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How Apprentice adviser can win her late payment battle

Adviser to Lord Sugar on the Apprentice and the government’s Small Business Ambassador Karren Brady has late payment in her sights. She would do well to include alternative finance in her plans.

Late payment, with its effect on cashflow, is a longstanding issue for small businesses, for whom the delay in settling invoices by larger companies can be a significant threat. Earlier in the year, the Federation of Small Businesses made it clear how widespread the problem is. So, the declaration by Brady that she is taking on what she has labelled an unethical practice is welcome news.

It remains to be seen how she will achieve her goal – by giving the Prompt Payment Code some real teeth perhaps – but greater use of alternative finance, and in particular invoice finance, can help small businesses avoid the stresses of late payment and maintain cashflow.

This point is highlighted in a new article on maintaining cashflow in Business Matters magazine. It offers six points of advice on the subject, including learning more about alternative finance, discussing and agreeing payment terms up front and being organised with invoicing.

Hopefully, a high-profile campaign to tackle the problem of late payment will generate results. If SME optimism – new data from the European SME Capex Barometer indicate that UK SMEs are ready to increase their capital investment by 12% to almost £60 billion over the next 12 months – is to be turned into real growth, progress must be made. Alternative finance is integral to success.

To find out more about A&T Business Associates services, contact us on 01903 602211 or info@atbusinessassociates.co.uk.

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