Auto Detailing Entrepreneur Solves cash flow Struggles
When Canadian entrepreneur John Wilding heard about RestorFx, a new automotive refinishing system that makes older cars look brand-new, he jumped at the chance to open his own business.
A graduate of a prestigious college automotive marketing program, Wilding had been working in the car industry for decades in a variety of positions, including at car auctions and as a used-car manager at a dealership in Ontario.
In fact, that’s when he heard about the revolutionary new product that makes a car’s paint job look factory-fresh.
“I was the first person to use it in Ontario and I loved it,” Wilding recalls. “I saw the results and the benefits of the product on my own lot.”
When Wilding’s father saw what the product could do, he was excited, too, and he saw the potential for a successful business venture. He talked his son into opening AutoRD together and, not surprisingly, Wilding quickly found plenty of dealers interested in what the pair had to offer.
In fact, when they see the results, he says, they’re “blown away.”
After eight months of being in business, everything was going great. Car dealers and clients loved working with their product. Wilding had more than enough work. And he had plenty of invoices going out the door.
But the money wasn’t coming back in fast enough to pay for the equipment and staffing needed to run the business.
Wilding’s not alone in his struggle. For a new franchise owner, the first year can be the toughest, especially when it comes to cash flow. You’re juggling money constantly to cover your hard costs — salaries, rent, materials — while you build up your business. And when your clients pay you 30 days or more after you’ve done their work, you may be struggling to fund the next round of jobs or more materials to keep going.
So, like so many other new business owners, Wilding went to his bank for support, but was told his company was too new to qualify for a line of credit. Come back when you have more financial statements, the bank told him. But he didn’t even have his first year of business under his belt.
Undaunted, John turned to his accountant for advice on what to do next. His accountant did some research and promptly recommended FundThrough.
At the time, FundThrough was a relatively new Canadian startup, but it was founded by experts in small-business financing, and it had been covered extensively in key Canadian media.
Wilding’s accountant told him they had the exact service that he needed — invoice funding. Basically, it would allow Wilding to get his invoices paid whenever he needed the funds, rather than having to wait 30 days to get paid.
It was a perfect fit.
“We created FundThrough for companies just like John’s,” says Steven Uster, FundThrough’s CEO and co-founder of the company that is now Canada’s largest invoice funding service.
“With our invoice-funding service, we’re able to help where the banks can’t because we don’t just look at your business. We look at who you are selling to. More importantly, once you’re set up, funding your invoices is a simple click of a button and the funds will be in your bank within 24 hours.”
For Wilding, the impact was instant.
He started using FundThrough as a way to get AutoRD’s invoices paid immediately, and he hasn’t stopped. In fact, knowing that he could get access to his money that much sooner means he can go out, fill up his shop’s shelves and take on new business, knowing that there will always be money hitting his account when he needs it.
“Without FundThrough, I probably wouldn’t be where I am today and that’s the truth,” he says.
“The fact of the matter is we’d done the work and the money was coming in. We knew that. It was just finding someone that realized that.”
AutoRD is now on the way to becoming a total reconditioning centre for cars. The company offers another clear-coat system called OptiCoat and it’s also expanded to doing complete detailing on vehicles, dent removal, rim repair, and leather and vinyl repairs. And they’re looking into opening a second location.
Wilding’s experience was so positive, he has recommended FundThrough to many friends and fellow entrepreneurs.
“I would definitely recommend it to anyone who was a business owner in a similar situation,” he says. “I’ll probably always be using it.”
And now he can focus on what he loves most: customer service. “It’s about going above and beyond,” he says. “We really strive to do that.”
Put FundThrough to work for you
FundThrough helps small businesses like John’s navigate cash flow hurdles every day. You can join the hundreds of FundThrough-partnered companies in Canada who no longer wait to get paid. Fill out your application today using the link below.
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Originally published in the Financial Post on August 9th 2016