Selling products and services to the US government can be a very profitable enterprise. The US government can be one of the best customers your business can get. They buy almost any product and service that exists. By law, they are structured to help small business owners succeed. And, unlike most commercial customers, they pay their invoices quickly. If you work with government projects you know that you need to treat this customer very well and be sure that you always deliver what you promised – on time and at the right cost.
So, what happens if you bid for a government contract, win it, and realize that you don’t have the capital to deliver? One alternative is to try and go to an institution to get business financing. Many institutions will provide a business loan (or similar financing) to government contractors. But as you know, qualifying for business loans can be very difficult, especially for startups. Institutions will review your business plan, along with your company’s financial statements, management team and track record. Because of this, many startup companies find that obtaining financing can be very challenging.
This problem is particularly challenging for product re-sellers. Most product re-sellers that work with the government need to pay their suppliers before they get paid by the government. Because of this, they can only compete for certain bids since their capital limits the size of the projects that they can pursue. Some resellers are able to negotiate better terms with their suppliers, basically enabling them to wait until the government pays them first.
There are two other alternatives that can help you grow. They are invoice factoring and po financing. Both are alternative sources of financing and can be ideal for government suppliers.
Let’s looks at two examples to see how invoice factoring and po funding can help your company grow. Let’s say that you have a government purchase order that you have completed and will get paid in 30 days. Let’s also say that your supplier needs to be paid in 10 days. The problem could easily be fixed if you could get an advance payment on your government invoice. That is exactly what accounts receivable factoring can do for you. It provides you with an advance on your invoice that enables you to pay your supplier on time. This enables you to maximize the use of your supplier’s payment terms to your advantage, helping you grow your company.