Invoice Factoring For Automotive

Drive growth and pay expenses with faster cash flow

The global automotive industry is projected to grow to just under nine trillion U.S. dollars, or about 11½ trillion Canadian dollars by 2030¹. This factors in all the small businesses that support the big brands—the car and truck manufacturers, distributors, parts suppliers, and others. 

Each automotive industry segment faces challenges—downtimes, seasonal slowdowns, inventory and inventory delays, sales (or lack of sales), finding employees, and competition, just to name a few. 

Many of these challenges result in snags in cash flow, in part due to business customers who need 30, 60, or 90 days to pay an invoice. Invoice factoring for the automotive industry is a practical financing option for small businesses who need to accelerate their cash flow.

What Is Invoice Factoring for the Automotive Industry?

With invoice or accounts receivable factoring, you sell your eligible invoices to a factoring company, like FundThrough, and get paid the cash you need quickly, ahead of long payment terms. Depending on how quickly you need working capital, you may not have the time to wait through a drawn-out application process for a loan or line of credit. 

And, unlike a loan that only gives you a finite amount of capital that you pay back with interest, factoring with FundThrough advances you 100% of the invoice amount, minus a small fee. There’s no long pay-back period—the advance from the factoring company is money you’ve already earned from a delivered product or service. 

Generally, there are five basic steps to factoring:

  1. You deliver your product(s) or services to your B2B customers.
  2. You invoice your customers.
  3. You sell one or more eligible invoices to the factoring company and get 100% of the invoice amount, minus a nominal fee.
  4. You get back to work.
  5. The factor collects payment from your customers.

Plus, even if you have a blemish on your credit report, you can still often factor your invoices. Factoring doesn’t base its credit analysis on you but instead on the creditworthiness of your customers. Not only that, but factoring is flexible — you choose which invoices to factor.

How Does Automotive Factoring Compare With Other Kinds of Business Financing?

In the past, factoring was largely misunderstood. Business bank loans and lines of credit were the traditional and accepted forms of financing, along with credit cards. Each of these different funding options have pros and cons to consider.

Loans

Costs for a new or growing automotive business can be significant. You may need to purchase equipment and inventory, pay employees, and keep up with rent, taxes, and marketing. You may consider taking  out a business loan. 

Pros

  • Many small business loans have relatively low interest rates when compared to many other types of funding.
  • Interest can be deductible on your taxes. 
  • Depending on your requirements, you may have access to large sums of money to be used to grow your business. 
  • On-time repayments can help improve your credit rating. 

Cons

  • Many small, growing businesses don’t qualify for loans. They often need cash faster than the process would allow anyway. 
  • Most lenders have strict guidelines for loans and a lengthy review process.
  • You may need to have a good credit rating. Anything else and you may not qualify and if you do you’ll likely pay a higher interest rate.
  • Rates can fluctuate depending on the market. The more you borrow, the higher interest you may have to pay as the lender takes on more risk.
  • An automotive business loan and the debt will show up on your balance sheet, which affects the valuation of your business. 

Lines of Credit

A line of credit (LOC) is a lot like a credit card. You can borrow money up to a certain maximum amount determined by your financial institution. You can cover day-to-day expenses and pay back your debt, only to borrow again when needed.

Pros

  • You can borrow when you need it.
  • When you’re short of cash, you can borrow only what you need as long as you don’t exceed your limit.
  • Making on-time payments can help improve your credit score.
  • Lines of credit can have low interest rates.
  • The payments on the line of credit vary and vary depending on your outstanding balance. 

 Cons

    • As with loans, oftentimes banks won’t give small, growing businesses a line of credit. They often need cash faster than the process would allow anyway. 
    • There will be limits on the maximum amount you can borrow, which might not always be enough.
  • Although you pay-as-you-go, if you miss payments, are late, or move outside the terms of your agreement, you might face high fees.
  • It’s easy to misuse a line of credit (just like it’s easy to misuse a credit card). 
  • If your business fails, you are responsible for any payments and debt incurred from using your line of credit.
  • You need to have been in business at least two years, and will need to provide bank account information, financial statements, tax returns, and more to qualify. 
  • A line of credit is like a loan that needs to be repaid with interest.

