Plus, because factoring is not a loan, it does not require collateral, nor does it negatively impact your company’s credit rating or cripple your business with sky-high interest rates and inconvenient repayment terms. You are simply getting an advance on money that is already owed to your business, and the factoring company will usually handle the back-office processes, such as collections, for you. After all of your clients have settled their accounts in full, the factor will reimburse you the remaining invoice balance minus a small factoring fee.
Top Financial Challenges in the Food Manufacturing Industry
The food manufacturing industry has its own set of financial challenges, including fluctuating commodity prices, tight profit margins, and the need for large amounts of working capital. Invoice factoring can help alleviate some of these challenges by providing quick access to cash flow, allowing businesses to purchase raw materials, take on new orders, and meet payroll and other expenses. Some of the most prevalent financial challenges in the food manufacturing industry include:
Increasing Inventory Management Complications: Inventory management is one of the most critical aspects of the entire food manufacturing industry. However, with rising transportation costs, increasing raw material prices, the perishability factor of food, and the need to meet strict regulatory requirements (to name a few factors), efficient and profitable inventory management is becoming more challenging. These challenges often result in increased waste and missed sales opportunities, negatively impacting your business’s profit margins. Food and beverage companies will need to rethink their manufacturing process and invest in smart manufacturing systems to combat these problems, maximize capacity and uptime, adapt to customer needs, reduce inventory waste, and reduce costs.
The Presence of eCommerce: The rise of online shopping has forced a change in the way many businesses operate, including those in the F&B industry. While it provides new opportunities for sales and distribution, it also presents financial challenges that arise from the need to invest in new technology and infrastructure to support online sales. Additionally, the online world has meant increased competition from online retailers and the need to fulfill online orders faster and more efficiently, all of which are putting pressure on existing inventory management, marketing, and supply chain logistics strategies.
Adapting to Supply Chain Issues: The fragility of both global and local supply chains has been magnified over the past few years. Fluctuating commodity prices and shortages in the supply of raw materials have put a lot of strain on manufacturers. If you own a business in the F&B manufacturing industry, you will likely need to implement new, innovative strategies to better manage your inventory and diversify your supply chain.
Working Capital Needs: The food manufacturing industry often requires large amounts of working capital to fund operations, such as purchasing raw materials, paying employees, and maintaining equipment.
Regulatory Requirements: Food manufacturing companies must adhere to strict regulations related to food safety, labeling, and other issues, which can be costly to implement and maintain.
Without enough capital to prepare for and combat these issues, you cannot hope to run a successful business in the food and beverage industry. Invoice factoring will free up the money tied in your accounts receivables so that instead of waiting 30, 60, or 90 days for your customers to pay, you have the money to operate and improve your business when you need it.
How to Run a Successful Food Manufacturing Company
If you want to run a successful food manufacturing company, you have several key factors to consider, on top of finding the right financing options. These include having a clear business plan, maintaining strict quality control measures, building strong relationships with suppliers and customers, and staying up to date with industry regulations and trends. The top tips for running a successful business in the food manufacturing industry are:
Find ways to improve your cash flow management – As opportunities for growth arise, so too will restrictions on your cash flow, especially because your suppliers will demand payment before your customers pay you. You cannot stall the growth of your business because of late-paying clients limiting your cash flow. You will need to investigate financing options to fill your cash flow gaps, and once you have the money, you will need to ensure you are budgeting, saving, and only spending as much as you need to.
Determine what you do and make sure you do it well – This simple yet often overlooked strategy will help you get your footing in such a competitive landscape. Prioritize producing high-quality, tasty food products, even if it means starting small to perfect your craft and establish credibility. You need to build a name for yourself before expanding your offerings – find your unique selling point and focus on that to build your competitive advantage.
Invest in quality equipment – Even though you pay more for quality equipment, you will recoup the costs in the long run because you will not have to spend as much money on future repairs and replacements.
Don’t be afraid of change – Innovation and adaption are key factors in the success of any business. You need to find ways to evolve your business as the industry evolves around you. Avoiding current trends, such as eCommerce and automation, will only hurt your business in the long run.
Financing Options for Food Manufacturing Companies
In addition to invoice factoring, food manufacturing companies have several other financing options to consider. These include traditional bank loans, equipment financing, lines of credit, and business credit cards. It’s important to carefully compare the terms and fees of each option to determine the best fit for your business.
Traditional loans – Small business loans offered through banks, credit unions, or online lenders can be convenient. You will just need to keep an eye on the repayment terms and interest rates. This financing option can be slow to pay out and will also require collateral and good credit, among other strict eligibility requirements.
Inventory Financing – Inventory financing is a short-term, asset-based loan or revolving line of credit that is based on the value of some or all of your inventory. The lender you approach will provide you with a loan based on a percentage of your inventory’s value, and the inventory itself will be used as collateral for the loan. The money can be used to fill cash flow gaps for businesses that have a lot of money tied up in their inventory. It is important to note that the value of your inventory can depreciate over time, so if your inventory doesn’t sell as fast as you expected it to, there may be a gap between the value of your collateral and how much your loan repayment will be.
Equipment Financing – This type of financing is typically structured as a loan with a fixed repayment term and a fixed or variable interest rate. It allows you to purchase the equipment you need to operate your business, but the terms will vary depending on the lender. Some lenders offer to purchase the equipment on your behalf, while others use the equipment as collateral for your loan. So, if you default on your payments, they are able to claim the asset.
Government funding programs – In order to offset the costs of strategic growth projects, manufacturers in Canada are eligible to apply for a variety of grants and loans. There are more government funding sources available to manufacturers than to other industries. Nevertheless, you will need to conduct extensive research into the qualification criteria and go through detailed application and approval processes. So, if you’re looking for instant cash flow, you may want to consider alternative financing options.
Invoice Factoring – Invoice factoring is a type of financial service that allows businesses to receive immediate payment for their outstanding invoices. The business sells its invoices to a factoring company, which advances a percentage of the invoice value to the business upfront. The factoring company then collects payment from the customer when the invoice is due. Invoice factoring can be a useful option for businesses that need to improve their cash flow or that have a high volume of outstanding invoices. It can also be a helpful tool for businesses that have trouble getting traditional loans or that need to pay their bills before they receive payment from their customers.
If you’re a food manufacturing company interested in invoice factoring, it’s important to work with a reputable and experienced provider. They can help you understand the process and determine if invoice factoring is the right fit for your business.
Browse our Factoring Guide to find out more about what you can expect from invoice factoring services in Canada. You can also request a quote through Factoring Companies Canada for help finding the best industry-specific factoring company to help you grow your business.