourse?

First, it is important to understand what no recourse means. In most factoring contracts, no recourse usually means that the factoring company will not seek payment from you under certain conditions.

The typical condition is the insolvency of the customer that occurs during the time of the factoring period.

For example, if you have issued an invoice that is due in 90 days, and a factoring company has advanced you cash against that invoice, the company would have to go out of business during the 90 day period between issuing the invoice and having the payment due.

What Non Recourse Factoring Does Not Cover

Even if your factoring company has agreed to factor your receivables without recourse, there are certain exclusions which you should be aware of. For example, in most cases, factoring advances will not be considered without recourse if:

  • There is a dispute over an invoice – if you have issued an invoice and your customer disputes the invoice, chances are, the factoring company will not allow you to walk away from the debt you incurred because of factoring.
  • You deliver products to non-paying customers – if you have a customer who has been consistently late paying invoices and you are still delivering product to them, you are increasing their outstanding amount owed, meaning the factoring company is at even more risk of losing money. Most of the time, you will be held responsible for these invoices.
  • You owe the company money – if you have a reciprocal arrangement with a company you do business with, and the company credits amounts you owe them against amounts they owe you, the factoring company may not grant you the ability to factor those invoices without recourse.

When entering into a factoring contract, it is important to understand the terms you are agreeing to abide by.

We make sure our contracts are easy to understand and you understand whether you are accepting funding against your receivables with or without recourse.

Capstone is a private finance company offering various solutions to businesses to provide them with more consistent cash flow.

Contact us today to request funding or to speak with one of our representatives to learn more about how Capstone can help your business grow and flourish.

Number One Threat to Long-Term Economic Growth - Explained by Capstone

This is the Number One Threat to Long-Term Economic Growth

12:10 07 August in Blog

Amid positive job reports and a surging stock market, one factor still presents a major obstacle to long-term economic growth in the US: a persistent slackening of productivity. We are currently in the midsts of the longest downward slide in worker productivity since the 1970’s, an unfortunate asterisk that should accompany the latest round of job reports. It’s also likely to keep the Fed from raising interest rates any time in the near future.

Productivity by the Numbers

Productivity — the measure of what goods and services a worker produces each hour on the job — fell 0.5% at a seasonally adjusted rate during the second quarter, according to the Labor Department. That marks the third consecutive quarterly drop in productivity, the longest streak since 1979. What’s worse, the trend shows few signs of abating; productivity growth rang in at just 1.7% from 2007 to 2015, half that of 2000 through 2007.

Why Worker Productivity Matters

For business owners, the importance of worker productivity can’t be understated. The equation is simple: less productivity means more expenses and less profit. On a macro level, productivity is a key gauge in measuring wage growth, prices, and overall economic output — which have all been falling as well.

What’s Killing Productivity?

According to numerous studies, lagging productivity has several culprits. Among the most important are businesses unwillingness to invest in new equipment, machinery, and equipment — the raw materials that translate directly into job growth, wage growth, and gains in worker efficiency and productivity. While the exact cause of lagging productivity is difficult to nail down, it’s worth noting that fixed nonresidential investment, the meat and potatoes of business spending, has also dropped the last three quarters along with productivity.

That lack of investment has lead to a decline in new orders for nondefense capital goods on a year-over-year basis for much of the last year and a half.

What’s the Solution?

As we mentioned in our most recent blog, the majority of US manufacturers are small businesses — and many find themselves sorely lacking the working capital needed to invest in their businesses, jump-start productivity, create backlogs, and grow. As a low-risk remedy, manufacturers and other small businesses with strong demand for their products use invoice factoring to boost their cash flow. That’s where Capstone can help!

Grow Your Business with Capstone

For qualified clients, Capstone provides purchase order factoring, single invoice and full-contract factoring for work performed under contract with credit-worthy accounts. We have highly experienced professionals on staff to facilitate the purchase of work in progress and progress billing-related accounts receivable. Please visit our homepage or contact us directly for more information.

Novel Way for Subcontractors to Find Financing from Capstone

A Novel Way for Subcontractors to Find Financing

20:13 11 May in Blog

Novel Way for Subcontractors to Find Financing from Capstone2015 was a picture-perfect year for construction, a banner year for the post-recession. Yet in 2016, many contractors in the United States are struggling to find financing for construction projects.

