Sunday, 19 February 2012

How Secantor helps businesses obtain funding

Secantor helps businesses of all sizes up to £100m turnover being the upper of the medium sized business spectrum to obtain funding whether it be debt or equity, or the correct balance of both, to obtain the optimum cost of capital when balanced against risk.

Secantor starts by helping SME organisations to define their strategic direction and to properly articulate the strategy into a business plan to attract funding. This is not a "sterile document" but a way of looking at the future which will become embeded in the organisation and continually reviewed and refined.

The difference with Secantor is that we provide an ongoing role as part of the mangement team acting in the capacity of a finance director. This is an extremely cost effective way of obtaining professional input to a mangement team. In addition, the banks and equity funders, with whom we have great relationships, understand that we will be "staying the course" so we will be there to help the organisation to deliver operational success on the back of the strategy. We are therefore very different from consultants who might come in to do a one off piece of work and who do not necessarily have the vested interest of ensuring that long term success is delivered.

Forecasting is often a pre-requisite for a funding application. However, there is far less value in one off forecasting than there is in continual rolling forecasts, where management are able to demonstrate their expertise and give comfort to stakeholders that they are balancing the risk/reward model in an optimal way. Of course nothing ever goes to plan, and there will always be externalities that were not known about, however rolling forecasts give great comfort that management really understand the basic drivers of the business and that they properly understand and are working on the limiting factors. There is a change occuring within the banks where instead of requesting information they are focussing on the quality of their customers' finance function and ensuring that the propoer processes and systems are in place to deliver business intelligence for stakeholders.

As an organisation expands the proper integration of the finance function into the business as a source of business intelligence is essential to attracting finance and giving attracting the support of existing and future stakeholders.

Secantor specialises in converting a finance function from one that is merely compliant (or perhaps not!) to one that quickly becomes a true business partner and is valued by the rest of the organisation.

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