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Finance

A company’s cash flow can be more important than the profits or losses that are reported in its financial statements. It is not unusual that a business fails even though it:

  • Experiences great demand for its products or services;
  • Is profitable;
  • Has a promising future.

Sometimes the failure results from a cash-flow crisis. This happens when:

  • Rapid growth ties up cash to finance accounts receivable or inventory;
  • Accounts receivable or inventory are not managed properly;
  • A company is not focused on or managing its cash flow;
  • There’s a significant decline in business.

A successful company needs sufficient cash to:

  • Meet its capital equipment needs;
  • Provide adequate working capital for receivables and inventory;
  • Finance research;
  • Provide for company expansion and development;
  • Withstand downturns in its business.

Your AZSBDC Business Analyst Can Work With You To:

Financing Alternatives

  • Discuss with you the advantages and disadvantages of equity versus debt financing;
  • Determine the likelihood of succeeding in attracting types of financing;
  • Review with you the guidelines that a lender or investor typically considers when making a financing decision.

Business Loans

  • Identify lenders who are most likely to accommodate your business’s stage of development and specific situation;
  • Define your actual need for financing;
  • Assess your ability to repay a loan;
  • Make a loan application, including guidance in preparing your business plan and presenting your case to the bank or lender;
  • Ensure that you have adequate control over your expenses and cash flow so that the lender has maximum assurance of getting repaid.

Equity Financing

  • Identify sources of investment;
  • Understand the features, advantages and disadvantages of each;
  • Prepare financial plans and forecasts;
  • Better define your need for financing;
  • Create a written business plan that clearly explains your business opportunity;
  • Prepare your presentation to potential investors.

Technology Transfer

  • Help you identify and apply for research grants, including the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grants and the Small Business Technology Transfer Research (STTR) grants.

Cash Flow Forecasting

  • Help you prepare a cash flow forecast that identifies potential shortfalls and surpluses so that you can plan and react in a timely way.

Cash Flow Management

  • Review your operations and offer suggestions to improve your business’s cash flow.

Accounting and Reporting

  • Decide which is better: keeping records in-house, or hiring an outside bookkeeper or accountant to publish financial statements and prepare tax returns;
  • Get training in accounting and accounting systems if you wish to do the task internally.

Financial Planning

Provide you with financial planning templates to help you design and create a short-term (12 months) or long-term (three to five years) plan to:

  • Set your business’s own course of growth and operation;
  • Set financial targets;
  • Test financial scenarios;
  • Identify the need for contingency plans.

Budgeting

  • Help you set up a process for developing and reviewing a budget that includes planned or expected revenue, cost and expense data detailed for each department and month; provides a control tool to monitor results and take corrective action to keep the company on track; and creates accountability on every level of the organization as department managers create their portions of the budget.

Guide To Small Business Planning


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