The lack of financing has been a reality even over the past several years with the economy recovering by leaps and bounds. It was a reality throughout the housing crisis and even prior to the recession when construction and development were booming. Contractor business financing has been a struggle, but it’s clearly nothing new.

Banks’ Aversion to Construction Financing

Banks are perennially gun-shy when it comes to lending to construction firms. They cite the industry’s volatile revenue fluctuations, the unpredictable nature of construction, contractors’ sensitivity to economic cycles, and excess competition as reason to stay away. The recent failure of several prominent construction firms has only strengthened banks’ resolve to avoid offering lines of credit to construction firms, contractors and subcontractors.

Contractors & Underwriting Issues

Steady bank relationships are often out of reach for construction firms with a poor ratio of accounts receivable to accounts payable and limited liquidity in working capital. But when construction firms and contractors struggle to find financing, subcontractors tend to suffer even more. Banks are hesitant to allow subcontractors’ bonded accounts receivable to serve as collateral for lines of credit, and those who primarily engage in bonded work often find it difficult or impossible to provide additional collateral.

Is there any hope for subcontractors in today’s construction industry?

Factoring: A Solution for Subcontractors

Factoring is a finance technique that allows a company to leverage its accounts receivable and accelerate its working capital through the sale of its accounts receivable to a third party. Specifically, a factor gives a business an advance on a customer invoice — generally between 70 to 90% of the invoice amount – so they can create a backlog of work without equity or debt financing. As the company improves their balance sheet, they increase the likelihood of receiving a traditional line of credit from a bank.

Seize Opportunities for Growth with Capstone

For qualified subcontractors, Capstone offers contractor financing and provides a single invoice and full-contract factoring for work performed under contract with a creditworthy general contractor. Capstone has highly experienced construction professionals on staff to facilitate the purchase of construction-related accounts receivable. To learn more about our contractor business financing and other services, please visit our homepage.

Benefits of Trade Financing

Four Undeniable Benefits of Trade Financing

18:14 17 September in Blog

The trade financing market is valued at around 10 trillion dollars. The question is: how do you align your business to profit from it? More importantly, what is trade financing, and how does it work?

What is Trade Financing? 

In today’s global economy, having an international clientele can mean the difference between business success and business failure. Trade financing is a kind of loan that provides the credit needed to fund international trade.

Here are a few examples of how it works. Let’s say you identify a growing market for your product in Europe, but don’t have the funds to fill orders there. A trade financing agreement will allow you to do it. What if you find a cheaper supplier in Asia, but the shipping costs are too expensive? Trade financing solutions will allow you to start buying the goods right away and repay the loan with the earnings from your new international partnership.

Other Benefits of Trade Financing

1.    Flexibility

Nothing is worse than seeing an opportunity and not being able to take it. Trade financing gives your business the breathing room it needs to grow when the opportunity presents itself. As such, payments can be made to the supplier in their local currency. And repayment is also tailored to the borrowers’ needs. Some agreements call for repayment in 30 to 60 days, while others allow up to four months.

2.    Convenience

Unlike a traditional bank or business loan, trade financing requires very little documentation. Trade financing contracts are clear-cut and straightforward, so you won’t end up getting surprise fees at the end of the transaction. When you work with Capstone, we focus on providing a convenient, excellent experience.

3.    Security

Making transactions with foreign companies may be outside your usual scope. Capstone has years of experience connecting domestic and international businesses, and we’ll be able to give you all the guidance you need.  Both you and your client will have the peace of mind of working with a security guarantee from a renowned financial institution.

4.    Transaction Flow

Funds are available almost immediately, which means you can improve your transaction flow. You’ll be able to keep your inventory or stock without having to pay large amounts upfront. The trade financing credit can be maintained on your books as working capital, not as debt.

For more information on alternative business loans and commercial financing, visit the Capstone homepage. Our previous blog entries have more industry news and analysis.

Contracting Business Efficiently and Profitably

Grow Your Contracting Business Efficiently and Profitably

17:58 22 July in Blog

Business Efficiently and ProfitablyHave you considered making an investment for growth, but don’t feel that your company is quite ready?

