In the ever-changing SME environment, many factors can make or break a business. In the first two blog posts, we looked at interest rates and how they affect your business. We also talked about what this means for Fintechs and how they offer alternative funding options that can empower businesses to deal with some of the problems they face – like high interest rates and decreased market spend. In this third instalment let’s understand how Fintech lender, Merchant Capital can help your business navigate some of these challenges in meaningful ways.

Flexible Funding

Fintech banking has really changed the lending industry. Now lending is faster, more accessible and better suited to the needs of SMEs. Fintech lenders use technology to streamline the application process empowering them to make faster decisions, and allows them to offer more flexible terms. The various products on offer are industry specific and range from short-term loans to invoice financing. This gives businesses the freedom to pick lending products that better fit their budgets and help them meet their financial goals. With its mix of technology, flexibility, and speed, fintech lending is no longer merely an option for SME owners; it's quickly becoming their first choice. 

Super-quick turnaround times & bespoke offerings

For business owners, time is money. The benefit of Fintech lending platforms is they are able to provide quick access to funding. This speed makes all the difference to SMEs when they need to capitalize on new opportunities or manage cash flow in a hurry. The trouble with traditional lending is that it often neglects the bespoke needs of various sectors. In contrast to this, Fintech lender Merchant Capital has products tailored for various industries. Now you are able to get fast funding for your medical practice, legal firm, retail store and more. 

Merchant Capital Cash Advance

An MCA can be used by retail, wholesale, distribution, service and manufacturing businesses that receive regular payments from multiple customers. Quite often, these advances are used for business-enhancing projects like bulk stock purchases, opening new locations or funding renovations. In contrast to other types of lending, there is minimal paperwork involved and quick turnarounds, with funding paid in as little as 48 hours. Plus repayments work directly in line with turnover. 

Medical Practice Finance

Complex finance is not at the top of a healthcare practitioner’s priorities. Despite this, they still need working capital that keeps their practice as healthy as their patients. The Merchant Capital Medical Practice Finance empowers medical practitioners to accelerate their practice’s growth and approach their practices like entrepreneurs. In these cases, medical practice owners draw on their Discovery, Altron HealthTech and Mediswitch claims history and can receive funding in as little as 24 hours. The big difference here is that unlike traditional funding, repayments will never surpass a practice’s income. This South African first is what Merchant Capital calls Pay-As-You-Practice finance. 

Legal Practice Finance

In the fast-paced world of law, where time is a precious commodity and growth opportunities often go untapped, Merchant Capital offers a working capital solution tailored specifically to legal practitioners. Legal practices in South Africa have unique working capital requirements that are often overlooked. But Merchant Capital offers these firms repayments that work directly in line with their turnover: With the choice of either a daily or weekly debit order that will run directly against the practice’s bank account until the Legal Practice Finance facility is fully paid off. So no matter the size or type of practice, from incorporated to sole practitioners, Merchant Capital can fund advocates and legal firms both big and small. Turnaround times here are around 72 hours. This is because law firms also have trust accounts, annual financials and management accounts (etc) so credit has to check everything before approval can be granted.

Stock Advance: 

The Merchant Capital Stock Advance is the first product of its kind in South Africa. It is tailor-made for retailers and is very short term with a built-in payment holiday. Allowing retailers to buy stock, purchase small equipment or provide cash flow relief. Because of its structure, some clients use the stock advance in place of purchase order finance, invoice factoring or bridging finance.

Responsible lending

The SME Funding market has grown quickly in South Africa, giving many businesses another way to get the money they need to grow. Because of this rapid growth, industry standards had to be put in place so SME Finance companies would safeguard the industry's good name. One important thing that the South African SME Finance Association (SASFA) has done is implement a list of "best practices'' that buyers and small businesses can use to figure out how to do business with other companies. This ensures that businesses and lenders practice in an honest way, which in turn will help the business succeed and continue to grow. Merchant Capital is registered with SASFA and has other important procedures in place to ensure that SMEs don’t overextend themselves and that the process is both fruitful and sustainable. 

Fixed cost of funding

At Merchant Capital, we don’t work with an interest rate that fluctuates in accordance with economic factors. From day one, the business owner knows exactly how much they will be paying back. This allows them to prepare their finances and strategically orchestrate use of funds.

Related: [UPDATED] SERIES 2/3: Understanding the Impact of Interest Rates on SMEs: The Role of FinTechs 

The bottom line

The current economic climate is less than favourable for SMEs, medical practitioners and legal firms alike. Due to this, it is important for SMEs to continually seek innovative and efficient ways to fuel their growth and overcome financial challenges. Merchant Capital’s working capital isn’t directly tied to the interest rate – costs are known upfront. Further to this, offerings are industry-specific resulting in funding which is tailored to the unique needs of that business owner. To see how your business might benefit from one of Merchant Capital’s bespoke lending products, visit our loan calculator or contact us for more information. Looking forward to empowering your business with short-term lending for long-term value.

Related Articles