Working on solving a problem for the day job

Long ago, I concluded that the day job was not a bank or credit granting institution. We aren’t equity financed at this time, have no finance arm/division with capital backing to provide large credit for customers to purchase with.

And we have customers. Lots of them. Many/most asking for credit terms. But we can’t really float a loan of 1/5 of our yearly revenue for 90 days as some of these opportunities would require. Credit from our banks has grown very expensive. This has nothing to do with us, and everything to do with the market for capital, and how averse it is to (what it perceives as) risk. There are very strong echos from the banks with exposure in the EU, that they may not be able to extend any credit without hard collateral.

So we’ve come up with some creative solutions. And they mostly work. Except where they don’t work. In the latter case, we’ve had to walk away from business (pretty significant amounts of this business) when no one would underwrite a particular purchase. Since we build in a JIT mode, this is critical for the larger orders, as my team and my suppliers would … really … like to get paid on time, and I can’t tie up all our operational capital into a single deal. And yes, we’ve had customers and partners ask us to do this. And no, we won’t.

So I am looking for a way to get a customer something roughly equivalent to a credit card. So they can buy from us, and we don’t have to be the credit agency/bank. Let someone else take that risk, and add their reward to the price. Someone who has this as their core expertise.

We build some of the fastest and tightest coupled storage and computing systems available in market. Thats our expertise. Lending money (e.g. credit terms)? Not so much.

Seems like there should be good solutions out there. I’ve looked at a few, but the cost of capital in some cases is very high. Far higher than we can afford, and more than the customer/partner would be willing to pay.

This seems like such a simple/obvious problem, that I am convinced there must be a simple/obvious solution. I should note that the customer/partner in this case is not in the US, so this complicates things.

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One thought on “Working on solving a problem for the day job

  1. Have you looked into leasing companies to suggest to your customers? They often also provide ‘financing’. Some specialize in tech hw purchases. We used one to buy a pair of Ironports once. You can sort of put packages together with the leasing company, and offer the terms, underwritten by the leasing company.

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