Unless your company is flushed with cash and you never have to worry about capital ever again, you’re probably faced with a common problem: getting money through the door is challenging and expensive. While skilled negotiation, an airtight business plan, and convincing managerial experience can take you far, there is another often overlooked tool in the fundraising toolbox that can be leveraged to take you even further: a strong credit score.
When people think about credit scores, they think about individual credit scores. A person’s score has several useful and arguably necessary functions. For example, the score can determine what kind of loan you get and the rates you pay. It can also determine your insurance premium, how much you spend on your cell phone plan, and whether the landlord asks you to put down a one- or four-month security deposit. Your individual credit score, therefore, affects how much money you can access and whether you’re saving a bundle or getting hammered. In other words, with a good score people will find it easier to trust you.
Fortunately, the same credit score principles that apply to an individual can have the same impact on a company. If your company needs a working capital loan and your credit score is stellar, you’ll be able to get more cash at cheaper rates than if you couldn’t provide a score at all. If your company is looking to rent a larger space because you’re expanding, you can use your credit score to negotiate a better monthly rental and park less of your money in the security deposit. In other words, with a good score you will have more bargaining power and less cost.
Raising capital is just one of the ways your credit score can be beneficial. Let’s say you run a coworking space, full of space for bright eyed startups who need are looking for a place to establish themselves. Some of them are well-run, some of them aren’t, which means that some of them pay on time and some of them may not. If you could get a quick health check on all your occupants, you’d know exactly who to talk to and who looks like they might be struggling and avoid potentially incurring bad debt. And for the companies who have great scores, you could consider offering a reduction on the security deposit to keep them happy with staying in your space.
If your business is heavily dependent on certain players in your supply chain, having an eye on their financial health and getting their credit score can help you avert a major crisis by looking for alternatives before a portion of your network goes under. On the other hand, if these entities have strong scores, you can improve your relationship with them by providing them better terms.
So how do you get a viable credit score? Simple, send us your financials and your AP/AR aging reports and we’ll churn out one of two reports, according to which you prefer. Our “Lite” report is quick and easy: you’ll get your score and a breakdown of your financial metrics. If you need something more involved, our “Essential” report will give you everything the Lite report does, plus an in-depth analysis of your finances. You can apply insights gleaned from the report to tighten up areas of your business and/or use it as leverage when navigating a capital injection.
To benefit from all of the above, e-mail [email protected].