Capstone Capital Group, LLC and Trend Consulting Group have partnered to offer their clients an additional layer of financial and management support.  This additional support is designed to help their clients increase their scale of operations efficiently and profitably.

Our primary goal is to help our clients accelerate and achieve their growth initiatives on a profitable basis.  The two prong approach will sustain our client’s growth in the long term.  To accomplish sustainable long-term growth most companies require competent management and additional capital.  Our additional layer of support provides both essential ingredients to our clients’ success.

Today’s Real Estate and Construction Markets require a high level of performance from contractors.  With elevated performance levels our client’s resources are stretched thin.  We have found that without proper funding and management support most growing contractors are left with two options neither of which should be acceptable to companies that are trying to grow profitably

ONE

Turn down new business and increased demand from existing customers because your company is at capacity and does not possess the capital, internal process, nor the project management in the field to confidently deliver on your contractual obligations.

TWO

Accept more new business than your company can handle only to realize your existing clients will suffer and that you’ve set your company up for losses, negative brand impact, and a reactive business model which typically leads to insolvency or in some cases much worse!

 

The Goal of our partnership is twofold:

1. To give our growing clients access to the funding they need when they need it through Capstone’s flexible single invoice factoring and funding solutions.

2. Deliver effective project management outsourcing solutions through Trend’s comprehensive reporting, process, documentation, and effective field management model.

This one two punch of strategic resources is designed to ensure you are well prepared to grow your business effectively and profitably while boosting your company’s brand and reputation.

Capstone deploys Single Invoice Factoring Programs to fund General Contractors and Subcontractors to ensure on time performance of tasks. Capstone specializes in Single Invoice Factoring (“Spot Factoring”) for firms in need of immediate cash. We provide flexible, no contract invoice purchases in exchange for working capital. Our highly experience construction professionals are on staff to facilitate the purchase of construction related accounts receivable.  They have operated on job sites as project managers, so we understand how critical it is to have available funds for payroll, suppliers and operating expenses. Knowing that Capstone will purchase your invoices provides you with the confidence to bid on new jobs and grow your business.

Trend strives to improve our client’s overall experience while engaging in a new construction project(s). Our goal is to change the “USUAL” way construction projects are managed and improve the process through our comprehensive project management services. We put a heavy focus on process and documentation while managing our client’s projects.  This is accomplished by incorporating our cloud based project management software to help boost overall project efficiencies.  Our service also includes automated reporting capabilities to ensure all parties are well informed every step of the way throughout the duration of their project.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Position Your Company for Growth

Position Your Company for Growth

18:12 03 March in Blog

Position Your Company for GrowthSince June of 2014, oil prices have declined by over 40% causing the US dollar to surge in value against most other currencies throughout the world. This may have had a negative impact on the oil patch and US exporters, but it is creating greater disposable income for the middle class. According to the New York Times, “Lower energy prices especially with the cold winter we have all been experiencing have been a benefit to all.” The increased value of the US Dollar also increased consumer purchasing power. If the Fed follows through on increasing interest rates mid-year as is anticipated, we will see oil prices drop and watch the dollar strengthen. Initially, there was a concern over deflation, but growth is mitigating that potential problem.

“The forces that were fueling the creation of wealth and leaving the middle class behind were high oil prices, easy money and a weak dollar. Two of the three forces have been quelled that being, high oil process and the weak dollar,” according to the New York Times.

As a result, capital inflows into the U.S. will occur. The economies of the G-20 are all in negative growth or slow growth phases due to high social welfare policies and high taxes. The capital inflows will help create demand in our economy and cause growth as businesses take this capital in and use it to expand.

These trends work in favor of job creation, higher wages and business growth. As was mentioned in our last blog, the low business formation rate over the last six years has reduced competition and given many small businesses the ability to move from start-up to entrenched businesses. These businesses are poised for economic growth and wealth creation. Add to this the upcoming presidential election that will be in full swing by the middle of this year and optimism should prevail through most of the economy.

If it looks like the next president will be friendlier towards business, you will be in for a great period of growth even if policies do not change. The fact that we will have a new leader who at least supports business growth will have a tremendous impact on growth and overall sentiment regardless of which party controls the White House or Congress.

