Expansion Fund

Assessing your company’s financial position

If you're not so clued up about the accounting and financial side of your business, you may not realise how an in-depth financial analysis can benefit your company. Learn how to get the most out of your financial information. You may think that because you have good bookkeeping and accounting processes in place and your cash flow is under control, you can sit back and relax. Unfortunately, you'd be wrong. This is the perfect time to do an in-de...
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Getting finance for my small business

Ever wondered why SMEs cannot access finance for their businesses? And is it justified? Research indicates that access to finance is the main hindrance for entrepreneurs in starting or expanding a business. This is not just a local phenomenon, but is experienced by entrepreneurs worldwide. Sometimes it is justified. There is a simple reason for the lack of available finance for SMEs, and that is the associated risk involved in the financing of...
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The science and art of valuing a business

The question “What is the value of this business?” is one of those best answered by another question: “Who wants to know?” A seller of the business, who may have spent many years and tears building it, will try to emphasize the most positive aspects, says Gerrie van Biljon, executive director of Business Partners. If he cannot find much to be positive about in the last set of financial statements, he will find it in the future prospects ...
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No business is too small for a proper budget

Many business owners mistakenly think their operation is too small for a formal budgeting process. The budget (of sorts) that many business owners keep inside their heads is often more like a basic recipe, and is usually inadequate to deal with the constant change that every business is subject to. This is according to Jeremy Lang, regional general manager at Business Partners Limited, who says that no business is too small for the discipline of ...
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SME-friendly Budget will boost job creation, economic growth

Most small and medium business owners know what it's like to put together a budget under difficult circumstances. Many will therefore be sparing a thought for finance minister Pravin Gordhan, who on 26 February will be announcing the national Budget in the face of a yawning deficit, a falling rand, menacing inflation and sluggish growth. However, the answer to much of these woes lies in the extent to which the minister spares a thought for small ...
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Time to start looking at income growth again

2014 looks like the year in which business owners will be shaking themselves out of the mindset of survival through cost cutting to one of expansion through income growth, says Anton Roelofse, regional general manager of Business Partners. His own gut feeling as an experienced SME financier is backed by surveys which suggest improving confidence among business owners. The latest results from the Business Partners Limited SME Index shows a five pe...
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Ten financial management tips for tough times

Business Partners Limited data gathered over years of working with South Africa’s business owners tell a fascinating story about business survival. Figures compiled by Business Partners Limited regional general manager Anton Roelofse show that 34% of businesses failures are caused by poor financial management. Add to that the 12% that fail because of poor record keeping, and it becomes clear that almost half of all business failures could have ...
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SA SMEs cutting costs on cyber security could threaten business survival

In the current economic climate South African SMEs are increasingly cutting costs due to the sustained impacts of the global financial crisis. This is according to the recently released KPMG Business Leaders Survey, which found that a significant amount of local businesses were attempting to cut costs due to the uncertainty of the current global economic climate. According to Ben Bierman, the CFO of Business Partners Limited, SMEs should be wary ...
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SA SMEs need to create cash cushion

During an economic downturn Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are often hit the hardest. Unlike large corporations, SMEs do not have the large cash reserves required to navigate the turbulent economic conditions currently being experienced in South Africa. The National Debt Mediation Association (NDBA) announced earlier this week that there has been a substantial increase in small businesses going under due to financial stress, and that many p...
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Access to finance: part three

Following up on part one and part two of the previous articles, part three brings you the importance of financial statements. What I have experienced is that most entrepreneurs do not spend enough time on this aspect of their businesses or rather downplay its importance. Financial statements are so foreign to some, you wonder how their businesses have made it this far, but obviously it also shows that the financial statements are not the only dec...
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