The following industry specialists are all speaking at the Business Funding Show; for further information visit http://businessfundingshow.com/. Up today, we have Climb Online director Mark Wright.
What do you think is the most popular way of securing funding right now for SMEs?
I imagine that the majority of SMEs do not undertake exhaustive research when it comes to business funding and would predict that after approaching friends and business contacts, most would aim for a conventional bank loan.
Do you have any tips for SMEs to improve their chances of securing investment?
I would certainly advise SMEs to review a number of investment options before targeting one particular funding channel. But once decided, I can’t stress enough the importance of having a comprehensive business plan that explains in finer detail exactly how that investment will be used, what it is forecasted to return and how much your investor is likely to receive at which point in the growth strategy. Ultimately, being sharp on your figures demonstrates confidence in your business success and will increase the likelihood of an investor believing in you too.
Do you feel that certain ways of funding could ever become saturated?
SMEs are beginning to utilise more government grants and initiatives, together with online methods such as crowdfunding – particularly as the business in hand benefits from not having to return any of the invested monies. Take Glowforge, for example, a 3D laser printer that has just made crowdfunding history. In its 30-day launch campaign it made a massive $27.9 million, which will now be used to invest in the growth of the company and to fulfil all orders. This level of investment at such an early stage of the start-up would most likely not have been achieved by using venture capitalists.
What do you think the SME funding model of the future is?
With the ever-growing digital landscape, I think SME funding will be provided through online schemes both large and small, together with government-backed grants and loans in order to aid the development of the UK and the wider EU economy.