It is imperative that you continue to invest in your business and increase your infrastructure to handle increased demand for your goods and services. Position your company to ride the growth wave as other have in the mid-1980s, late 1990s and early 2000. For years, we have helped organizations get the immediate cash they needed without the typical red tape that most banks require. For more information about our Commercial financing, Single Invoice Factoring, give us a call today at (347) 821-3400 and speak to a representative.

Keeping up the Pace: Embracing changes in technology in order to stay relevant in a digital marketplace

19:55 10 July in Blog
Is your company keeping pace with new innovation and technology?  If the answer is no, it is likely your company will not last very long.  In order to survive in a digital society, companies must embrace and keep pace with changes in innovation and technology.  According to some experts, keeping pace with change means testing new ideas and building new businesses within your organizations, as well as being aware that all media is social. 
 
Investing in IT and technology infrastructure, in addition to marketing expansion and new ventures is key to a company’s growth during uncertain economic times.  According to Futurist Jim Carroll, the top 10% of companies who survived and thrived during the “Great Recession” of 2007-2009, did so by specifically deciding to make bold moves to invest in world-class innovation, despite economic uncertainty. 
 
Soraya Darabi, Co-Founder of Zady and Social Entrepreneur gives five reasons why a company should embrace new media and technology.  The first reason is that understanding innovation as it evolves keeps your company relevant.  Darabi adds that not understanding innovation as it evolves makes your company irrelevant.  Next, Darabi states that by embracing new media and technology, companies create positive brand awareness.  Additionally, a company that evolves technologically will have a better ability to reach new audiences and new demographics.  There is also an opportunity for companies to generate additional revenue by utilizing smartphone app technology. 
 
As you can see, by investing in technology and new media, a company will have the ability to remain nimble, grow and ultimately succeed in a digital economic climate that shows no signs of slowing down. 
 
Capstone Capital Group, LLC wants to help your business succeed by getting you the investment capital you need to help your business grow and continue to stay relevant.  Capstone Capital Group, LLC specializes in Single Invoice Factoring (“Spot Factoring”), purchase order factoring for firms in need of immediate cash. Spot Factoring provides flexible, no contract invoice selling in exchange for working capital from Capstone Capital Group.

Executing Your Goals and the Importance of Human Capital

20:00 16 January in Blog

It is mid January which means you have settled in on your Goals for 2014 and are reviewing them twice daily.  By now, you should be getting great ideas when you least expect them.  From experience, when engaged in non-work-related activities, the best ideas come to one’s mind.  It is important to write these ideas down and develop them so when you get to the office you can place them on your to-do list. You will then be able to focus on how to implement the ideas or discuss them with your staff or peers to determine their viability.  Unfortunately, not every great idea you will come up with will be relevant or successful idea to implement in attaining your goals.  Nevertheless, keep track of these perils of thought and use the ones that are in line with the attainment of your goals.
You should have also identified your Business Funding Sources whether they are a combination of Debt and Equity, equity or debt.  This foundation is essential so you can increase work schedules or contracts as the start dates begin without worry on how you will finance them or the Growth of Your Business.
What we haven’t discussed yet is how you Multiply Yourself to ensure that your execution tactic does not fail during this period of expansion.  You will need a few key employees that have experience in your industry.  Where do you find affordable talent in your industry with significant experience that can help multiply your time?  There are scores of underemployed veterans and baby boomers.  Because of the uneven economy many people are still looking for work.  The first place to look is a Temp Agency that handles this type of job candidate. 
Hiring a temp may seem a bit more expensive at first but what they allow you to do is try out the employee for a period of time.  If you like their performance and fit in the culture of your organization you can hire the individual full-time for a small fee to the temp agency.  You should have earned enough to cover the employee’s placement fee by the time you have to pay the fee for hiring them.  The temp agency will also allow you to layoff the employee if the job comes to an end and you do not have work for the individual.  This is a great way to incrementally add to your staff without creating long-term excessive overhead.  If you select the correct temp agencies you will have a very well qualified group of candidates to select from.
It is important to surround yourself with the people you need to run your organization successfully.  While Human Capital isn’t something you can show on your balance sheet, it is an extremely important asset to the long-term sustainability of your company.

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