Business Credit Cards

Like all forms of funding, business credit cards must be used wisely or things can go sideways very quickly. 

Pros

  • It’s easier to qualify for a business credit card than for a line of credit or business loan.
  • You have quick access to the cash you need when you need it.
  • Many business credit cards have reward programs or incentives, like cash back or airline miles. 
  • A business credit card can help build credit, which is helpful if you ever need to apply for a bank loan.

Cons

  • You may need to provide a personal guarantee to qualify.
  • High interest, annual fees and late charges can add up, especially if funding a large expense.
  • Many business credit cards do not offer purchase protection. 
  • Business credit cards come with security risks like fraudulent charges from unauthorized use and stolen credit card numbers. 
  • You risk overspending.

Receivables Factoring 

Invoice factoring is not a loan. The application process is quick, there is no repayment obligation, no high interest rates, and no debt to record on your company’s balance sheet. Plus, many more companies will qualify.  

Pros

  • You have access to fast cash when you need it based on the value of your invoice(s).
  • Cash advances can greatly improve shortfalls in cash flow due to slow-paying clients.
  • Does not require your business to have a long credit history, which is best for start-ups and fast-growing firms.
  • Factoring relies on the creditworthiness of your customers, not yours.
  • Invoice factoring is easier to obtain than most other forms of funding.
  • Funding can increase with the value of your invoices.
  • If your business is seasonal, factoring can infuse cash into your business to get you through the downtimes. 
  • Your accounts receivables are used as collateral, unlike many loans or lines of credit.
  • You give up no equity or control in your business in exchange for funding with factoring. 
  • No  matter the size of your automotive business, you can use factoring. 

Cons

  • Invoices need to be verified (customer contact sometimes required).
  • Can be complicated to account for in bookkeeping.

How Do You Choose an Automotive Factoring Partner?

Choosing a factoring partner is a lot like choosing any lender. It pays to do your homework. There are also several questions to ask prior to starting the application process:

Does the factoring company work with various segments in the automotive industry?

Most factoring companies work with most industries, but not all. Some factors specialize in only a few industries. 

FundThrough works with B2B companies in the automotive industry. We provide receivable financing for automotive supply companies and more.

What advance rates does the factoring company offer?

Advance rates can range from 60% to 100%, depending on the factoring company and sometimes the industry. 

FundThrough— 100% of the invoice amount, less a fee.

What factoring fees does the factoring company charge?  

A factoring company should be able to provide what factoring fees it charges upfront. But some companies may make it difficult to determine the total costs of using their service. FundThrough offers transparent pricing so you know prior to signing an agreement. 

FundThrough pricing – 100% advance rates minus a flat fee. One up front price.

Does the factoring company have minimums?

A minimum is the amount you must factor every period (month, each quarter or every year). Some factoring companies offer plans that require minimums, while others do not. 

FundThrough doesn’t require minimums. Only fund when you need to.

Cash flow is the number one problem for most start-ups and small businesses, especially if they’re growing. This is also true in the automotive sector. Invoice factoring companies typically consider several situations before offering you an advance.

  • Nature of business: you must be a registered business selling goods or services to other businesses.
  • Service completion: invoice factoring is only available for goods or services that your clients have marked as complete or delivered.
  • Encumbrance-free invoice: since invoices are the only collateral in a factoring arrangement, encumbrances such as tax liens can make it difficult to qualify for factoring. (But not impossible. FundThrough works with businesses on IRS and CRA tax payment plans all the time. We can even help you with getting an arrangement set up).
 

Factoring invoices is a sound financial strategy if you—

  • Spend time tracking down slow-paying customers and waiting 30, 60 or 90 days to be paid, which puts a tremendous burden on your business.
  • If you’ve delivered a product or provided a service to another business.
  • If you have slow times, downtimes, or your business is cyclical.
  • You experience times of cash flow crunch.
  • You need access to working capital to grow.
  • You can’t qualify for a loan.
  • Your customers or clients are creditworthy.

FundThrough takes the legwork out of accounts receivables financing. It’s fully automated platform is easy to navigate, it’s fee structure is transparent and a customer service rep is there when you have questions. Find out what FundThrough’s clients have to say, and start factoring your invoices today.

Simple. Intuitive. Invoice Factoring For Automotive.

Built For Your Business.