Finding loans to start a business can be time consuming and costly if you are not careful. While it does not usually actually cost anything to apply for a loan moneywise, it does cost time, and time is money.
If you seek funds from an organized investment group such as an angel fund, venture capital entity, or even an investment club, the first thing you want to do is to find one person to buy into your vision.
Small businesses often find themselves at the mercy of creditors, and their view of your company will often be based in no small part on its credit rating. Some of the factors involved in compiling a credit rating might remain outside of your control and depend on external factors but there are ways to help give your company the best chance of achieving and maintaining a valuably solid credit rating.
In the US, many entrepreneurs see grants as “free money,” since they are not loans and don’t have to be repaid. A grant is not an equity investment, so the entrepreneur doesn’t have to give up a stake in the company either. Typically they can be used to fund product development and commercialization that would otherwise require outside investors.
It is rare when one person starts a company, supplies all the funding, and shares no management tasks or equity with others, and still grows the company to any significant size, worthy of a multi-million dollar opportunity to cash out at exit.
There are more ways for merchants to secure money for their businesses than ever before. It wasn’t long ago that a merchant either borrowed money from a bank or asked their father-in-law for a helping hand.
Entrepreneurs looking for investor funding often fail to realize that all money comes with strings. For example, if you have watched the Shark Tank TV series, you probably noticed that the Sharks always ask the entrepreneurs for their intended “use of funds.”
One problem I see all the time is businesses financing their short-term assets improperly, which greatly increases the risk to the firm and can potentially even cause it to fail. This is a serious issue, but it can be remedied by choosing an alternative financing method.
Will the Volcker Rule end up having a significant impact on small business lending? Only time will tell. If you’re a little confused about the rule and the role it’s going to play in the small business sector, you’re not alone.
Small Biz Club is the premier destination for small business owners and entrepreneurs. To succeed in business, you have to constantly learn about new things, evaluate what you’re doing, and look for ways to improve—that’s what we’re here to help you do.