Retail sector given boost

Retail sector given boost with funding business launch.

Investly, a peer-to-peer invoice finance platform, aims to help SMEs overcome long customer payment terms on invoices

Featuring reduced admin fees and streamlined processes to provide the quickest and simplest way to access funds

Investly offers small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) within the retail sector with a more straight forward invoice finance option, giving them almost instant access to much needed working capital to aid growth.

A common problem in the retail sector is that businesses are crippled by payment terms of 60, 90 and even 120 days. Investly enables companies to get the money within days rather than months, following a straightforward application process. Until now, invoice finance options – whether through traditional channels or via other peer-to-peer platforms – have been complex and laden with fees and charges.

Investly has simplified the product so that once credit checks have been cleared, SMEs can sell invoices to investors within two days. Therefore given the ability to assign the money to buy new products, material, services or increase staff – aiding growth and enabling them to be the best they can possibly be without the cash flow worries.

Ruth Chamberlain, Investly’s UK Country Manager, said: “Long payment terms are crippling for all SMEs, but particularly those in the retail sector. They are dependent on cash to sustain and grow their business, but as they invest in products and people, they may not get money on work completed a month or 60 days even longer. This is putting many businesses at risk – especially those in retail who have to deal with seasonal demand and peaks and troughs of activity.”

Chamberlain continued: “Investly brings together investors with growing SMEs in need of vital capital. Our concept, expertise and technology allows businesses to be the best they can be by making the invoice finance process as simple as it has ever been. After in-depth market research, we believe that this product is perfect for the retail sector, designers and all types of businesses either delivering products, or a service.

As well as the invoice finance process, the fees have also been made as simple as possible so that all parties are clear and understand who is owed what. For example, if a business has an invoice of £10,000 for sale and the payment term is 30 days, a final sale price may be reached in the auction at £9,850. The ‘seller’ or invoice owner will be forwarded the agreed £9,850, while the remaining £150 will go to the investors, with Investly getting a fee as a proportion of this total.

How an SME can get started with Investly:

Register interest via Investly
Input some basic information about the business and invoices
Go through Investly credit checks
Once accepted, upload an invoice for sale to investors – minimum value of £1,000
The auction will take place where investors bid on the invoice
Once sold, the owed money minus the discount will be transferred within 24 hours

At launch, institutional investors and high net worths and sophisticated investors will be buying the invoices. Over time and as FCA authorisation is approved, it is anticipated that retail investors will also be able to invest through Investly. Expected returns currently range between 10% and 19% pa gross before losses. A loss rate of 0.2% is estimated by the platform.