How We Work
Our innovation financing solution is totally results-focused.
We don’t produce lengthy reports that no one reads!
Discovering your potential
We know what good looks like and how funders/investors think and work. We know what they’re looking for. So, we work with you to develop and refine your business strategy. We:
- review & benchmark your current strategy
- rebuild your R&I road map to deliver competitive advantage
- identify and prioritise strategic scaling options
- create the component collateral to increase your fundability
- develop your funding strategy and road map
Getting you the innovation financing you need
We’ll help you through the entire process of identifying and applying for the non-dilution funding you need – even post-project support if you need it.
Sources of innovation financing include:
There are several UK and EU R&D grant funding programmes available to technology companies seeking to engage in the development of innovative and pioneering products.
However, understanding what R&D grants are available at a point in time and which is best suited to their needs and then acquiring the expertise and time to successfully address the assessment process, can be very challenging for any company attempting to go it alone.
R&D Grant funding award criteria is often difficult to define and the difference between success and failure can sometimes feel like a lottery.
Whilst some R&D Grant funding programmes differentiate between SMEs and Large Enterprises and some require collaboration, there are some general questions a company considering applying for R&D Grant funding must answer YES to before proceeding:
- You have a long-term strategy for your technology or business
- Your project is beyond the state of art with high innovation potential
- You can demonstrate that your project delivers value for money and clearly benefits from the proposed injection of funds
- Your business has sufficient funding to invest in the project and continue to trade during the project period
- Your project will leave a legacy e.g. growing business, increased employment, protected IP etc
- You can clearly demonstrate the market opportunity and how you plan to exploit it
- You have a credible team to implement the project
Government backed loan schemes
2020 has seen the Government support for SME loans front and centre with Bounce Back Loans (BBLs), Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan schemes (CBILS and CLBILS) and the Future Fund with HM Treasury reporting they issued £38.2Bn to 910,000 businesses through these schemes.
April 2021 will see a new replacement loan scheme – The Recovery Loan Scheme – offering loans and other kinds of finance up to £10m.
What many companies are still relatively unaware of are the numerous existing government-backed loan schemes for businesses, the majority of which are facilitated by the British Business Bank (BBB), part of the BEIS. The firm distributes its loan instruments either directly or via a network of partners, either nationally or regionally.
Their products are aimed at SMEs who have been unable to secure funding through mainstream routes with the gov’t underwriting some or all the risk.
Their offerings cover both debt and equity instruments, and the blend varies by product.
Loans are available for companies at all stages of growth and range from £1,000 to £2m. As with commercial loans, there are specific terms and conditions around loans regarding rates, term and potential guarantees or requirements applied to the borrower and these vary by loan.
Growth debt is a financing option that at most only requires minimal dilution of equity ownership. It works particularly well for innovative tech businesses growing fast and aiming to achieve key milestones that will trigger a higher valuation in a future equity round or help them to reach the IPO stage.
It can be used by companies at different stages in their development:
- Businesses yet to break into profit – Growth debt can be used to fund this gap, maintain growth and avoid diluting owners’ equity when the business valuation is lower.
- Businesses that have reached break-even point – Growth debt can be used to scale the business without harming its profitability.
- Established and steadily growing businesses – Established businesses may still struggle to raise debt from traditional lenders. This may be because they have not been profitable long enough or don’t have enough assets on their balance sheet. Growth lenders invest earlier and in larger amounts because they take into consideration the growth rate of the company, rather than just looking at its history.
Growth debt is an expensive financing option; it only makes sense if it helps you build significant value in the company. The faster your company is growing, the more sense it makes. The following growth rates give an indication of what you will need to be eligible for growth debt.
- Pre-profit businesses – above 30% annual growth
- Break-even businesses – above 20% annual growth
- Established and steadily growing businesses – above 10% annual growth
In the highly competitive digital technology sector, developing and implementing an effective IP and commercialisation strategy is a complex, expensive and time-consuming task – the reasons why many companies struggle to do it properly.
Instead, companies too often fall into the trap of investing a huge amount of resource into developing a new idea, without considering how this idea might be fast-tracked into the market and achieve the returns it merits.
In addition, many companies fail to recognise the benefits of collaborating with partners to provide complementary technical skills and potentially valuable R&D funding support. If planned properly, technology and commercial licensing deals can be put in place, that protect IP and access new markets faster and more effectively.
Developing a clear, innovative commercialisation strategy that can deliver exponential growth is what separates the leaders from the followers.
There are now many different avenues of credit available to businesses alongside traditional banks, ranging from individual investors to P2P lenders and specialist venture capital firms. Increased choice is good, but it can also complicate the borrowing decision.
Business loans are designed to support commercial organisations in the activity of their business, either as they trade, or as part of a strategic development plan. For growing, profitable businesses, these loans can enable continued investment in growth without having to consider relinquishing some control via equity.
Whilst it may appear there are many different variants available, in essence, there are four basic types of business loan.
- Secured Loan – where the lender requires the borrower to put forward an asset or property as collateral, in order to reduce the risk of non-payment. A wide range of assets are accepted as security.
- Unsecured Loan – where no collateral is required, lending decisions being based purely on the borrower’s credit rating. Personal guarantees from directors may be required, and higher rates of interest may be charged because of the increased risk.
- Revolving Credit – an open-ended loan, whereby a business has access to a discretionary amount they can dip into as required. Normally short-term and used as working capital.
- Business Cash Advance – available in various forms (e.g. advanced loans against the projected value of new sales contracts, advanced loans against future R&D tax credit claims). Instead of paying off a balance with interest over a set term, the lender ‘sells’ an agreed % of future sales to the lender.
Other things that need to be considered when choosing which business loan to go for include – length of repayment terms, how much you can borrow (affected by several factors), interest rates (fixed or variable), repayment schedule, and how quickly you want the loan.
Realising your potential
Scaling is a challenge and a resource drain. Infintec’s expertise lies in creating real value through identifying and delivering hi-value, low-risk/resource revenue streams on a global basis.
- Market profiling
- OEM Licensing
- 3rd Party Sales Channels
- Sourcing Collaboration Partners
Preparing you for equity funding
Equity funding can have a strong role to play. We’ll support you here too.
- Strategic assessment of debt/equity funding options
- Equity investor readiness preparation
Supporting over-stretched management
Yours is a growing tech business. No doubt your senior management teams are pretty stretched for time and capacity. We’ll support you by providing all the expert know-how you need to deliver your strategy. Typically, this support comes in the form of
- Part-time FDs/Interim Management
- Virtual FDs