News Article

Factoring & Invoice Discounting

Venture Finance urges industry to drop 'alternative' tag

By CreditMan Thursday, November 19, 2009

In a newly published white paper Venture Finance is urging the Invoice and Asset Based Lending industry to drop its 'alternative finance' tag, and embrace its mainstream position within corporate finance. The document, endorsed by the Asset Based Finance Association (ABFA), is entitled 'The Evolution of Invoice and Asset Based Lending' and outlines the themes, discussions and conclusions arising from a recent industry think tank.

The white paper outlines how a consensus was reached during the discussion that Invoice and Asset Based Lending is already a mainstream funding option for UK businesses. The 'alternative' tag grew during the 1990s, as the industry began to gain greater recognition as a credible option for companies looking to fund business change - from growth to buyout or turnaround.

Those at the think tank argued that the ability of Invoice and Asset Based Lending to support today's business needs means that terms like 'alternative' are now misleading and are holding the industry back from fulfilling its potential in the new financial landscape.

Peter Ewen, Managing Director, Venture Finance explains: "As an industry, we have often classified ourselves as 'alternative' finance. In the past it has been a useful point of difference, highlighting its flexible and progressive 'can-do' attitude compared with the "one solution fits all" philosophy of traditional finance.

"However many businesses' bad experiences with traditional lenders during the recession underline Invoice and Asset Based Lending's back to basics approach which is grounded in common sense, not driven by credit. The last few years has seen a financial shift from irresponsible lending to a risk adverse drought but our industry has always taken the centre ground - being dynamically linked to sales performance and existing assets".

Chaired by Professor Nigel Waite, head of the Financial Services Research Forum, the 'Evolution of Alternative Finance' think tank drew together industry representatives including the Asset Based Finance Association (ABFA), KPMG, the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), the South East England Development Association (SEEDA), a successful retail business as well as relevant media and research bodies.

Those wishing to download a copy of the white paper: 'The Evolution of Invoice and Asset Based Lending', can do so at

About Venture Finance -

Venture Finance is an award-winning premier independent Invoice and Asset Based Lender, established in 1989. Venture was the first independent invoice financier to offer Asset Based Lending (ABL) in the UK in 1990 and was the first authorised independent invoice financier to provide the Government's Small Firms Loan Guarantee Scheme, lending almost 20m to clients over its 10-year life. It is now active in the new and improved Enterprise Finance Guarantee scheme.

As part of the ABN AMRO group and ultimately owned by the Dutch Government, Venture Finance is a solid and dependable funding partner for business. The company's award-winning service has already helped thousands of businesses, from start-ups through to 150m organisations, providing reliable finance tailored to individual client needs. Venture Finance handles almost 4 billion in client invoices every year, through 250 staff in 11 regional offices.

Factoring and Invoice Discounting are core services for the business. They both release ongoing working capital back into client businesses, based on the value of outstanding invoices and other assets. Versatile funding services both are ideal for clients needing to manage cashflow, refinance or restructure, fund business opportunities, purchase new machinery, merge with or acquire a new business or expand operations. Both can be combined with Bad Debt Protection to shield against unpaid invoices.